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How To: Make Graphic Cork and Leather Hanging Memo Boards

by on May 29, 2013

Capree Kimball

After recently completing our office makeover, I realized I needed somewhere to put all those random little notes and lists and other office-y bits. You know, something people like to call a “memo board”. After looking around, the only options appeared to be giant rectangular boards, emphasis on giant. And rectangular. Since I like to keep things a little quirky (and colorful and covered in pattern), I decided to make my own!       

Wall hanging which are made of cork and designed to look good.Capree Kimball

This is an easy afternoon project for just about any skill level. So, let’s grab some supplies and hop to it!


Several items laid out to be used in crafts, like cork, ribbon, and glue.Capree Kimball

1. cork trivets (2 per memo board — I got mine from IKEA)

2. painter’s tape (contact paper or a stencil will work as well)

3. acrylic paint

4. clear craft glue

5. leather cording (you could also use ribbon, cotton cording, etc.)

6. foam paint brush

Optional: Xacto knife and ruler (if you’re planning to get fancy with your design)


Blue tape is striped on a cork board.Capree Kimball

1. Tape off your design, rubbing and sealing the edges of the tape well to prevent as much paint-bleed as possible. Same goes for contact paper if you’re using it (like I did here). If you’re gonna get fancy with your design and use a craft knife, you can cut directly on the cork itself.

A white brown and blue painting that has some black smudges.Capree Kimball

2. Using the foam paint brush, apply the paint to the open cork areas first by dabbing (to get the paint in all the nooks and crannies) then brushing. If you’re painting the edges of your memo board a contrasting color, you can do it now or at the end. I chose to paint the edges of both trivets now.

Note: Depending on the color you use, you may need to apply more than one coat. If so, just wait until the first coat is dry, then go for it! 

A round cork has a pink ribbon on it.Capree Kimball

3. Once the paint is dry, flip the memo board over. Cut a length of cord, about 9 inches, and create a loop. Place the loop where you’d like your board to hang, then staple it in place. Grab the clear craft glue and apply it generously to the backside of the memo board, as well as underneath the loop.

A circular piece of corkboard has a loop for hanging it at the top.Capree Kimball

4. Take the second trivet and place it on top of the exposed glue, lining it up with the edges of the first trivet. Now, grab a large, flat, heavy object to set on top. This could be a box full of books or rocks, etc. I used a box of leftover tile from our kitchen makeover. Whatever you use, set it on top and leave it there while the glue dries, which will take a few hours.

A corkboard has black horizontal stripes and a hanging loop.Capree Kimball

5. Once the glue is dry, remove your big heavy object, flip the memo board over, and admire your handiwork. Voila! You just made a mini hanging memo board! Now go make a bunch more!

Ornament with triangular design, ornament with stripes, and ornament with a x.Capree Kimball

An illustration of three circular haning memo boards with pencils and a bear figurine below.Capree Kimball

Happy crafting!

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