I actually installed this cork board over a year ago, around the same time I made the stair tread shelves. I never shared the details of the cork board, because I considered it a project fail. We have been using it to display the kids artwork. It was certainly functional, but not really a post-worthy example of my DIY work. But I have finally fixed it and am ready to share.
The idea was simple enough. I installed 9 cork tiles to form a 36 x 36″ grid on the wall. I covered the cork with a 36″ x 36″ aluminum grate from Home Depot. I fastened the grate with screws through the cork into the wall. It looked great for a few months, then the cork tiles started shifting. Apparently the 9 mounting squares on the back of each cork square was not enough to keep them in place. Not sure if the semi-gloss paint they were adhered too or the moisture in the laundry room caused the issue. But the cork tiles were falling off the wall under the aluminum grate. They were all askew and just recently the bottom middle tile fell off completely.
I knew there had to be an easy fix, but I just couldn’t figure it out. Then Sherry, from Young House Love, shared her quick and easy fabric covered cork tiles and I had the answer. Sherry smartly used duct tape to hold her cork tiles together. Simple.
I took everything off the wall, including some of my wall paint…the mounting squares that came with the cork stuck to the wall better than the cork. With the cork down, I laid my tiles out on the floor and used a generous amount of duct tape on the seams to hold them together. Yes, I happened to have teal duct tape on hand. Why buy grey when you can have teal?
Once the cork was taped together, I flipped it over and put the grate over top. I held it up to the wall and used a couple pushpins to hold it in place temporarily. I reattached my cork board creation to the wall with screws and finish washers. The finish washers can make any old screw look classier.
Now I expect the cork boards to stay in place and this project is finally post-worthy. The quatrefoil pattern on the aluminum is simply beautiful. It leaves plenty of surface area in the holes to insert pins to the cork. I love how the raw cork peeks through. From the side you also see the raw cork tiles sandwiched between the wall and the aluminum.
I am so glad it is fixed up, because we are using it for “basement central”. We are pinning up all our finish samples for the basement project. I even pinned up a flooring sample. Obviously a simple push pin would not do, so I cut the top off a ziploc bag, slipped the floor sample inside, and then pinned the bag up with two pushpins. (Details on basement finishes coming soon!)
I love Pinterest, but there is still something marvelous about real-life pinning. You get the visual and tactile experience. Our newly revived pin board will soon be overflowing with ideas for the basement. Don’t worry, we’ll leave some room at the bottom for the kids to pin up their artwork.