Evan’s Room Makeover Tutorial

I’m so glad everyone likes how I painted Evan’s room with the magnetic road.  I love reading all of the comments!  I’ve put together this tutorial to show you what I did.  To see the whole room, click here.

I’m going to apologize in advance for this product heavy post.  I never want to be one of those blogs where you can’t tell where the advertising stops and the blog post begins.  I do however want to show you the products that I purchased for this project, most of which I purchased on Amazon. That being said, I have become an Amazon Associate, meaning that if you click any of my product links and purchase the product, I get a commission to help me fund further craft projects.  Don’t hate me for it OK? 🙂

Now onto our project!

Materials (with product links):
-1 gallon blue paint
-1 gallon green paint
-1 quart white paint
-1 quart magnetic paint (Wall Magnetic Paint – Magprime-1 Qt Wall Magn Paint or Rust-Oleum 247596 Magnetic Primer)
-large roller
-small roller
-any other brushes, drop cloths, buckets, or paint trays you find necessary
-tape (Frog Tape 82011 Pro Painters Masking Tape, Green 1-Inch by 60-Yards)
-laser level or long regular level
-ruler or tape measure
-pencil
-1 inch flat head paint brush
-wooden cars
-magnets (Magcraft NSN0573 3/8-Inch by 1/8-Inch Rare Earth Disc Magnets, 30-Count)
-hot glue gun
-fabric scraps (felt and other)

Step 1: Put up your tape – Figure out how high up you want your road.  I used the bottom of the window as a starting point.  Make sure to check both sides of the window… mine was not level for some reason, so the taping on one half of the room was a little closer to the ground than the other half.  Annoying right?  But you can’t tell.  The distance between the top of the higher piece of tape and the bottom of the lower piece of tape is 7 inches.  I used a laser level to get everything really straight and marked it with a pencil.  You can use something else, but it may be more difficult.

***The dotted line – I forgot to include this when I did the project until later.  Now, however would be the best time.  There are a couple of ways to do this part.  If you want to get it done quickly, you can just put up a third strip of tape in the middle and seal it the same as the others.  If you are a perfectionist, then you can attempt to cut small strips of tape and space them evenly across the middle of the road to create the line.  Keep in mind that you will need to seal each one (see step 2).  I opted for the easier method.  See a photo in step 4.***

Note: I started my project with white walls.  If your walls are not white, you will want to paint the area that is going to have the road on it white and let it completely dry before you start anything.  Check the tape manufacturer’s suggestions on how to use tape on newly painted walls.

Step 2: Sealing the Tape – The green tape you see is this stuff called  Frog Tape. This is the first time I have ever used it, and it worked surprisingly well on my textured walls.  It’s treated with something that seals the tape when it gets wet with paint.  Be sure to follow the instructions found here.  I would do this even if you don’t have textured walls.  It gave me some really great lines!

As per the Frog Tape site’s instructions, push the tape into all the “nooks and crannies” on the wall.  They recommend using a 5-in-1 tool to press it down, but I found that started to scrape the tape.  I used my nylon pan scraper from pampered chef instead.  LOL!  It worked really well.  If you don’t have one you can find something else around the house.  You need to get really up close and personal with your wall.  I can tell the parts where I got lazy and did not push the tape into every nook.

Next, you want to take a white paint that is the same or close to the color of your white wall and use a brush to paint along the edges of the tape.  This will activate the tape sealer and prevent the colored paint from seeping through.  Let it dry completely.

Step 3: Paint your colors – Once your white paint is dry use your paint brush to paint over it again with the color you are going to use, then fill in the rest with your large roller.  See the picture below.  Do the same with the green.

Step 4:  Magnetic Paint – Here you can see the third stripe of tape for the dotted line.  Make sure to get your paint mixed at the store before using it.  Shake it and mix it up again really well before and during painting.  If you don’t mix it well, all of the metallic paint will sink to the bottom of the can, and you will get bad results.  Take your small roller and paint 3 coats, letting the paint dry between each coat.  Follow the instructions on the can.  Since this is a primer, I was going to paint a gray paint over it, but I liked the asphalt look.  You can do what you like.

