DIY: Recycled Cabinet Door Turned Memo Board

By Kate Riley June 28, 2009

I have a dozen cabinet doors leftover from the old kitchen before our remodel, and I couldn’t bring myself to take them to the salvage yard just yet.  I’m glad I waited, because after I gave it some thought, I came up with a few ideas for repurposing them.  The first idea was to transform two of them into memo boards for my office.

Here’s the Before and After:

before and after

I think great fabric makes stylish wall art.  These two memo boards also add practicality, and a place for displaying inspirational images or mementos.  Here they are (unadorned) on my office wall. 

on wall in office

How to Make a Memo Board from a Recycled Cabinet Door:


      1. Cabinet door
      2. Fabric of choice
      3. Quilter’s batting
      4. Ribbon of choice
      5. Staple gun
      6. Nail head upholsterer tacks
      7. Rubber head mallet
      8. Pliers
      9. Picture hanging hardware

Step One:  Remove any hinges or remaining knobs.

remove hinges

Step Two:  Press your fabric to remove any creases.

press fabric

Step Three:  Align your cabinet door on top of your quilter’s batting and fabric.  I used two layers of batting to give it a hint more tufting. 

layer fabric and batting

Step Four:  Attach your fabric to your cabinet door with a staple gun.  Secure corners last. 

   staple fabric   corners  

Step Five:  Lay out your ribbon on the top of your fabric covered door in a grid pattern.  Allow extra ribbon to overlap over the sides so you can later secure it to the back. 

lay out ribbon

Step Six:  Use pliers to stabilize your nail head, then pound into wood with a rubber head mallet. 

pliers and nailheads 

Step Seven:  Secure ribbon to back of board with a staple gun.

staple ribbon to back

Step Eight:  After securing all of the nail heads, lay your memo board face down on your work surface.  It’s best to use a towel or cloth between the nail heads and your table to avoid scratching the delicate nail head.   Secure picture hangers to memo board. 

attach hangers

And that’s how these:

pair of cabinet doors

Get turned into these:

on wall

Here’s a look at the tufting up close.

bit of tufting

I’ve just started adding some momentos: 


Oh, and ahem, yes, in the bottom left, that is the dream crooner himself Michael Bublé with yours truly.  It’s a long, funny, serendipitous story about how I ended up meeting Mr. Bublé.  Let’s just say it was one of my favorite life moments EVER !  I think I’m his biggest fan.  Like, bordering on obsession.  Love him.  LOVE.

Stay tuned for more projects recycling my old cabinet doors…


  1. These are beautiful! I wish I hadn't junked those doors from my previous house now….oh well, stalking your blog as I now am, I'm starting to look at things differently. You should have seen me at this new GW I found. I wanted to cry with happiness at all the stuff I found! Oh, and stopped by HD for spray paint, too! :o) Look what you've done.

  2. ahhhh! I now wish I had some cabinet doors- I was just thinking the other day how I could make my own memo board for my daughters room. grat idea!! cant wait to see what else you thought up. I bed a chalk board is in there somewhere :-)

  3. Another fantastic project! I think I actually might be able to accomplish this one, I'm not so sure about the tufting, but we'll see. :)

  4. LURVE the pic of you and Mr. Bublé!!! What a treat for you! Someday you'll need to share the story…

  5. Stunning!
    You got talent gurl LOL!
    Too bad FOX did not have an award show for creative genius!

  6. Love it! I've loved all your creations so far, and all I can say is that you're a genius!

  7. I love the fabric you chose, Kate! :) I might be able to salvage a cabinet door from the trashy people next door (moved out and left the house in shambles). ;) And Michael Buble? What can I say to that??!

  8. They turned out great! You totally ROCK!!! I'm just a little jealous about Michael Buble….I thought I was his biggest fan but I haven't got to meet him yet. Love that pic!!!

  9. I have some old doors in my garage. Thanks for the idea!

    Happy Summer!

