Updated: March 24, 2023
My cork board wall in our playroom happened!
I got my husband on board once he started helping me with it and saw how great it turned out. And you will love this fun project too!
Your Guide To Creating a Large Cork Board Wall For Kids’ Creations, Or Your Home Office!
We have a little craft nook carved out in our playroom for the kids where they do all their creating. I wanted to find a cute way to hang up their creations (besides taped to the door!).
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I had a few cork board ideas – but a regular sized bulletin board seemed a little dinky for this space. I wanted something oversized that they could fill up. Why not DIY a large cork board wall?
Our before: (future cork board wall is the wall behind the toy shelf)
I did find some really nicely done cork boards that I considered (shop around below), but once I had the idea in my head of turning the whole wall into a cork board wall I couldn’t stop.
See The Large Bulletin Boards I Found:
Supplies For A Cork Board Wall:
This cork board wall can be completed in an afternoon! You will want a friend to make this project easier. Holding the cork roll up while hammering it in is awkward for one person. Measure how many square feet your wall is (length times width), so you know how much cork you will need!
- A large roll of cork – this is the key! this particular roll of cork I used is 1/4″ thick – you need it thick enough for pins to be able to hold things and be sturdy (pins won’t stick through flimsy cork). If your wall is smaller, you could use these large cork board pieces. I prefer the larger sized rolls of cork, so you have as few seams as possible.
- Extra long brass tacks is what I used to attach the cork to the wall. Those were the perfect size and blended right in because they are the same color as the cork! You could also try furniture tacks perhaps? But make sure these are similar in color to cork and at least 3/4″ in length.
- Hammer for inserting the brass tacks
- very sharp scissors – if you use dull scissors on cork it can cause it to crumble or cut crookedly.
Something To Note About Attaching The Cork
The tacks that will hold your art and other things to the cork will not go into the drywall. But because I am attaching the cork to the wall using extra long brass tacks, I will end up with holes in the wall when I decide to take the cork board wall down.
Either way, this wall is going to need painting one day, so I am okay with some small holes. It’s such a small wall that with a little spackle and paint it won’t be an issue.
(Another idea: if this is a long term project, they do sell spray adhesive I considered putting on the cork. However, I didn’t want to destroy the drywall when I took the cork down. I would rather just spackle up a few holes. I believe if you use adhesive you will have to retexture your drywall when you take the cork off- so unless this is a long term project I wouldn’t go this route.)
Tip: Take a look at light switches, thermostats, etc. on the wall- you will be cutting around them!
Another Tip: Find out if your ceilings and wall edges are straight with your level. Don’t skip this step – if you start out by lining up the cork flush with a crooked ceiling, you will notice that the seams of the cork rolls are crooked once the cork board wall is installed.
This wall – where the bookshelf sits – is where my cork board wall is going:
1. Starting Out Straight
Plan where you will put your first roll of cork by measuring how wide your cork roll is and how wide the wall is. You will want to start towards the middle and work your way out. This way you can avoid ending up with a tiny 3″ roll of cork on the end, which won’t look great.
Start out by drawing a vertical line center of the wall where the edge of your first roll of cork will line up. Use a level to make sure it is perfectly straight.
Cut out the first roll, taking into account any crooked ceilings, and give it in extra few inches that you will cut off later.
2. Keeping Things Level and Attaching The Cork
This is where you need a second person to help!
Lining the edge of your cork up to the top or bottom, start rolling the cork down or up the wall. Since my ceiling was sloped, I started at the bottom and rolled upwards.
This was awkward to hold the cork roll up over my head, and I would have preferred starting at the top if it was not sloped! If your ceiling is mostly flat, I recommend starting at the top.
Every 1.5-2 feet I stuck in an extra long brass tack to hold the cork into the wall. It went in easily to the cork, and I used my hammer to get it all the way into the drywall. The head of these tacks are smaller than normal tacks, and about the same color as the cork. They blend in perfectly.
If the sides of the wall are seen like mine are, make extra sure to line the edges of the wall up with the cork evenly.
When I got to the top of the wall, I had an inch extra leftand I carefully cut this straight to line flush with the ceiling. You will need very sharp scissors to cut the cork straight. I do not recommend using dull scissors or it will not be a straight line!
3. The second roll
The first piece is the most time consuming. By the time you get to the second roll, you will just be making sure it is lined up with the first cork roll. This is why it’s so important you start out straight!
The seam between the two cork rolls can be seen, but are not noticeable. Can you spot it?
Special Notes About Your Cork Board Wall
For electrical outlets, thermostats or any other objects you have to trim around, you will want to turn off the electricity, and then unscrew the cover of the object. Roll the cork over the object and tack it into the wall. Then, taking your scissors, gently cut into the center of the object and slowly around, taking great care not to cut too far out around the object.
When I cut out around the thermostat, the edges were jagged and not straight. When I screwed the cover of the thermostat back on, it covered all the jagged edges and looked flush.