Today's favorite thing is kind of crafty. It's called magnetic primer for painted walls.
|Photo borrowed from The Interwebs since our project isn't done yet ;-)|
Awhile back, my wife and I decided to renovate a small nook in our dining room into a "Family Central" with a small writing desk, a laptop, and some sort of wall-mounted paper-hanging device to keep track of the various bits of paper and things we need to track the family's activities and obligations. We didn't really want a chalkboard wall, a whiteboard, or a cork board, so what could we use?
I'd remembered seening a Rustoleum product used on This Old House that was a primer filled with iron shavings. You simply paint several coats on the wall and then go over it with your regular latex paint. The end result is a section of wall that looks entirely normal except magnets will stick to it. Brilliant!
It turns out the Rustoleum product has pretty bad reviews. People report it is hard to work with, requires paint thinner cleanup, and magnets don't stick very well. I found another product by MagnaMagic that's much more expensive but had much better reviews and cleans-up with water. Win-win!
Unfortunately, we haven't finished the project yet, so I can't show you a photo. But I did put a little on a paint stirrer and I was impressed by its magnetic power after only a single coat dried. I think it's going to work really well!
You could really get creative with this stuff. Paint small sections of it on objects and you can stick magnets to them. Make children's toys and learning devices with little sheets of wood. I've considered putting it on a couple of doors at kid height so my daughter will stop putting scotch tape all over the woodwork. I've also thought that a few carefully-placed stripes of it horizontally all the way around a teenager's bedroom or a classroom might make it easier and less-damaging to hang posters and artwork without thumbtacks or tape. Every wall would be a hidden gallery wall.
Disclaimer: All opinions on these products are my own and I've purchased these items myself or received them as gifts from friends and family. I don't even receive a kickback from Amazon for the links, so feel free to buy from your favorite local kitchen supplier. They'll appreciate the business!