Published On July 31, 2018 | Last Updated August 13, 2020
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A pretty DIY memo board is a great way to keep yourself organized.  Perfect for a home command center, or even a dorm room, it’s a great way to leave notes and reminders for yourself and others.

But memo boards don’t have to be boring!  Check out how I made this custom dry-erase board from an old picture frame. Get inspired to make your own memo board to match your style.

How to Turn a Picture Frame Into a Pretty DIY Memo Board

Materials To Make a Dry Erase Memo Board

Make a memo board from a picture frame

Once you’ve gathered the materials, it’s just a few simple steps to make your own DIY dry erase memo board.

1.  Paint the Memo Board Frame

To start, take apart your picture frame.  You’re going to paint the frame any color you want.

Go outside on a dry, calm day and apply a coat of spray paint.  I used Oxford Blue in satin finish.

Paint a custom memo board

If you don’t have old picture frames lying around the house, you can find tons of them in thrift stores.  It doesn’t have to be pretty. Just find a sturdy one that you can fix up.  Choose a size appropriate for the space where you want to use it.

2. Choose a Background for the Dry Erase Board

When choosing a background material for your DIY memo board, don’t be afraid to think beyond basic white.  If you want white, you could just buy a whiteboard.  The background is the perfect place to show off your personal style.

Options I considered were burlap, canvas, wrapping paper, and a paper nautical chart.  Before deciding, I wrote on the glass from the frame and laid it over the backgrounds to test the readability.

fabric map and roll of wrapping paper
Consider different paper and fabric options for your memo board.
writing with marker on a dry erase board
Test how easy or hard it is to read writing over the background material.

There was an unexpected bonus of using the map as my background.  The latitude and longitude grid lines help to keep my writing straight when using the dry erase markers!

3. Cut Background to Fit

Lay the glass from the frame over your background for your memo board.  Trace around the edge of the glass, and use the mark as a cutting guide.

Dry erase DIY memo board ideas
Trace the glass to create a cutting guide on the background material.

If your background has a pattern on it, like the chart I used, you can move the glass around to find the section that looks best.

Once you have your cutting lines, cut the background to the right size with a pair of scissors.

4. Assemble the DIY Memo Board

When the paint is dry and the background is cut, clean the glass before assembling your memo board. Use a window cleaner and allow it to dry completely before laying it on your background.

Then, insert the cut background just as you would insert a photo.

Now your pretty dry erase board is ready to hang anywhere!

5. Share Memos, Quotes and More!

A message board is a great place for writing reminders, to-do lists or schedules.  It can also be a way to communicate with your busy family or share an uplifting thought.  I often post a “Thought of the Week” or inspirational quote on mine.

Make a dry erase memo board

Use a dry erase marker to write anything you want on your new pretty memo board.  It will wipe right off, and you can use it over and over. (I suggest getting a dry erase board eraser rather than using a paper towel to wipe off the writing.)

More Thrifty Ideas

If you like this project, you’ll love some of my other thrifty DIY creations. Be sure to check out:

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