Magnet boards are fun for kids and useful for adults, so I thought we’d take a look at some simple DIY magnet board ideas.
My Studio Magnet Wall
This magnet wall is made of two sheet metal panels and measures about seven feet wide and eight feet tall. It’s perfect for organizing projects I’m working on and fun for the grand-kids when they visit. It also doubles as a dry erase board (most unpainted metal surfaces will work with dry erase markers as long as the metal doesn’t begin to rust and get pitted like the one in the second image). It’s installed with adhesive caulk. Because of the outlet there was a bit of cutting and measuring to do, but basically I just applied the caulk to the wall, put the panels in place, and then used a J roller to make sure there was good contact between the mated surfaces. Planning took about 30 minutes and installation took 25. It cost about $100.
The magnet board below is just a hunk of old sheet metal. Installation was easy, I bent over the edges and screwed it to the wall. I like the stained and scratched look of this board, but you could do the same thing with a new sheet of metal.
Washing Machine Top
This one is installed outside our laundry room. Our washer died, so I ripped it apart for loose parts. I figured the top was perfect for a magnet board. Installation was easy. I mounted a piece of 2×4 to the wall and then mounted the salvaged metal to the board with a couple screws. It measures around 24 inches square.
Here’s an idea I love but don’t have a place to install. Get your hands on an old pickup truck tailgate and mount it to a wall or fence. I’d love to see this on a child care center playground.
Here’s another one I think would look awesome on a playground or in a playroom. It’d offer an eye catching visual and a lot of surface space for magnet play.
OK, one more idea I love but haven’t had a chance to try. Salvage an old car or truck door, remove the glass, and mount it for magnet play.
Muffin Tins and Cookie Sheets
Muffin tins and cookie sheets are easy to get your hands on and easy to mount to a wall or fence (or just plop on a tabletop). I like the look of the old ones, but you could use new shiny ones if you preferred. Oil drip pans, like the one mounted to the brick wall below, are also another great option.
You can also have a magnet board custom made. The one below was made by wrapping a piece of exterior plywood with sheet metal. It was then mounted to a fence. This costs a bit more than simply adhering the metal to a wall, but in some situations–like mounting to a fence–it’s the better choice.
A Couple More Ideas
Here’s a couple magnet-and-metal based ideas we used for displaying pictures from granddaughter Rowan. The first one is simply lengths of metal conduit attached to a wall. The second image is the same basic idea using narrow strips of sheet metal. Both these ideas are inexpensive and easy to install.
All of these ideas are pretty simple to implement if you have basic DIY skills and some basic tools. They are also all pretty budget friendly unless you find yourself yearning for a magnet wall made with the door of a vintage Lamborghini. We’d love to read your magnet board ideas and see pictures in the comments. You can check our Webshop if you’re looking for magnet play materials.