Updated: Oct 31
Blakely loooooooves to color and draw, pretty much like every other toddler out there. When I was revamping the playroom I told her I was going to get her a place to draw and she lit up and said "like an easel?!" I didn't even know she knew what that was. I smiled and told her that was exactly what I meant and she said, "that would be sooooo nice!" That's where my search of "how to make a DIY easel at home on a budget" came into play. I would love to take credit for the idea but I found the inspo on Pinterest but the blog I found had a lot of out dated links. The instructions were extremely helpful but I needed to do a little research on where to find the exact items required to build the roller set-up.
What you need from IKEA:
RÄCKA curtain rod, black, 28-47" $1.99
BETYDLIG wall/ceiling bracket, black x2 $1.50
RAFFIG finials, 1 pair, black $3.00
Optional for the marker baskets
Piece of wood or metal (I used a 36" piece of metal from HomeDepot) $4.99
Black spray paint
FIRST – if you are painting the metal piece black, paint that and allow it to dry. You will see that in the supplies, I simply used black spray paint.
Hang your curtain rod – hang at whatever height you would like and I hung mine roughly 32 inches across. The paper roll that I ordered (linked above) is 30 inches wide, which is where I came up with that width. One thing to note on the height is that it will stick out from the wall a decent amount, so I would recommend going high enough not to be hitting it with your head.
Put your paper roll on your curtain rod.
Now you just have to hang the wood piece. What I did was unroll the paper then laid the metal piece over it and we screwed into it on both ends NOT ON THE PAPER. So make sure your screws don’t go into where the paper will feed through. You also need to leave some slack in their so that you can kind of pull it out to refeed paper through from time to time.
Hang the bar with buckets
I love that this DIY wall mounted easel is such a simple yet good looking aspect to our playroom, it allows the kids to have fun but it's not another item that takes up space.
One thing I am asked frequently on social media is ‘how do I keep my kids from coloring on the walls?’ which the short answer is so far they haven't and if they do ... they do.
My 2.5 year old is a bit of a wild child, so I don’t currently store markers in the baskets. She has to ask for them – so if you are worried about that, don’t store them there. If marker or crayon does get on the wall on accident, one wipe of a magic eraser, or honestly even a baby wipe for marker takes it right off, so I am not overly concerned about it. Make sure they are washable markers and crayons and you will be fine! (Plus when I did the update and painted the wall I used a satin finish which was recommended for kids playrooms so it's easy to clean)
In addition to the easel I wanted to make a couple small updates to bring color and dimension to their space. I've been dying to add a rainbow to the playroom but I didn't want to paint it myself. I was worried i would be too type A and want the arches to be perfect. I found this etsy shop when I designed Savannah's nursery. They create stunning wall decals that are SO easy to apply. I am obsessed with how it turned out!
In regard to toy storage, I decided to switch out the previous rainbow colored canvas bins for a more sturdy, woven basket. When the kids would tug on the canvas bins they started to get warped in shape and it was starting to test my OCD personality ...iykyk..
Earlier in the month, when I visited a friend's house, she showed my her nursery and I immediately noticed her bamboo pull down shades. They're cord free, perfect for kids bedrooms or playrooms, and I love that it filters the light without completely blacking it out.
Wanting a little more color, I painted a beautiful green (bahia grass- by PPG at Home Depot) half way up and it was the perfect shade. I debated between a darker green, which was more olive in tone, but Josh actually picked this one because he wanted the brighter color and I couldn't be happier with how it turned out.
I'll probably still adjust some of the setup but overall I love how this slight face lift really brought more color and life to our playroom. Now it's not just a blah grey room, it stands out from the rest of the house and puts a smile on my face whenever I walk past it. I know this is a simple project for most but I have been loving DIY projects. There's a certain satisfaction when you do something yourself and now I'm onto the next one..... what room will I do next??