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Create your own organization station with additions such as a whiteboard calendar. (Republican Eagle photo by Danielle Killey)

Do it yourself: Corkboards

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Do it yourself: Corkboards
Red Wing Minnesota 2760 North Service Drive / P.O. Box 15 55066

Notebooks, pencils and backpacks are taking over the stores as July comes to a close and it's time to start thinking about heading back to school.

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That prospect might be dreaded by some and exciting to others - such as those headed off to college.

It also often means busier schedules for families. Corkboards, or bulletin boards, can help decorate walls while keeping you organized.

There are many ways to use the material, whether you've got someone headed back to school or not.

Corkboard organization station

Materials:

• Corkboard

• Calendar, whiteboard and/or notepad

• Adhesive (tape, glue)

You can buy plenty of things designed to keep you organized, but designing your own station can help you save money while also allowing you to customize.

Take a large plain bulletin board. Add on a paper or whiteboard calendar, notebook or whiteboard or anything that helps you keep track of appointments, trips, grocery lists and phone messages.

Leave space to use the corkboard for notes and photos.

Tips:

• Make sure to use strong adhesive, especially when adding heavier items such as whiteboards

• Measure the items you want on the corkboard station before gluing to configure them the best way possible

Corkboard shapes

Materials:

• Corkboard (roll of cork)

• Sharp utility knife

• Pen/marker

• Shape to trace

Designing a customized corkboard can be a fairly simple process.

First, decide on the outline you want. You can make simple shapes such as circles or stars or more complicated designs such as silhouettes of baseball players or ballerinas.

If you do choose something more detailed, make a pattern to trace onto the corkboard with a pen or marker.

Lay the cork flat and cut with a utility knife or sharp scissors.

You can paint or pin on details such as clothes.

Tips:

• Put something under the corkboard while cutting, such as a rubber craft mat

• Try to avoid very complicated shapes, which might not turn out or be difficult to cut

Fabric covered corkboard

Materials:

• Corkboard

• Fabric

• Adhesive

A simple way to decorate corkboards while keeping them functional is by covering them in fabric. They can also double as decoration.

Circular and small, square corkboards are becoming more popular, so you can use multiple boards in complementary or similar fabrics.

Just pull fabric taught and attach in the back or use spray adhesive and smooth.

Tips:

• Use lightweight fabric so pinning and hanging is easier

• Don't use thick glues on the front of the corkboard. That can make it harder to use thumbtacks or pins when it dries.

Decorated corkboard

Materials:

• Corkboard

• Paintable glue (such as Mod Podge)

• Sheet music, newspaper, scrapbook paper, etc.

• Paint

• Ribbon, trimmings

There are many other ways to dress up corkboards. Glue on decorative paper or sheet music with a thin glue and a paintbrush for an interesting background.

If you use a large framed bulletin board, the edges can be painted and trimmed in ribbons, crystals or fabrics.

Tips:

• Again, make sure your glue is thin enough that when it dries it will not prevent you from using pins and tacks.

• Wood frames may require several coats of paint for full coverage.

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Danielle Killey
Danielle Killey is the city reporter for the Republican Eagle, where she has worked since 2011. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a journalism degree.
(651) 301-7877
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