Truth time: I'm pretty damn ready for the chalkboard trend to be over. I will gladly grant you the fact that chalkboards are stylish, and have an old-fashioned beauty to them, and some of the designs artists create are breathtaking. But LORDY ME, I cannot stand the feel of chalk on chalkboard. I don't know why we even needed to come up with the phrase "nails on chalkboard," because isn't chalk bad enough?! You can never get that dry, scratchy feeling to go away, and the dust gets everywhere. Messy, messy. Definitely not a practical every day solution to me. You know what IS? Dry erase. I LOVE me a dry erase board. They erase so crisply and cleanly, write so smoothly, and there's no dust to be found. Beauteous. The problem, however, is that most dry erase boards are seriously butt-ugly. Plasticky and cheap-looking, even the pricy ones, and if you buy a cheap one they tend to stain after a couple erases. The solution? The thrift store! My favorite solution to so many problems! Step One: Buy a framed picture from the thrift store. It'll need to have a glass pane, not plastic.
Shocking that someone before me hadn't picked up this water-damaged little gem...
Step Two: Destroy! Tear out the back of the frame and remove the current photo/drawing. If you can find a fancy schmancy one with a removable and replaceable back, good on you. This one was so thoroughly sealed that I'm still a bit surprised there weren't incriminating documents hidden within.
Step Three: Almost die of tetanus poisoning. Avoid this step, if possible.
Step Four: Create! Make a pretty menu (or just pretty paper/whathaveyou, if you're making a regular dry erase board) and paint/finish the frame, if necessary. I spray painted mine white.
Step Five: Reassemble! Put everything back together, and voila! A pretty, personalized dry erase board, and the glass will be higher quality than any of the cheapo boards you can get at most stores, and erase more nicely.