The IKEA Hack That Will Help Keep The Whole Household On Schedule

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A busy household, while fun (and chaotic at times), can also get confusing if you don't have a good time-keeping plan in place. Knowing where everyone has to be each day is a lot of information to memorize, and while technology provides apps to track every sports match, meeting, and event you can think of, there is something to be said for a hard copy calendar that everyone can access in the house. If you've been looking for a way to display your activities, but haven't found a calendar that fits your design aesthetic, why not create your own wall-mounted easel that can serve as a tracker with a variety of IKEA supplies that looks good in any room?

This DIY calendar is easy to build and makes it simple to draw out your own monthly (or even weekly) calendars that people can fill in as commitments or events come up. For less than $20, you'll have a planner that is big enough for everyone to see (so no more excuses about forgetting a task) and once the week or month is over, you simply tear away the marked-up paper to reveal a fresh sheet.

Create your own calendar with a few simple items

To create this clever calendar, you will want to head to IKEA and grab a curtain rod, like the RÄCKA in black ($8.99), and a pair of finials like the RAFFIG set for $2.00. These will serve as your rolling rack for the kraft paper where you'll draw out your calendar. To secure the curtain rod, all you need is a wall bracket: try the IKEA BETYDLIG, which only costs $1 per bracket and holds up your easel in a clean, discreet finish thanks to the no-fuss design. The distance between brackets will depend on the size of the paper roll you purchase. You can find these at local craft stores, or look for Brown Craft Paper Rolls on Amazon, which cost $29.99 for 36 inches across. As long as your curtain rod is 40 inches or longer, this is a great size and allows for a sizable calendar to be drawn.

Place the paper roll onto the curtain rod, then drill the brackets into a blank wall in your home. Make sure the height of the brackets allows for the paper to be pulled down low enough for everyone in the family to access it. Then use markers to draw up a weekly or monthly calendar with enough space in each box to fill out activities. 

Add accessories to keep the fun in functional

You can also drill a painted yardstick into the wall near the floor to thread the paper through and keep it in place. You only need to add one screw or nail per end so there is space in the middle to feed the paper through. By painting it the same color as the brackets and curtain rod, you can create uniformity so it looks like a set. Lastly, to make markers and pens accessible, you could purchase the IKEA ORDNING Utensil Holder for $3.99 and drill it in place. Paint it to match your easel fixtures for an aesthetically pleasing setup. If you don't want to drill the marker holder into the wall, you can always set up a small table or stool next to the calendar to hold writing devices.

Because the easel sits up against your wall, avoid color transfer and bleeding by sticking with thicker craft paper, and always do a spot test with your markers to ensure they don't leave any residue on the wall behind your calendar (and keep acetone nearby to combat permanent marker stains). Metallic Sharpies work well with brown craft paper, which is also a good color for various interior aesthetics and is easier to see if your walls are white. Once your tracker is set up, let each family member choose a color and encourage them to note all their events and activities so there's a method to the mayhem.