Framed Magnetic Chalkboard Spice Rack

I finished a project this morning, and I’m so excited about how it turned out.  Let me introduce you to my new framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

If you’ve been around here much, you probably recognize that frame.  It used to be a dry erase message board.

dry erase board 10

I made that dry erase message board in January of this year, and since then I have learned an interesting thing about myself.  I don’t use message boards.  In the months that this has been on my wall, I’ve written on it once.  That’s it.  Once.

So, having no need for a message board, I started thinking about other ways I could use that space.  Let’s face it, when you live in 834 square feet, every single inch is valuable, and that includes the limited wall space I have as well.

I didn’t need a message board, but what I desperately needed was a way to better organize my spices.  The spice shelf in my cabinet had become so messy that it was useless.  Little jars piled on more little jars, and everything overflowing to the point that my lazy susan wouldn’t even turn anymore.

spice-cabinet-with-lazy-susan

Before making mine, I searched online for some instructions.  Obviously this idea isn’t an A2D original.  You can even buy magnetic spice racks at Ikea and other stores.  I did make some changes to mine, though.  Here are the details:

Tools & Supplies:

  • 1/4” plywood or MDF,
  • Metal duct,
  • Decorative frame,
  • 4 oz. jelly jars,
  • Neodymium magnets,
  • Epoxy adhesive,
  • Chalkboard paint,
  • Sandpaper,
  • Chalk,
  • Gloves,
  • Tin snips,
  • “L” square or yardstick, and
  • Jigsaw.

 

Instructions:

1.  Using a jigsaw and “L” square (or yardstick), mark and cut out a piece of 1/4” plywood or MDF to fit into the frame.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

2.  Use a jigsaw to cut out the plywood (or MDF).

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

3.  Next, using a metal duct that looks like this (available at any big box home improvement store)…

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

…use tin snips to cut the metal to fit the plywood.  Be sure to use gloves!!  The edges of the cut metal will slice right through your skin if you’re not careful!

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

You can also purchase a flat sheet of metal (also available at big box home improvement stores), but the cost is significantly higher.  This metal duct was under $5, while a flat sheet of metal would have cost $20.

4.  Using a strong adhesive like this one…

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

…adhere the metal to the plywood and weigh it down with heavy items so that it’s completely flat.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

5.  When the adhesive is completely dry, use 220-grit sandpaper and sand the surface of the metal, then cover with chalkboard paint.  Remember, when using spray paint, several thin coats is better than a couple of thick coats!

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

6.  Next, assemble the jars.  *Don’t use hot glue for this!  I learned the hard way that hot glue doesn’t hold those super strong magnets!

So using an epoxy type of adhesive, glue the lid of the jar into the ring, and then glue two 1/2” x 1/8” neodymium magnets to the top of the lid.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

With everything assembled, it should look like this.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

If you use larger neodymium magnets, you could probably get away with using only one per jar.  Unfortunately, this was the largest size I could find locally.

7.  With all of the jars assembled, you’re ready to fill them with spices.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

8.  Before assembling everything, be sure to condition the chalkboard by rubbing the side of a piece of chalk over the entire surface, and then wiping off the chalk.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

9.  I also chose to write the names of the spices on the board before nailing the chalkboard into the frame.

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

10.  Nail the plywood into the frame, attach the spice jars, and you’re done!

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

DIY project:  How to make a framed magnetic chalkboard spice rack

I think I’ll definitely get much more use out of this than I did out of the dry erase board.

As a side note, I’ve read from many sources that spices retain their flavor much longer if they’re not always exposed to light.  Unfortunately, my kitchen gets almost no natural light, so I’m not worried about these spices losing their flavor.

However, if your kitchen does get a good deal of natural light and/or if you find that you leave your lights on in your kitchen quite a bit, then it might be better to use the inside of a cabinet door for a magnetic spice rack, or you could make this framed spice rack to put inside a pantry if yours is large enough and has enough wall space.

I still have a lot more organizing to do in my kitchen.  Remember when I said I’d give myself two weeks to get it organized?  Ha!  Yeah, right!  But it’ll get there, slowly but surely, one project at a time.

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Comments

  1. brookieadkins says

    Love this! I made something similar at my old house and had it inside my cabinet, but I love showing it off 

  2. Jean says

    I love this, Kristi!  My problem would be that if I took three down at the same time and they looked similar, I might not know for sure where to put them back.  Guess I would need labels on the jars, too. 

    • Anna says

      I was thinking that too but what if you used the chalkboard paint on the bottom of the jar? Then you could put the spice name on the bottom of the jar also.

