This easy hack is too good not to share. This fun table keeps my daughter entertained for hours, and encourages her to draw and be creative! Anything to minimise screen time is a bonus in my books!
Initially, we were given a super funky and expensive kids table as a gift but the chairs seemed too high for Little Miss to safely get up and down. After a few falls and tears, I was on the lookout for a more practical table and chairs.
Then I came across this Latt children’s table with two chairs from IKEA. Hey, it was only $40! I didn’t quite like the look of the pine wood to be frank, but it was a good height for her age and affordable.
So here is what I did with it… Most of the items are from IKEA and Bunnings.
1. Painted the table top with black chalkboard paint
What a brilliant idea! Chalk has been my saviour, it doesn't create as much of a mess as crayons and markers, so if I can get Little Miss drawing with chalk I'm one happy mama! I bought a 250ml can of paint from Bunnings, however, it didn’t use up much paint at all, so I have heaps left over for another project. I used a foam roller suitable for gloss or oil based paint. (Tip: don’t use a napp roller as it leaves streaks).
After painting two coats, and waiting 20 minutes to dry between coats, this left a nice smooth finish. I didn’t use an initial primer coat because I’m lazy, but you could if you a perfectionist. If you don’t want to use paint, you could purchase a chalk board roll instead and stick it on the table top.
2. Added a rail for the paper
When Little Miss gets sick of the chalk, she can draw on an endless roll of paper! The roll is fixed to the table, so she can’t take it away! I used the Grundtal stainless steel rail from IKEA for $7.99 and screwed it on the side. It’s quite a large roll of paper (30 meters) so it lasts for ages!
3. Decorated it with stickers
Little Miss helped me stick Hello Kitty wall décor stickers all over the table to decorate it, but you could use any other stickers. The good thing is this is not permanent, so you can take them off whenever you want to change the theme, and it’s always good when the kids can get involved.
Where I went wrong:
I painted the coarse side of the table top thinking it would be better for the paint to stick on. However, I find that as a result it is a little too coarse. So when Little Miss writes on it with chalk, I need to use wet wipes to take it off which is super annoying. I would recommend purchasing a chalk board roll instead, like this one, and sticking it to the top before assembling it. It is also much quicker and cheaper than buying paint and a foam roller.
I didn’t want to spend too much on paint so I decided against painting the wood. However, after a few weeks I noticed despite her best attempts to draw on the paper, Little Miss was drawing on the wood with the markers! And well, even though they say washable they actually permanently stain wood, making the table look messy! Here’s a photo of what I mean:
So that’s when I decided to give it another revamp and paint it. Read about my revamp here.
Here is the breakdown of the items I used and the costs:
IKEA: Latt children’s table with two chairs, $39.99
IKEA: Grundtal stainless steel rail, 59cm, $7.99
BUNNINGS: White Knight Black Chalkboard Paint, 250ml, $14.90
IKEA: Mala drawing paper roll, 30m, $6.99
BUNNINGS: Foam roller, $4
Wall décor or other stickers for decoration, free (I already had these)
White tins for chalk and crayons, free (I already had these). I’m pretty sure IKEA sell something similar.
TOTAL COST: $73.87