I used a magnetic primer called  Magprime for this part.  It had fewer, but better reviews.  There were no stores in my area that sold it, so I had to purchase it online.  Really lame since the shipping cost about as much as the paint.  You can, however, try another product by Rust-Oleum. It got mixed reviews, but they have recently come out with a new formula that is supposed to be stronger.  Check your local hardware store if you want to go that route, that way you don’t have to pay shipping.  Just make sure the can says it’s their new, stronger formula.  You can also buy it on Amazon and get free shipping if you have Amazon Prime (I have a free trial so I can get some amazing diaper deals, but this isn’t the blog for that).

Step 5:  Pull the tape off – This was my FAVORITE part!  The Frog Tape site says to use a blade to do this, but I did not find it necessary.  The lines were so straight!

Step 6: Separate the dotted line – I painted a 1 inch square with the magnetic paint every 3 inches along the middle white line.  I used a 1 inch, flat head brush that I had from an art class that I took a while back.  It’s not perfect, but you can’t tell unless you look very closely.
Step 7: Make your magnetic cars – You should be able to pick up these wooden vehicles at your local craft store for less than a dollar a piece.
If you do not buy anything else online, you will at least want to buy these Rare Earth Disc Magnets. They are so crazy strong!  I couldn’t even get them apart when I first opened the package.  Be very sure NOT to let your kids play with the magnets.  If swallowed, there could be some serious consequences.  I have taken some extra precautions on the assembly of the cars to try and keep my kids from having access to the magnets, but you still need to use your best judgement on how much supervision your children need with them.  My baby girl is still under age 3, so I am sure to supervise her when she plays with the cars.
Use your hot glue gun to glue two magnets to the back of each vehicle.  Cut a scrap of fabric, turn under the edges so they don’t fray, and hot glue it over the magnets.  That way, if the magnets fall off for some reason, they will be inside this pocket of fabric.

Cut 2 pieces of felt to cover the spots where the magnets will be touching the wall.  Use the hot glue gun to glue these on as well.  This protects the pocket of fabric and the wall when your kids “drive” the cars along the road.  If you want to be extra crafty, you could sew the magnets in between the felt and the fabric.  That way there would be less chance of your kids getting hold of them too.

The result is not pretty, but no one is going to see the back anyway right?

So that’s it!  Evan loves his new room and even drives his toy cars along the road on his walls.  I think this would be a cute thing to do even if I didn’t use the magnetic paint!

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20 Responses to Evan’s Room Makeover Tutorial

  1. This is sooooo amazing. My boys would flip over a magnet road in their room. Whaaaa, I wish I could paint things how I wanted. I hate being a renter. I’m a new follower. Too much fun!

  2. Oh, I want to do this! I’m just trying to figure out which wall I’ll use. (Not MY baby’s room! She’s seventeen — years, not months!) This is for the daycare I run out of my home. I’m sure my family would LOVE this in our dining room! (Right? Right??)

  3. Hi! I saw this post on Pinterest. 🙂 I love Evan’s room. The signs and the door knobs are adorable. Funny enough, I did almost this exact thing four years ago…magnetic road, the colors, everything. Crazy. You can see it here:

    http://mandypelton.blogspot.com/2008/08/calebs-room.html

    Mine, however, is too high for my son to play on. So, that’s a bummer. It’s more just decorative. I had dreams of extending it down but got lazy. And my magnetic paint doesn’t hold the cars up too well. Do you have any problems with that?

    Thanks for sharing your tutorial. I really like your blog.

  4. How funny! Yours looks really cute! I bought some REALLY strong magnets on Amazon. There is a link to them on my blog. They even hold onto the wall after putting fabric and felt over them. Thanks for the comment!

  5. I love the style of cars. Where did you get them? I’m doing a road in my soon to be nursery. Even though my son won’t be able to play with it for a few yes. I still love the idea!

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