    • Chelsey says

      While searching today, I just found some chalkboard contact paper- so you can write the name on the jar, and remove it if you choose to put a different spice in that particular jar.

  3. Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating says

    I was thinking about that, too.  I think I'll write the name of the spice on top of the lids with a Sharpie marker.  That way it won't show when it's on the magnetic board, but I won't lose track of what spice it is when it's sitting on the counter.

  4. Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating says

    I just pull them off the magnetic board, give 'em a little shake to even out the contents, and then open the lid.  :)

  5. 69brushstrokes says

    What a fun, useful project!  It turned out beautiful.  The timing is perfect for me as I recently had my husband price the sheet metal for a magnetic board and decided not to do it for now because of how spendy it was…maybe I can reconsider with your metal duct tip.  Thanks!  Have fun with your projects!!! 

  6. Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating says

    Right now I don't have any other plans for it.  In general, I'm kind of tired of the whole chalkboard paint trend, but it seemed appropriate with this project.  :)

    • Casey says

      I have a silly question. When you prepare the chalkboard is there a certain brand of calk you use? When I tried some generic brand it just scratched the paint and when I went to write on it you could barely see the words. I started over with the chalkboard paint but can’t figure out were I went wrong.

  7. Roeshel says

    I love pretty organization and this is super cute!  Great idea, Kristi! (We did something a lot different but similar idea using metal lazy Susan's. It's definitely a huge space saver!)

  8. Peggy says

    What a great idea….I made a message board with sheet metal too….painting it with black chalk paint so it doubles as message and magnetic.  I bought a piece of sheet metal at a home improvement store for $18.00 (my frame is 2ft x 3ft).  My husband said no way!  He visited the local furnace installer and got the piece cut to fit for $8.00…..thats why I married that guy……he's the best! 

  9. Kyrstenwebb says

    This is amazing! I love the idea of using spices as a decorating technique and getting rid of that spice cabinet where you cannot find anything. So creative and going to try it out myself.

  10. Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating says

    Yep.  I've used it on several projects.  It's awful, especially when you consider that it's about $20 for a quart.  Last time I used it, I vowed to never use it again.

    This was far easier than the magnetic paint, and worked much better.

  11. Amy @ Elephant Eats says

    Great idea!!! If your kitchen has a lot of natural light, you could also use opaque containers rather than clear glass ones. It might not be as pretty, but perhaps paint them different colors?

  12. Marie says

    Beautiful idea – wish I could implement it myself..but my boyfriend gets through so many spices that he would need much bigger jars than on your spice board as I would be forever refilling them :)

  13. Bacurran says

    Wow…totally awesome, creative and out of the box thinking…love it! In addition to my love of decorating I am a huge foodie and my spice cabinet looks a lot like yours did…having to pull everything out just to find one item is a pain the butt not to mention time consuming. This is quick easy decorative and perfect!!! Great idea and fabulous execution! (can you tell how much i love this?)

  14. Beingbrook says

    This is awesome!  I used to have my spices in a similar thing but used little tins with pop off tops.  The screw thing would work so much better so it doesn't spill when getting the top off!  Love it!

  15. Greta Hudson says

    I love this! I have clear canisters but I never thought about making my own spice rack.  I like seeing the color and textures of the spices. The frame pulls it all together nicely.

  16. Amy Irigoyen says

    I love it! It's beautiful and functional. I have the same problem in my kitchen. This would be a great gift as well.

  17. Miss Charming says

    Beautiful job on a (decorative) functional piece.  The colors look great against the mural.  (And thanks for the tip on the metal.)

  18. Jennifer Turpen says

    What a great idea!  We have been toying around with some different ideas for organizing our spices and something like this just might work!  I think I might put chalkboard labels on the bottoms of the jars though… we'll see…  Thank you for sharing!

  19. Andrea Dacasa says

    hope we could find all this things here in Mexico!! but its really hard to find decent scrapbook paper! I can imagine looking more complicated stuff!! :S

  20. Cabinetryventurala says

    Love the idea…the chalk wall makes a beautiful suggestion as the containers may change and obviously so the labeling.

  21. My Indulgences says

    What a great idea!  This would be the perfect gift for a friend of mine that has all of her spices on the counter… she's running out of room!

    Thanks for the post!

  22. Sue Gerdes says

    Question…do u think I could bypass the metal and use magnetic paint. Think it would be strong enough? I heard somewhere that peeps paint magnetic and then chalkboard on top of it so they have both magnetic and chalkboard together.

