Quick and easy fall craft (plus a stain and poly comparison video)

My fall craft mojo has kicked into full gear, mostly because I took a run today that was so freakin’ hot I truly thought I was going to melt into a puddle of my own sweat. Yep. I am now officially ready for cooler weather.

Today I wanted to share with you a simple and inexpensive fall craft you can complete in one toddler nap time. True story.


Supplies you’ll need for this project:

  • Wooden frame (Mine is a Crates and Pallet version – available at Home Depot – but you could use any leftover frame you have on hand, provided it still has its cardboard backing intact.)
  • Chalkboard spray paint 
  • Wood stain in a cherry finish
  • Chalk and chalk markers
  • Regular printer paper
  • Polyurethane to seal the frame (optional)

Below are the step-by-step instructions and a quick video* that shows exactly how I made this craft project. I also include in the video a demonstration comparing a few different stains and polyurethanes.

Step 1: Stain the frame.

Step 2: Spray the frame’s cardboard backing with a coat of chalkboard paint.

Step 3: While the frame and cardboard dry, design and print out the words for your art on regular printer paper. I created my design in a simple Word document.

Step 4: Take a piece of regular chalk and rub it onto the back of all your paper printouts.

Step 5: Position the paper printouts onto the chalkboard-painted cardboard (make sure the paint is dry first).

Step 6: Take a blunt pencil and trace the outline of your printed words. (This will transfer a faint chalk “carbon copy” onto the cardboard. You can see another example of this method here.)

Step 7: Fill in the chalk outline using chalk markers of your choice. Done!

Have you done any fall crafting yet?

*Special thanks to Rust-Oleum for sponsoring the video featured in this post and to Crates and Pallet for providing the frame used for this craft project. 

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10 Responses

  1. Emily says:

    Awesome project! Do the chalk markers rub off easily like regular chalk?

    • Susan says:

      Emily, you can definitely remove the markings easily with a damp cloth, but I would say chalk markers do have a bit more staying power than regular chalk. I also like the fact that they give you more precision and a more vibrant outline. Thanks for stopping by. Hope all is well with you. 🙂

  2. gail says:


    I love how your chalkboard turned out. Great video too!


  3. Sally says:

    Enjoyed the video. Did the frame you bought at Home Depot come complete or did you have to put it together? Did they have different sizes? Thanks!

    • Susan says:

      It came complete with the wooden frame and cardboard backing put together (but no glass). I just needed to peel away the plastic wrap it was in, lol. I’m not sure if they have different sizes. I was actually sent in the mail the one I used for this project. I’ll have to check next time I head to the Home Depot to see if they have different options in the store. Did you have a particular size you’re looking for? If so, I know the folks at Crates and Pallet that actually make this product (they ship it to Home Depot for retail sale) and I can put a bug in their ear if consumers are looking for something specific. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

  4. Steven says:

    Awesome. Also super handy for store sign’s and stuff :-).

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