So this whole command center project started one day when I was at World Market…I saw this one and thought “man I could really use a command center in the kitchen”.
I kinda sorta liked this one, so I looked at the price tag…it was nearly $80 bucks! It’s just some plywood, chalkboard paint, trim and a basket. I bet I could make it for $15… probably less since I have most that stuff on hand.
So, I (of course) decided to make my own, more original, more useful and more unique command center/mail sorter. It all started with an ugly blank wall and a random old frame I got a a garage sale…for free. I found it leaning up against the wall in a barn and asked “how much do you want for this?” And they said “I don’t even know what that is or why anyone would want it, so please, just take it.” And take it I did.
Adam cut me a square of plywood to fit in the frame and I decided to give magnetic paint a try. I’ve heard good things about it, plus the paint is ridiculously heavy…which means lots metal for magnetic goodness.
I followed the directions perfectly. I stirred like a madwoman and did three thin coats, letting it dry between each one. Then I went and grabbed my magnets to give it a try…and my magnet didn’t even THINK about sticking. So I did three more coats with the same results. Then I slopped on three more super think “you’d better freakin work” coats, and and the magnet stuck, but barely. It wouldn’t even support it’s own weight, it stuck to my board and then slid slowly down to the floor. My plan was to Mod Podge a map over the magnetic paint, so this was not going to work and I ended up returning it and buying sheet metal. Consider yourself officially warned about the effectiveness of magnetic paint.
The sheet metal works like a dream though! My parents graciously donated a map of the Texas coastline for my magnet board and I Mod Podged that sucker right on.
In hindsight I really should have waited for Adam to get home to do this, an extra pair of hands would have been really helpful. Despite my best efforts it turned out superbly wrinkly.
It did smooth out a little as it dried, but it’s a far cry from smooth. Half of me wants to be pretty upset that its a wrinkle factory and the other half is like “whatever….farmhouse baby!” It’s still too early to tell which half is going to win.
Next glued my magnet board to my frame using liquid nails and let it dry for what felt like forever. On a side note, I really need more than two clamps! I mean scuba weights work great, but still…
The back part of the frame wasn’t looking great, so I taped it off and painted it green for an extra hint of color.
Ehhh…nice right? (Oh and I added some rope to the inside edge because the top and bottom looked a little ragged.)
The baskets are from Pick Your Plum…it’s a deal a day craft site and I couldn’t believe my lucky stars when these popped up. I labeled them a little different than your usual mail sorter, I have “outbox”, “”needs attention”, and “coupons and gift cards”. I used “needs attention” instead of “inbox” cause I need something that’s gonna light a fire under my butt and “inbox” just wasn’t going to cut it. It also seems like coupons and gift cards are always floating around my house, so I gave them a home.
The labels are just cut pieces of plywood (leftover from the plank wall). I stained them, painted the edges green, used leftover map bits to make the letters, and tied it up with some bakers twine. I’m pretty sure no one else has labels quite like this!
As for the magnets (I know, this should really be like three posts), they are glass tiles. I love them and they are the easiest things ever to make. This collage below should explain the process well enough…
Here’s the whole thing again, stepped back for a little perspective. That table is a new craigslist find and it is getting a makeover next!
Ten dedicated reader points to the person that can point out what else is new (and not yet blogged about) in that picture, and ten intuitive reader points to the person that can correctly guess what color I’m going to paint that table!
BTW, I know your dying to know what I did with all that “stuff”…the step stool and brooms and whatnot. Well, it’s cleverly stored right here…
Don’t see it? How about now…
I’m not gonna lie, I kinda feel like an evil genius :)
Anyway, now I just need to finish up the command center by painting that table!