Monday, 22 August 2011

Make Do and Mend Monday

Today I've remembered what day of the week it is and am posting accordingly.  'Make Do and Mend Monday' was dreamt up by Heidi of  'The [lovely] Cranberry Chronicles' - well worth a visit!

When we were re-decorating Miss U-t-B's bedroom recently, the rather overworked write-on, wipe-off, magnetic noticeboard looked fit for nothing other than the bin, covered as it was in the rambled scrawlings of three teenage girls, in pens that claimed to be wipe-off but didn't really. 

I created a new noticeboard for Miss U-t-B's room, from a perspex-fronted photo frame, with hot-glued 
mini-pegs and buttons, plus ribbon trim, which she seemed happy with. The other board loitered for a long while on the landing, awaiting its fate.  Then this morning, I decided to try to re-vamp it for my workroom.

First job was to try to get rid of all the ink.  Alcohol was needed, and in the absence of something sensible I grabbed the (worryingly) nearest bottle...

{I'm not a lush really!}

...and used that, then some detergent and elbow grease, to get it, to all intents and purposes, clean again.

It is actually a 'Spontan' from Ikea - £9.39 's worth of usefulness that nearly went in the bin!

Actually, this is the wrong picture!

I wanted to preserve the write-on, wipe-off function on part of the board, but prettify with some (you guessed) fabric.  The hunt for the perfect cloth ensued...

Too pale...

Too dark...

Too busy...

Too pale again...

Too precious...

Too hole-y

Print running wrong way...

Too small...

Too pale again...

Just right!
A Thirties-style fabric I bought on ebay.

I cut a piece of fabric the right width, plus 3cm for going round the edge, using the selvedge for the edge that would be in the middle of the board (saves having to worry about frayed edges).

I marked a line where I wanted the fabric to come up to, then pasted a thin but thorough layer of 'Tacky Glue' onto the left side of the board.  As this was quite an expanse, it threatened to dry before I was finished - so I just hovered over the board with the iron and gave a quick shot of steam!  Problem solved!

The fabric was then smoothed onto the top...

...then the edges were pasted and corners neatly mitred...

Ribbon trim...

Then a bit of lace...

Then time to embellish some of the boring magnets...

Suffolk Puffs and Art Deco buttons...


Oh so versatile - which way up shall I go?

And finally in situ...

So glad I didn't put it in the bin!


  1. That is soooooo impressive. A beautiful, useful item that, but for your creativeness, would have been landfill.
    If you haven't used all the wet stuff in the green bottle, I suggest you pour yourself a reward later this evening.
    Carol xx

  2. Oh Alix...I have looked at these magnetic boards but they are too modern for my tastes. This is a FABULOUS way to make them work. I love the trim and lace as well as jazzing up the magnets themselves. Great job!

    Hugs from Holland ~

  3. Absolutely fantastic - a great job! Looks amazing and really useful too!
    Liz @ Shortbread & Ginger

  4. Absolutely 'just right'! When I scrolled down to that picture I didn't know if you were going to say it was 'too' anything, and I just desperately hoped you were going to go with that one! So glad you did. The finished board is great.

    I revamped my two big teaching whiteboards (I do one-to-one SEN and general tutoring at home here) with surgical spirit. The results are not as good as Gordon's Gin...

    Thanks for your comment. The one advantage of us not having been on holiday as a family yet is that we already live in a holiday destination. It's good to be reminded of that!

  5. Really like this, looks very expensive.

  6. Hi Alix
    thanks for visiting the blog.
    Yes, I know all about allergies, my youngest son (now 40) used to suffer from ezcema and was iffy around the one cat we had then. When he comes to visit now, he can just about stay for a couple of hours before he gets all sneezy and red eyed.
    I love what you've dont with the board, but I love the look of the bottle as well, makes me want a nice cool gin and tonic....

  7. What a great makeover.......impressive.

  8. The board looks fantastic, I love the fabric you used, just perfect xx

  9. that's what you're supposed do with gin ;D

    This made me laugh with all the 'too's' - and really like what you've done with the very unpretty ikea board. Love what you did with the magnets too.


  10. Good work! And a lovely fabric stash you have too.

  11. Could do with a few of these round my house,love the fabric sooo pretty,fantastical job Alix
    X Manda X

  12. What a great idea, it looks very professional. You are a dab hand at making the ordinary look fabulous!

  13. Just imagine how much Cath Kidston would sell something like that for!! Looks fab. M x