Ballard Designs Memo Board Knock-Off

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Ballard Memo Board Knock Off

Ok, so I am sure that like many of you with even the slightest of DIY inclination, you maybe saw this great memo board in the recent Ballard Designs catalog and said “I can SO make that”…(and did you think, pay $49 for this? Really?)



But, more than that, for YEARS I have been struggling with how to make my kitchen desk more useful. I had decided recently to make two smaller bulletin boards for each of my school age son’s school/homework/activity “notices” so that I don’t always forget it’s “pajama day” or that the President Report is due. (I have learned the hard way missing Pajama Day is a BIG deal!). So, as you can see, the big obstacle to using this wall space has always been the outlet smack in the middle of the wall.


Desk Area in Kitchen

Then suddenly I realized since there was another outlet just on the other side of the desk, I didn’t really need that outlet and since I had an artist canvas leftover from an event I designed, I had everything I needed on hand to just copy the Ballard Memo Board on a larger scale then I had planned.

I started with an 18×24″ standard artist canvas (from Michaels, they were BOGO so I paid maybe $4?), and I have tons of burlap on hand as I used it throughout the holidays on my tables.


diy ballard canvas knock off

I did cut down some Foam Presentation Board (from Staples?) and just quickly glued it in the back of the canvas to give the fabric enough weight to hold thumbtacks. (sorry apparently I didn’t photograph that! if you have a question just email me).

I cut the fabric down to size (about 2 inches larger then the canvas) and stretched the burlap over the canvas and used my staplegun to hold it in place.

The I added upholstery tacks (from Joann’s) and tapped them in with a rubber hammer. Spacing those was the hardest part of the project (and it wasn’t hard!) so I just started in the corners, then added them in the center and then filled them in equally.


lining up upholstery tacks

I hung it up on two little nails so I can easily pull it down whenever I need to, like if we HAD to use the outlet. {If so I think it means we just have way too many cell phones and gadgets}

Easy! I guess I spent less then $10 when it was all said and done, and it took maybe 30 minutes once I gathered all the supplies. Best of all, I can keep the kids’ school stuff straight –or at least attempt to! Pajama Day is Friday, I am ON IT this year….


Ballard Memo Board Knock Off

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