Yesterday, I did one of my favorite things to do on a Saturday: I taught a DIY/repurposing workshop at the Atlanta Habitat for Humanity ReStore! I teach a DIY class there about every quarter, and you can find my Habitat workshop project tutorials by clicking on this link or by going to the “About” tab above and then clicking on “Habitat for Humanity ReStore Workshops.”
Anyway, yesterday’s class was all about repurposing shutters and curtains. One project I created for that class I’m going to share with you today – how to repurpose shutters into a message center for your home!
FYI, for the “curtain” part of the class, I talked about how I turned shower curtains, curtains, and fabric into faux Roman shades – and you can find that tutorial by clicking here.
This shutter project is so easy to complete and so inexpensive to make! The shutters were $5 and the hook was $1.97 at the ReStore, and I used leftover paint and two smaller hooks I already had. So for less than $10, I made a creative, fun, unique message center, perfect for the kitchen or mudroom!
Here’s what you need to repurpose shutters into a message center:
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Wood shutter – use wood shutters for this project, because you can drill into them and they are heavy enough to hold notes and keys and anything else you hang on it.
damp paper towel or tack cloth
paint – I used Rust-Oleum Chalkboard Paint in green (!! swoon !!), because I wanted to be able to write on the message center.
chalk markers (or just regular chalk)
screwdriver – I have this one and love, love, love it!
D-rings if you are going to hang it up
clothespins (you can paint these with craft paint to make them extra-fancy!)
Here’s how to repurpose shutters into a message center:
(1) Sand the shutter.
First, sand the part of the shutter that you are going to paint. Use the 220-grit sandpaper for this.
You don’t want to remove the finish here; you just want to rough up the surface a little to create a good base for the paint to adhere.
After sanding, wipe it down with a damp cloth or a tack cloth. Make sure you’ve got a clean, dust-free surface on which to paint.
(2) Paint the frame of the shutter.
Tape off the louvers of the shutter and the edges, if you are worried about getting paint on them. Then paint chalkboard paint on the frame of the shutter.
It took three coats of the chalkboard paint to get a good, even finish. The can says to let the paint cure for 7 days before writing on it, but I’m not that patient! I usually wait maybe a day. 🙂
(3) Attach the hooks.
Once the paint has dried, attach the hooks to the shutter.
When choosing hooks and where to place them, consider the size and weight of the shutter and the size and weight of what you want to hang on the shutter. You don’t want to hang something too heavy, so that it pulls the hooks out or the shutter down. Also, you want to place the hooks so that they are evenly spaced and balanced, so that the shutter doesn’t tip when something’s hung on it.
I placed the middle hook over the channel where the middle support would go (see photo, above). Since I’m not going to use the louvers anymore, I wanted to cover that up.
To attach the hooks, pre-drill the holes with the appropriate size drill bit. That way, you don’t risk splitting the wood on the shutter.
(4) Decorate, hang, and enjoy!
I wrote on mine with chalk marker (so much easier than using real chalk!), and added clothespins to attach reminders to the louvers.
To make the clothespins fancy, paint them with craft paint! This is a great project for kids to do, if you have some hanging around!
And there you go – a shutter that otherwise would go unused or in the trash, repurposed into a useful and fun message center!
To find out about the next Habitat for Humanity ReStore class I’m teaching, sign up for my newsletter! It’s easy, and I promise never to spam you!
For another great project to repurpose shutters, check out how I repurposed old shutters into a privacy screen HERE!