    • says

      I’ve used the magnetic paint a couple of times, but I personally wouldn’t suggest it for this. My experience with the magnetic paint in the past is that no matter how many coats I use, I can only get it to hold up very lightweight items, like a magnetic clip holding one piece of paper. Anything heavier, and the magnet slides down the board.

    • says

      I’m not sure about the metal duct size. I just measured the flat portion of it to be sure it was large enough to fill my frame. The frame I used is a 16″ x 20″.

  23. says

    This is a great idea…I have a piece of metal I have been hanging on to for a long time not knowing really what to use it for….now I do! Thank you

  24. christina smith says

    Instead of using sheet metal AND chalkboard paint you could use metallic paint instead of the sheet metal. you could then use the chalkboard paint over top or just make/buy magnets with the names of the spices on them!

  25. Jean says

    Love this! I think the mural around it ties it all together. Is that a painted mural or decal? Thanks for this great idea.

  26. MARYJO says

    DEAR KRISTI:
    I LOVE YOUR CREATIVE MIND…YOUR WEBSITE IS MY “GO TO”…B/C YOU HAVE ALLOT OF DIFFERENT ASSIST LINKS, YOUR BLOG TUTORIAL AND YOUR PAGE IS EASY TO NAVIGATE. I’M VERY MUCH LIKE YOU…MY TO DO LIST NEVER GET DONE…I HAVE PILES OF PROJECT DIY’S EVERYWHERE…BUT HAVE LIMITED BUDGET, SKILLS, AND TOOLS AND LEST WE FORGET “KNOWLEDGE”…SO IT SITS THERE COLLECTING DUST AND I DESPERATELY NEED A MAN TO GET IT DONE “OR” LEARN TO DO IT MYSELF BUT THAT TAKES ALLOT OF TIME WHICH MEANS MY PILES LINGER…I’VE DEBATED ON WHETHER OR NOT TO START MY OWN BLOG APPROPRIATELY TITLED “GIRL HANDYMAN” CROSS THRU “MAN AND WRITE MAM” BUT LOOKING AROUND AT ALL MY UNFINISHED PROJECTS…WELL, I DON’T NEED TO TELL U…BESIDES, I DON’T KNOW HOW TO BLOG :(

    A FEW ?? ON FRIDGE FACELIFT AND WHERE YOU FOUND THOSE SWEET JELLIE JARS AS I DON’T EAT MUCH JELLY? ALSO, I WANTED TO SHARE A LINK INSTRUCTING ON HOW TO INSTALL MY OWN HOME DESIGN POT RACK AS I AM NOT IN A POSITION TO PURCHASE THESE OUTRAGEOUS OVER PRICED METAL HANGING FROM THE CEILING…CRAZY!! SO WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM WADE, TELL ME HOW YOU WOULD SUGGEST “A GIRL” LIKE ME PRESS ON TO HANG A POT RACK AS SIMPLE AS THIS ONE…I’VE LOOKED ALL OVER THE INTERNET FOR TUTORIALS WITH NO LUCK AND FRUSTRATION BUILDING…I HAVE A SMALL KITCHEN VERY MUCH LIKE YOURS, NO ATTIC ACCESS AND LIMITED SPACE FROM CEILING TO END OF PAN, ABOUT 30INCHES…IT WOULD WORK WITH A LITTLE TWEAKING ON SIZE HOOKS AND OTHER SMALLER PARTS…I’VE ALWAYS WANTED ONE AND WALL SPACE IS NOT AN OPTION….THANKS FOR ALL YOUR CREATIVE JUICES !!! MARYJO

    WADE CHI…..
    http://wadechi.swalrus.org/?p=830

  27. Linda says

    great spice board. I would suggest a caution for your Mom’s with kids and the magnets; incase they might come off after being glued. Several yrs. ago one of our church families 2 yr. old son found a magnet and swallowed it and died. It was such a heartache, I do like to send this message out to your web page. thank you

  28. Denise says

    !!! That is almost my kitchen. I’ve been planning a magnetic spice rack for a couple weeks and browsing tutorials. I think I’m just going to stick my magnetized spice jars on the side of the fridge and use some kind of paint to label the bottoms of the jars. But I’m cracking up because I have bird-on-branch decals on my kitchen walls to liven up my tiny apartment (probably about 834 sq ft, too). My spice shelf is a mess and the spot on the wall where I could mount a spice rack like yours is presently occupied by my bird decals and my WHITE BOARD. I guess there are only so many possibilities.

