Drawing Chalkboard Signs for a Bridal Shower!
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How Lauren Draws Chalkboard Signs
Above is a time-lapse video showing the first time I used chalk markers for a project! It was a learning experience and had a bit of technique to it to get the results I desired. The way I did it was first laying out the signs on my computer. I measured the signs themselves and made an artboard that size, typing out the words in the custom dimensions, so I had a better chance of spacing it how I wanted on the actual signs. Then I used my computer screen for reference and freehanded the text. Keep in mind this time-lapse is very sped up. These signs took me a while to complete. Don't get discouraged if it's taking you a long time, but also go into it knowing that it does take time. So plan accordingly ;)
There's definitely a technique for using chalk markers! I used chisel tip markers and with the white also had a skinny tip marker. Here are some tips that I found:
- You push the tip to load the marker with ink. Then you can draw for a bit and push the tip again when you need to "reload" the tip with ink. You can "reload" more often to get a thicker coat drawn and make the color less transparent, but this will also use up your ink faster. So decide what look and budget you are going for ;)
- You DO NOT have to keep pushing down on the tip as you draw. This is what I did first, as you can see in the beginning of this video, and it makes a blotchy mess.
- Using a chisel tip marker, I first used the fine tip to draw out the words to get the spacing down. If you have a chisel tip AND a fine tip like I did with the white, you can use the fine tip for getting the words down and switch to the chisel tip for thickening up the font.
- You can use the chisel tip to your advantage similar to using a calligraphy pen! It does not always work for every letter though if you are trying to match a specific font. You can stylize the font to work for you though! This also depends on the size of the words. If it's large, then it will take more than one stroke to get each letter to create the thickness you may want.
- It may be worth testing a tiny, inconspicuous area first, for these two reasons, BUT be aware that you may not be able to erase it! When purchasing chalkboards, try to make sure they are for use with chalk markers.
- BEWARE! Not all chalkboards are created equal! Some chalkboards you cannot use chalk markers on, because they do not erase completely! You will get a permanent mark from your words on the chalkboard.
- BEWARE! Not all chalk markers are created equal! Some chalk markers do not erase well on certain chalkboard types while other markers will (see more info below on my experience with the gold chalk marker).
- Many times I went back and forth over an area to get the coverage and thickness I desired, once again, using the chisel tip to my advantage.
- You don't have to go in exact sentence word order. I would draw out some of the bigger, more important or more complicated words first to get the spacing down, then come back in and fill in smaller, simpler words and fonts.
- I look at my computer reference A LOT!
- Don't be afraid to erase! UNLESS yours doesn't erase well as mentioned above O_O
- Bigger signs are more difficult than smaller signs.
As you can also see in the video, I tried using a gold marker that had a really fat, flat tip. I had borrowed the markers and tried the gold one, because we wanted some gold lettering mixed in. This one DID NOT work for me though. I thought I could use the edge to get a thinner line, but I did not have any luck with that. I gave it several tries, but ended up always erasing it. ALSO, this pen did not erase well from one of the chalkboards (as you can see on the Sangria Bar sign). So this is something you need to be cautious about if you're concerned with the longevity and cleanliness of your chalkboard.
It was a fun project, and I've done more chalkboard signs since and offer it as a service. Thanks for watching and reading!
Have any additional thoughts or advice? Share in the comments below, or send us a message to let us know!