We re-painted and re-covered a thrift store corkboard, then embellished it to make a holiday display.
hot-glue gun and glue sticks
corkboard (we found a secondhand one that cost just a few dollars)
red paint (sample size will do) we used Lowe's Valspar color: Claret
piece of burlap (enough to cover cork)
child's wooden blocks spelling out "happy holidays"
all-purpose adhesive spray
hanging hardware (if corkboard doesn't already have it)
box of pushpins
Sand down the corkboard's wood frame. Wipe it clean, then apply a coat of red paint and let it dry. Add a second coat and let that dry completely.
Use the cork as a template for the burlap — cut it to fit the inside of the wood frame. You may want to cover the frame with newspaper or painter's tape so you don't get glue on it. Spray the adhesive on the cork and lay the burlap on top. Smooth it outward with your hands.
Cut ribbon to fit exactly around the burlap edge so it touches the wood frame. Cut each piece of the ribbon on a 45-degree angle to ensure the corners will match up. Use hot glue to adhere the ribbon to the burlap and board underneath it.
Place the blocks in the center of the corkboard, just below the ribbon. Use measuring tape to center properly. (If using the words "happy holidays," center in the first "P" and between the "I" and "D.") Glue the blocks down onto the burlap.
Attach D-hooks to the back of the wood frame if the board doesn't already have a way to hang it. String twine on the hooks, back and forth a few times to give it thickness. Use pushpins to hang up the cards.
Joanne Palmisano is the author of Salvage Secrets (W.W. Norton, September 2011). Visit her blog, also called Salvage Secrets.