  29. Sue says

    I dont mean to be a spoil sport but REALLY!! You can buy a really nice carosell or standup spice rack with labels etc. etc. at Bed Bath And Beyond for 39.00 ( I just saw it there yesterday) OR you can go through all that work and make one yourself for 45.00 (cost of supplies on Amazon not counting the tin and the frame etc.) REALLY people lets get serious ; Sue oh dont forget the s+h and/or the gas to drive around looking to buy this stuff in local hardware stores to avoid the s+h,ing It,s cute but not THAT cute ;-)

    • says

      I think perhaps you’ve missed the point of what I do here. The very fact that anyone in the country can walk into BB&B, WalMart, KMart, Target, etc., and purchase one of those “nice” carousel or stand up spice racks for $39.00 is the VERY reason that I don’t want that mass-produced-looking, big-box-store junk in my house. Let me just suffice it to say that if that stuff qualifies as “nice” in your opinion, then we have very different definitions of the word “nice”. My goal is to make my home as unique as possible, filled with items that are custom made specifically for my home, while doing so on a reasonable budget. Not to fill it with cheap, mass-produced stuff that was made in China, sold at a big box store, and can be found in hundreds of thousands of homes across America. And if that means spending $20 more on a highly-customized, unique spice rack that was made just for my kitchen, then so be it.

      I’ll choose customized and unique any day over cheap and convenient, as can be seen my my home:

      http://www.addicted2decorating.com/before-and-after-small-kitchen-makeover.html

      http://www.addicted2decorating.com/my-tiny-condo-breakfast-room-makeover-before-and-after.html

      • Michelle says

        That was a great response. To many things made from China are not made to last. I to love to save a buck, but to creative is priceless.

      • Robin says

        Well said! I have a oak tower spice rack that spins but I plan on making this darling one and replacing it. Actually, I was just thinking what I can put in it when I recycle it in my craft room. Thanks for the great idea and tute!

  30. Michelle says

    That is a great idea. I too know how important space is, my home is 750 square feet. I have one question do you save Money by making it vs buying it at Ikea?

  31. Michelle says

    That is a great idea. I too know how important space is, my home is 750 square feet. I have one question do you save Money by making it vs buying it at Ikea? Thank you for sharing and for the wonderful pictures.

  32. Claire says

    What a unique and clever way to display and store your spices. Thank you for sharing your idea with us, especially the step-by-step instructions including photos. You did a fabulous job!

    Claire

  33. Anna says

    Love the look of this, but there’s a quicker way. Do the frame, insert plywood painted with chalkboard paint, buy rare neodymium magnets (available on ebay) with holes in the center. Use screws to attach each magnet to the painted board where you want each jar. Stick jars with metal lids to magnets. Done. Saves the time messing with the metal sourcing/cutting/gluing etc.

  34. says

    Great idea! I love to craft, and made a Magnet board out of an oil pan. It’s huge, but by hanging it on the wall it takes up little space for my embellishments and sewing materials.
    Maureen

  35. says

    I wish I had remembered this post and read the comments before trying this with magnetic paint! Ugh, there goes $20 and 3 hours. The magnets stick but if I accidentally touch one the wrong way, they all come toppling down. Now I need to get some metal like you did. I’m fitting a 9″ x 29″ space in the back of a shallow cabinet. Hopefully I can piece something together with these–big orange said their sheet metal wasn’t magnetic, so I’ll bring my magnet with me next time and look around myself. Thanks for all your tips!

  36. Geri says

    I love this idea! I’m using it as the starting point for my spice rack. I was able to find a small sheet of metal for $4 at Home Depot in the fasteners aisle and I’m baby food jars since they work out to $.50 a piece (but I had to spray paint the lids). My itty bitty kitchen needs all the help it can get. Thank you!

  37. Betsy Hartmann says

    I have too many spices for my lazy susan, too. Then I found a double stacked one that actually holds everything I need it to. I miss the old metal spice containers. My mother put up a magnetic knife rack on the wall and used that to keep them handy.

  38. wendy says

    hi Kristi,

    Could you ell me where you bought the jars and how much did it cost you?
    Loved your idea of Magnetic spice rack! thanks for sharing it!:)

  39. Monika R says

    Hi. I love how it looks. It’s definitely good for big kitchens as a decorative piece as much as functional. It seems to me though that you must have more spices hidden away perhaps in your pantry as this many jars is just bare minimum. I just invested in several lazy susans for my main spices in my tiny kitchen over the oven and pull out spice racks that hold about 6 spice jars each in my mini pantry (for just 2 $ at big lots!) it works great for me. Overall I love your project. :)

  40. Rae says

    I’ve been looking online everywhere for suggestions on how to keep the best before date of herbs and spices handy when decanting into new tins? I dont want to write it permanently on the tin as the date will change over the years.

    Any ideas anyone?

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