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Build a Cork Memo Board Frame

As most things of this nature go, it all started with a crayon. A yellow crayon.

This crayon happens to be the EXACT color of a counter stool we bought from Pier 1 Imports for our little computer “nook”. The nook is a tucked right next to the stairwell and has a nice little built-in desk. This is the color I hope to use for the cork memo board frame we’re about to build…

SO! Can home depot color match a crayon, you ask? NO! They cannot!  I was told that…apparently a sample HAS to be AT LEAST the size of a quarter. Like this is common sense or something?!

So I asked the man…MAN! If I draw on a piece of paper with my yellow crayon a quarter-sized circle, can you work with that?

NO! They cannot! The sample is not to be even the slightest bit transparent. Making up rules as he went along, that guy.

So with the list of what I cannot use to color match growing larger and larger by the minute, I decided to take matters in my own hand and color match it by sight.

Like a color matching by sight super-hero, I arrived at this color. ATOMIC TANGERINE! I’m not even surprised by the name, really.

OK! I’ve got some scrap 1×2’s that I’m going to use for my frame. The cork board square is 12×12 and you can get them here. You’ll notice the 3-star rating and reviews…something something flimsy cork board blah blah. A lot of people are struggling with hanging and re-hanging the cork board…because it RIPS! …because it’s CORK!

By building a wooden frame around the cork, we’re going to make all of this controversy go away. No cork shall be ripped today. Not on my watch!

I cut 4 pieces from my 1×2’s at 13″ with a miter saw set to 45 degrees.

Here’s a top view. 13! On the money.

To keep the cork held in, I’m using these scrap pieces of wood that I ripped from a previous project. This isn’t really critical, it just hides the cork from the sides. You’ll see what I mean in a few steps.

Here’s my first miter cut. I’m going to duplicate this three more times!

As you can see, the top left corner of this cork board ripped off when I removed it from Rachel’s office when we lived in Chicago…woops indeed.

But this 2″ wood frame will cover it up perfectly! A real-life edit>undo, if you will.

By using these smaller scraps, I hide the cork board completely.

I ran out of wood at this length so I joined two smaller scraps together using this ridiculous clamping method. Never underestimate the scrap pile!

There’s a lot of fancy ways join and make your wooden frames perfectly square. But I’m just going to use glue and eye them up the old fashioned way. Or maybe it’s just the lazy way. Whatever! Don’t be like that dude! This is a no judgement zone.

Lookin’ good frame, lookin’ good. An observation, not a judgement!

OK! Let’s let that dry for a bit.

I want to add a little bit of pizzaz to the nook. So I grabbed these hooks while I was at Home Depot. Let’s paint them, too!


Three holes…into my work table. But why?

For my hooks!

Mixing things up a bit…

And I get to painting. Ingenious! Or genius? Seriously though which one?

First coat down! I’ll let these dry and then throw on a second coat.

The wood glue has been drying for about 30 minutes, so I went ahead and used Elmers wood filler to fill in any gaps. You can paint right over this stuff, it’s great! Stain…not so much.

I’m going to let this dry…so much waiting tonight. It’s awful.

Once dry, sand it with a medium grit paper to make sure it’s silky smooth. Like so!

I flip the frame over and lay out the back pieces of scrap wood with the cork to make sure it fit in there snugly. It’s snugly.

I squeeze a thin bead of glue down the center of my side pieces and…

Using a ridiculous combination of cans and clamps, I let the glue set in for about 30 minutes. This is truly a quick afternoon scrap-pile project.

As soon as the glue dries I throw on a coat of paint. I’m not messing around today, corky!

Dry fitting the cork board to see where I should glue it.

I mark out where theres a chunk missing. Won’t be needing glue there!

Oh hey gorilla glue! You’re late!

Pro-tip! Respect the gorilla glue! This stuff EXPANDS. Once you master the gorilla glue you are a true DIY masta. Go in the center with a THIN bead, and…

Use random objects to “clamp” the cork board down.

While that stuff sets and expands into my living room, I’m going to install the hanging hardware. I mark the centerline of the frame…

And mark where I want this brass sawtooth hanger.

I pre-drill some holes with my SMALLEST drill bit. I think it’s the 1/16″…

And press firmly into the wood with my thumbs. If you have weak thumbs, phone a friend! REGIS!

See what I mean! Not only did I put glue where I specifically marked to NOT GLUE, but it expanded in less than 5 minutes. I am not worthy of the GG…

And there we have it. Wanna hang?

If so, then this is all you need!

But first! Remember those hooks?

I pre-drill the drywall with a 5/16″ bit to accommodate the heavy duty anchors. Fun tip- If you put painters tape under where you drill the drywall, it should catch most of the mess! Once my daughter gets old enough I’ll teach her how to clean up the rest of the mess! Parenting is fun!

I repeated that times three, and there we go!

The nook is really starting to POP!

Once the gorilla glue has dried overnight, the I’ll bring out some thumb tacks and paper for the cork board COMMAND CENTER!

Oh would you look at that! I quickly went into the kitchen to grab a drink of water, turn around and what do I see?! Out with the flannel and in with the floral purse! This is how you can tell all of your hard work has paid off and you’ve got a successful DIY on your hands!

This was a fun one, let me know if you have any questions. Unless it’s about GG, I AM NOT YET WORTHY!


One stay at home dad (to be) conquers DIY and Diapers

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