DIY Steel Magnetic Board for Kids (Doubles as A Dry Erase Board)

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For Christmas, we bought my toddler Melissa & Doug magnetic boards, and she loved playing with the magnets.

So, I decided I wanted to have a larger magnet board on the wall when we redid our study to include a craft corner for her.

I needed a custom size, and I wanted it to be pretty BIG.

So, I made my own, and it was such an easy project and had great results.

Follow along for my DIY magnetic board tutorial!

make a toddler magnet board

My Daughter’s Craft Corner Featuring the Magnetic Board

finished magnetic board in craft corner

Ta-da, here’s my daughter’s DIY magnetic board along with our early 90’s wood floors we can’t yet afford to part with!

another view of the craft room

And on the other side of the corner, she bow has all her craft supplies stored in bins, drawers, and shelves.

We also put her DIY bedazzled IKEA easel next to the shelf and F box I had made from using an old diaper box and wrapping paper on top to hold even more goodies.

How to Make a Magnetic Board for Kids

diy magnet board and dry erase board

As I mentioned, I decided to make my own DIY magnetic board rather than buy one.

I was able to get a great deal on the supplies, and purchasing a comparable magnetic board would have cost me way more.

Also, this project was incredibly simple to make and required absolutely no tools!

One awesome thing about this kid’s magnetic board is that it will also double as a dry-erase board with the proper supplies. 

All you need is dry-erase markers (kid-friendly ones) and a dry-erase board eraser.

Before letting your kids go crazy with the markers, though, test them on the back of the steel piece to make sure they indeed do erase off your magnetic board.

Toddler Magnetic Board Supplies:

toddler magnetic board supplies

Here’s all you need to assemble your own board:

  • 2′ x 3′ sheet of galvanized steel
  • 2′ x 3′ wooden picture frame

I bought the 2’x3′ sheet of galvanized steel from Lowe’s and had it delivered to my house. (Here’s a similar galvanized steel sheet on Amazon.)

It’s important to buy galvanized steel if you want your board to be magnetic!

I also bought a 2’x3′ picture frame from Michael’s, and it was only $14.99 on one of their good sale days. (They regularly put their picture frames on sale at 70% off, so just keep an eye out.)

Tutorial for the DIY Magnetic Board

remove the back of the magnet board

To make the magnetic board, I first took off the back of the picture frame and removed the plastic front, basically leaving just a wooden frame.

I then discarded the plastic front and put the steel in the back of the frame.

Because you’re putting a 2’x3′ piece of galvanized steel into a 2’x3′ picture frame, there is no cutting required–it should fit perfectly.

Last, I put the back of the picture frame on again to hold the steel in place.  Simple as that!

zoomed in diy magnetic board

Here’s the finished project hanging on the wall!

I put some IKEA SUNNERSTA buckets on the bottom on the SUNNERSTA rail to hold the magnets that my daughter isn’t using at the time. It keeps the space a little more organized, which was my goal!

DIY Magnetic Board Accessories

To populate the board with fun and educational magnets, I first purchased some magnetic letters from Dollar Tree.

These are the alphabet letters you see in the magnet board picture above.

diy magnets i made out of backsplash

Also, a while ago I upcycled some backsplash into fridge magnets, which are perfect for this magnet board too.

I also started printing out my daughter’s favorite characters (Mickey and Minnie, Sesame Street, Scooby-Doo, etc.) on paper and then laminated them using my laminator with laminating sheets.

adhesive magnetic tape

I then cut magnetic tape and put a rectangle on the back of each magnet. Homemade magnets are cheap, easy, and very easily customized!

I’ve also been searching other blogs for good images that I can print out, laminate, and add magnets too.

I’m thinking of something transportation-related, food-related, and Biblical. This is still a work in progress!

Study Remodel to Toddler Craft Corner

Because I’m super proud of my study reorganization to create the craft corner with our kid’s DIY magnetic board, I want to share some pictures before it gets all messed up by my daughter!

kids craft corner

Here are the KALLAX shelves we bought from IKEA all filled with craft goodies!

And beside it a rolling organizer that holds paper and other small items.

organizing craft supplies in kallax

I also added some cute wall decals I found online!  I really like the alphabet letter decals.

fun wall vinyl another view of our craft room

So far, my daughter has LOVED having her magnet board on the wall to play with. She has also loved her craft corner!

Don’t forget to check out how I made this magnet board into a felt board too if you’re interested in that versatility.


  1. I did exactly the same thing a few month back for our fridge magnets. Sourced from Lowe’s and Michaels as well!!! LoL!
    But I used ikea spontan for kids play area. Because I got 4 pieces for $5 and perfect size for our narrow wall. Will pick up buckets and rail on our next trip to Ikea.

    1. Awesome idea as well! Thanks for letting me know about the spontan!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Cute idea!! Where did you get the white buckets under the magnet board?

    1. Thanks! The white buckets and rail are from IKEA. Just search for Sunnersta, and you should find them!

  3. Hello!

    For the galvanized steel, what gauge did you use? There are different gauges.


    1. Hi! I honestly don’t remember what gauge it was. It shouldn’t matter too much, though. As long as it is galvanized, it should be work and be magnetic. Just make sure the thickness isn’t too much that the steel won’t fit in the frame. The frame should support even thin sheets of steel, though.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Great idea! How does it double as a dry erase board without white board paint?

    1. We actually just use dry erase markers on the magnetic galvanized steel, and they erase right off after we’re done drawing! So while it’s not a white traditional dry-erase board, it still functions like one.

  5. How did you attach the frame to the wall so it won’t fall off when they use it.

    1. The picture frame had a couple of metal holders on the back that it hung from. My husband put bolts and screws in the wall to hang the holders on. It was nice and stable after he was done with it!

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