Etsy Journal

Explore ideas and inspiration for creative living

Easy-to-Make Magnetic Memo Boards

Make this school year the most organized yet with a colorful and customizable magnetic memo board DIY.

DIY memo board tutorial - magnetic memo boards hanging on a wall
Photo by: Ashley Rose

Nothing says back-to-school like early mornings, freshly sharpened pencils, and the yearly scramble to get organized. Since we can’t do much about the early mornings (though may we suggest coffee?), we’re focusing on the fun parts of gearing up for a brand-new academic year—like getting your desk decor on point. This year, take your deskie game up a notch with these DIY memo boards, customizable in the shapes and colors of your choosing and magnetic to give make posting all those notes and reminders super easy. Give your to-do's a pretty new home and add a fresh pop of color to your wall, to boot—and don't forget to pick up some back-to-school essentials for your mini-me while you're at it, too! Being organized never looked so good.

Cute back-to-school supplies

Help them score an A+ in expression with one-of-a-kind school must-haves.

Cute school supplies from Etsy
SHOP (clockwise from top left): Shark-shaped pencil case from Kleine Franzosen, $38; printable first day of school pennants from Little Things Village, $5; matching big dipper and little dipper T-shirts from Blackbird Supply, $58 for two; reusable snack bag from la fabrik éco, $12; mini lion backpack from MUNI, from $58; grammar pencil set from Newton And The Apple, $10

DIY memo board instructions

At a glance

Time: 6 hours (including drying time)

Difficulty: Easy

Supplies for a DIY memo board

For your DIY memo board, you will need

Step 1: Prep the cutouts for your DIY memo board

Paint one side of each MDF cutout with magnetic paint, using a foam brush. For optimum magnetic stickiness, add two to three layers of paint, letting the memo boards dry for an hour between each coat.

Step 2: Paint your DIY memo boards

Once the magnetic paint has completely dried, use a foam brush to apply colored craft paint to the various memo board cutouts, layering it on top of the magnetic paint. Depending on your choice of colors, you may need several coats of paint to get an opaque look. (We used three to four coats for our cutouts.) Once you've achieved your desired level of saturation, set the memo boards aside to dry.

Step 3: Create the brass magnets to add to your DIY memo board

To make your magnets, position the brass shapes on a clean surface and apply a small dollop of superglue to the backside of each shape. Carefully place a magnet round on top of the glue and leave it to set. Repeat this step to your heart's content, creating as many brass magnets as you’d like.

Step 4: Attach the hangers to your memo board

Now that your DIY memo boards have dried, it’s time to attach the hangers. Apply a thin line of superglue to the back of a metal picture hanger and press it firmly onto the backside of the board, making sure that it's centered one to two inches from the top of the board. Repeat for each memo board.

Step 5: Secure with nails

Once the glue has set, hammer two 1/2-inch nails into each side of the picture hanger for extra hanging security.

Step 6: Style your DIY memo board!

Your memo boards are officially ready to be hung on the wall and styled to suit your space. Add the magnets and toss up your to-do's—we opted to include a few fun magnetic planters for extra flair (they’d be perfect for mini pens or pencils, too). Last, but not least—don't forget to snap a deskie!

Finished DIY magnetic memo boards

Photos by Ashley Rose. 

Ashley Rose image
Ashley Rose

Ashley Rose is the creative force behind Sugar & Cloth, a DIY lifestyle blog based in Houston, TX. After a stint in art school, Ashley moved across the country and began blogging to share all of her creative endeavors with friends and family back home. Now, Sugar & Cloth has become a coveted lifestyle destination for all things DIY, including food, home décor, creative entertaining, and travel. Since launching in 2011, Sugar & Cloth has been named Editor’s choice for Best DIY Blog by Better Homes and Gardens, a Top 10 DIY Blog by Yahoo!, and has earned acclaim from The Huffington Post, Oprah Magazine, Martha Stewart Living, Good Housekeeping, HGTV, and more.

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