• Wendy Graham

Chalkboard table tops

Updated: Jan 17, 2019

A quick recap on the do’s and don’ts of a chalkboard finish. We recently completed a five meter table with a chalkboard finish to the top. We supplied a sample of the finish for sign off before production and all was approved.


The table was installed and looked amazing…… day one…… however once chalked several times the top behaved as a normal chalkboard does. A permanent chalk residue was left on the top , even more noticeable when a wet chalk was used. This was not what the client anticipated.


If this ‘scruffy’ look is what is desired then great…. but if the expectation is to be able to wipe it down and return it to the clean, matt, even finish that was first supplied then expectations need to be managed. Chalkboard finishes behave like the old chalkboards some of us remember from school.


What we should have done .


Supplied the client with a bigger sample of the finish, (we supplied A4,) and got them to use as they intended to and then clean it so they knew what to expect.


How we solved the issue .


Supplied a new removable top that could be used for the more formal meetings and removed for the creative ones to reveal the chalkboard top.


Quick tips.


Chalkboard is a painted finish and porous, not as water resistant as lacquer.


It’s not as durable as laminate/ veneer / lacquered surfaces and will scratch more easily.


Chalkboard finish will always have a residue left on the top, even when cleaned.


Think about users clothes , sleeves and cuffs, when using the table top .


It’s better for a vertical surface than a horizontal one.


Always supply a sample of the finish for sign off.




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