Using an old curtain and piece of glass (plus some decorations), you can make a pretty handy dry erase board, which I made into a calendar. I originally got the idea from this page (http://lifehacker.com/5873452), but have modified the design to accompany the supplies I have on hand.
This project can be quite green if you reuse materials. I reused the glass and curtain in this project, but the paper backgrounds can be recycled, as can the dowel and cardboard backing.
Step 1: Supplies
- Yarn or Cord
- A curtain panel (3' x 5')
- A piece of sheet glass (mine is 17" x 27")
- Colored felt or paper to make the grid background of the calendar
- A sheet of cardboard or foam presentation board that is the same size or larger than the glass sheet
- A 2' dowel rod
- Needle and thread
Step 2: Line Up the Glass to Be Folded Into the Curtain
The curtain I am using has loops at the top where the curtain rod would normally go through. I placed the glass sheet up against the top-left of the sheet. I fold the curtain over the front about 2 inches for a border. Next fold the curtain over from the other side. With my sheet of glass taller than wider the curtain can completely wrap around the glass. To make it easy to slide the glass in and out later I sewed the two folds together. Instead of cutting the extra sheet off I just folded it up so that the back of the calendar will have extra fabric and cushion the glass better.
Step 3: Cut Holes Along the Sides and Bottom and Weave Yarn or Cord in and Out of the Holes.
Cut holes all the way through the layers of fabric around the left, right, and bottom edges. I spread the holes out by about 3.5", with closer holes by the bottom corners. Weave the yarn or cord throughout the holes. The cordage both supports the glass and keeps the structure of the fabric frame together. I tied the end of the cord to the dowel, which I weaved through the loops at the top. This structure keeps together pretty well on its own, especially with the cord tied to the dowel.
Step 4: Cut Out a Viewport in the Sheet in Front of the Glass, Leaving a Frame Around the Edge
I outlined where to cut the sheet with a sharpie, then cut the rectangle out of the front sheet. Optionally, you can sew on some velcro to hold the top of the frame together. I had to cut the foam backing to the frame to fit the glass, so I removed it to measure the area were the calendar will be visible. Now it's time to brush up on math skills...
Step 5: Layout the Calendar on the Backboard, Glue It Down
Cut the felt into squares that will represent each day. The most weeks that will ever be needed is 6, so with 6 rows of 7 days, 42 day squares will be needed. I also put a header on the calendar for the current month, and the next and previous month. See the image to see what I mean. My squares ended up at 2" x 2". I had the month rectangle double the height of the day squares and five times the width. It ended up being 10.4" x 4.1" because of the gutter size that I decided on for the calendar. The rectangles to the left and right of the month area are 2" x 4.1". Layout and glue down the various shapes to make a generic calendar shape.
Step 6: Slide the Calendar Into the Frame and Hang It Up!
Place the glass over the calendar, and slide the two into the envelope created in the fabric frame. Slide the dowel into the top and tie the ends of the cords to the dowel. The calendar is done and ready to be drawn on or hung up!
Because I left the back of the frame board blank it can also function as a regular dry erase board when the calendar is not needed.