  10. Those turned out just right!! But I am actually in love with your staple gun!!!

    m ^..^

  11. Will you please tell us the story of meeting Michael Buble? Pretty please? I totally *heart* him too.

  12. Beautiful, as always! I have a few old cabinet doors…might have to give it a try. Thanks for the tutorial! :)

  13. Love this idea! I've just recently doscovered your blog, and I'M IN LOVE! Keep the amazing ideas coming.

  14. Oh my gosh! I am squealing and doing a little happy dance right now! I have two square cabinet doors that we had to take off of the cupboard above the fridge when we got a new one. Now, my friend I know what I will do with them. Yay!
    Thanks for the inspiration {as always}

  15. I love this blog~ found you on made by girl:)! would LOVE to link exchange with you! too creative, Ah! Great job!

  16. Oh man, I love him too!! Lucky you. Also thanks for sharing your tutorial on the memory boards. I think I'll have to be on the lookout for an old door.

  17. Can't wait to see what other projects you have up your sleeve for those cabinet doors! Those memo boards are just too perfect!

  18. Love that you recycled the doors, and the memo boards look fab!!

  19. Okay, now I am going to be on the lookout for discarded cabinet doors. The is a great project and your fabric is so purty!

  20. I forgot to add….I am so jealous of your photo with Michael Buble. His voice is so dreamy;)

  21. Oh my – your cabinets turned into memo boards are absolutely fabulous! And thank you so much for the step-by-step tutorial. It looks like something I can follow and try myself! Thank you for sharing with us! You are so very creative. Glad I found you, as I receive such inspiration from the things you make.


  22. I have just discovered your blog, and I LOVE it!! You have such wonderful ideas. I really like how you find inexpensive items & repurpose them, so, so creative. I am so excited to see more!! Have a fantastic week, Nicole

  23. What a great idea, those memo boards turned out fabulously! I love them.

  24. What a perfect project! I can't wait to see what else you do with the other doors….what about a chalkboard for one?

  25. Kate pulls it off again! I wish I had known about this before buying 2 very boring bulletin boards for our home office…

  26. I love love love these! I actually went to Hobby Lobby and got the fabric and some tacks on my lunch hour! I can't wait to get started…will post pics when I am finished! You are so creative! You are also such an inspiration to me!

  27. another unbelievable project! who makes these fabrics? it would work so well for throw pillows too!

  28. Love these and I love that fabric! I have been on the hunt for some old cabinet doors for a project and this is a great idea! Thanks for Sharing!

  29. I understand your fascination with FABRIC and MICHAEL BUBLE’…as I have met him too..hahaha…love the memo boards…TO DEATH !!!

  30. Your picture tutorial is very inspiring! Just love how you used old cabinet doors, and love your choice of fabrics. Thanks for sharing!

  31. LOVE the board and I noticed the tickets and squeeled a little myself—and then I noticed the photo. Michael Buble is not only dreamy to look at but his voice is just like smooth milk chocolate! HAHA

  32. seriously, this is just what i was looking for. I have some canvases (about the size of the cabinet doors) that i wanted to do this with for my office. Now i know to use two layers batting and to attach nail heads on ribbon before securing ribbon to back side. I would have probably stapled ribbon to back first! They look great I can’t wait to make these, Thanks!
    ps i am now a follower

  33. I love Michael Buble and I get to see him this summer, and I am definitely going to make these memo boards. Soon after I finishing painting my dresser.

  34. Love the idea, but I hate to be the bearer of sad news… Michael is my future second husband, and I am his biggest fan. Seen him 3 times in concert, he is so amazing! How in the world did you get a picture with him!!!

  35. I just discovered your website today and love your ideas and work. The Buble love connection just made it better! We sat on the front row for his concert for my 10th wedding anniversary…I have a great hubby! Keep up the great work and inspirational ideas.

  36. I found your website last week and I love it! I took this idea and instead of using a cabinet door, I used a keyboard desk tray from my daughter’s old desk. I came out beautiful, and the only thing I had to buy were the nail tacks. Thanks for the ideas.

  37. I love your website. I think I first saw you on Nate show and decided then that you were a genius! I cannot wait to make this, I have an old entertainment center with cabinets that’s sitting on my patio because I knew it would be of good use later on. Thanks for this!

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