Monday, 20 January 2014

How To Create A Chalkboard Printable

Pin It!

Although I haven't specifically been asked how to create a chalkboard printable, I do get asked about some of the topics relating to it (such as where to get a chalkboard background , which fonts to use or how to make a printable). So I decided it would be a good idea to amalgamate those questions into one handy tutorial. Especially since chalkboard printables are awesome, and very "in" for creating art and graphics right now.

Free Chalkboard Background

The first thing you need if you are going to make a chalkboard printable is a chalkboard background (yeah, I know - obvious). Now, I could get really complicated here and tell you how to make it in Photoshop. But since not everyone can justify the cost of buying Photoshop, I'm going to keep things super simple and provide you with a free chalkboard background which you can download instead.

I have made the background A4 size, since the focus of this post is how to make a pretty printable with it.

Best Chalkboard Fonts

Next, you need some cool fonts which look authentically chalky. Being self proclaimed Queen of the Fonts, I have already written a post about the best chalkboard fonts. But here are my current favorites:

Borders And Banners

If you are going to be using an online editor like PicMonkey (which I will get onto in a minute), then you will find some free banners and borders available on the site. But if you are going to be using your own image editor, then you might want to download some to use on your printable. The following examples are actually fonts.

Create A Chalkboard Printable In PicMonkey

PicMonkey is my favorite free graphics tool. You can use many of the fonts and images without subscription, but if you do upgrade to their Royale package then you will have even more opportunity to create some great art.

Step one. Open my free chalkboard background in edit mode. Check out the 'Overlays' tab on the menu, and look through the corners, borders and other clipart until you feel inspired. For chalkboard art, I like to set the text colour to #FFFFFF (white) and slide the fade bar along to about 10%. This reduces the opacity, so that a bit of the background shows through the image.

Step two. Add some text. If you are feeling uninspired, you can browse through a website like Brainy Quote to find something which appeals to you. As with the overlays, I change the colour to white and then reduce the opacity.

Step three. Save your masterpiece to your computer.

Step four. That was easy! All that is left to do now is print out (and frame) your new work of art.

How To Create A Create A Chalkboard Printable In Photoshop

The main advantage of Photoshop is that you can save your image as a PDF once you're done, which makes it super simple if you want to share it with your readers. Otherwise, it isn't much different to creating an image with PicMonkey.

Step one. Add your frames, border or other pretty embellishments. There are some suitable shapes included with the software, but personally I prefer to use the ornament themed fonts which I linked to earlier in the post.

Step two. Set the color to white and reduce the opacity for a more authentic chalkboard look. To do the latter, right click on the relevant layer in the right hand menu. Choose "Blending Options", then slide the opacity bar until you are happy with the level of transparency.

Step three. Add the text. If you aren't sure how to install extra fonts on your computer, check out my tutorial. Repeat step two for the text you have added.

Step four. Save your file. If you want to share your creations with your blog readers, or you just want a more convenient format to print from, you can save the image as a PDF. If your file is still in PSD format then you will need to save it as a JPG first, before you can convert it into a PDF.

The resulting PDF file can be huge, so you may want to click on the 'compression' tab and reduce the image quality, especially if you are going to be uploading your printable for other people's use. The reduction in image quality is barely conceivable, but it makes a big difference to the file size.

Step five. Print your new artwork and frame it.

If you create your own chalkboard printable from my chalkboard background/tutorial and share it with your blog readers, a link back to this post will bring you good karma. But I'm not going to lose sleep if you use my chalkboard image without credit, it's just greatly appreciated. :-)

Don't forget to check the terms of use on any fonts that you use for your printable.


  1. I just love chalkboards! Thank you for all the wonderful information and those fonts are cool. I hope you will take a few minutes to stop by and visit me.

  2. What a great tutorial!!!
    Thanks for sharing

  3. I love this!!! Thanks so much. I was just looking for some chalkboard fonts the other day.

  4. This is a great tutorial! I would love it if you came and shared it at The Makers!

    ~Katie @ Upcycled Treasures

  5. This looks great with clear instructions - I need them as clear as possible ;)

  6. Thank you so much for sharing this! I have been wondering on how to do this for some time. This is very helpful!!
    Have a very happy and creative week!!
    hugs x, Crystelle
    Crystelle Boutique

  7. I love everything chalkboards {being a teacher and all}. Excellent tutorial!

    Thanks for linking up to Twirl and Take a Bow again! We love the good company at our party!

  8. This is really, really great! I made my first chalkboard for my computer background, but it took FOREVER. Thanks for sharing! :)

    P.S. - I would love it if you linked up at Do Tell Tuesday with the gals and me!

    Diane @ Vintage Zest

  9. Thank you for the chalkboard background!!
    -Gina from Always Savory

  10. Just made chalkboard banner's for my Etsy and blog yesterday. Love your post! Pinned and sharing on Sverve:)

  11. I'm totally obsessed with the chalkboard look!

  12. I found you from the link party at A Glimpse Inside...this is such a great tutorial! Thank you so much for providing the background. Definitely going to use this :)

  13. I love picmonkey! This is too cute =) I'd love it if you'd share this at my link party going on now!

  14. OMG I am so glad I stumbled upon this fab tut. I would love for you to share this fabulous post at our WIW Linky party. I hope you can join us!

    Ivy & Elephants

  15. Great tutorial! I was just asking someone about this the other day! Thanks for sharing it at Monday Funday!

  16. Wonderful tutorial! Thanks so much for this.
    Bonnie @ Our Secondhand House

  17. Love your printable and tutorial! Thanks so much for sharing it with all of us at Sewlicious Home Decor. Pinned to the party board!


  18. Such an informative post!!

    I am co hosting Fluster's Creative Muster Link Party!! Thanks so much for linking up!


  19. I love picmonkey and appreciate your tutorial and downloads- THANKS! What fun. Going to try it right now :)


Thank you for taking the time to leave me a comment. I try to respond to as many as possible. :)