This post from Aly Dosdall is perfectly timed for the start of a new school year as the plethora of paperwork is coming home.

“With my oldest 4 kids back in school now we are starting to build up quite the pile of teacher notes and papers. Things get a little disorganized and out of hand without some kind of system to keep track of them. This month I thought I’d share with you a back-to-school organization project. My girls and I made these message boards to hang in their rooms where they can put important papers, notes, invitations, etc so they don’t all end up in a pile on the kitchen counter.


These are easy and fun to put together and can work for boys or girls depending on the papers and embellishments you choose.

Here’s what you need:


1. 1-12×12 inch corkboard
1-12×12 inch sheet chipboard or cardboard (I used the chipboard packaging from a paper pack I recently purchased)
2. 2-1×12 inch strips of patterned paper
3. 5-2 ¼ x7 inch strips of coordinating patterned papers for a 5 letter name (or 6-2 inch strips for a 6 letter name) **Note: for a shorter name increase the width of the strips, for a longer name decrease the width.
4. 2 lengths of ribbon, ric rac, or trim (2 feet long each)
5. coordinating alpha stickers
6. journaling spots or tags
7. your favourite embellishments


Here’s what you do:

To create the pleated paper border across the bottom of the message board glue the two 1×12 inch strips of paper together, and then pleat until they are about 12 inches in length. Sew down the middle of the pleated strip with a straight stitch. (If you don’t have a sewing machine, you can hand sew or just adhere the pleats so they are secure).


To create the pennants for your banner fold the 2 ¼ x 7 inch strips in half. Form triangles by cutting from the center of the open ends to the corners of the folded end as seen in the photo below.

Using craft glue, adhere the pleated border to the bottom of the corkboard, and the back of the pennants to the top of the message board as shown below. Squeeze a thin ribbon of craft glue along the inside of the pennant creases where the trim will be placed.

Place one length of the trim over the craft glue in the pennant creases (making sure it is centered) and press down to secure, leaving 3-4 inches hanging over the edges of the corkboard. Adhere the top flaps of the pennants down as seen below. Adhere letters to the journaling spots or tags, then adhere the journaling spot or tags to the pennants and embellish as desired.

To attach the trim for hanging, turn over the cork board and apply a dime-sized amount of craft glue in the top corners. Press the ends of the trim into the glue leaving 3-4 inches hanging over the edge of the corkboard as shown below. (The 3-4 inches of extra will be tied with the extra from the banner trim later.) Glue the 12 x 12 chipboard (or cardboard) sheet to the back covering the edges of the trim. Pay special attention to gluing the edges of the chipboard. This will help support the message board. When the glue is dry, tie the extra ends from the hanging trim and the banner trim in bows or knots to embellish.


Hang in your kitchen, family room, or your child’s bedroom and fill with important notes and reminders, or your favorite photos. Here’s to an organized and stress-free school year!