1 very sharp and sturdy X–Acto knife

1 pair of scissors

1 straight edge

1 high contrast image


Contact paper in any color or texture


1. Choose a large, high contrast image, either of your own design or from a web source. Sharper, two–tone images are preferable, for they provide a workable cutting path in later steps. If you need some help choosing a suitable image the folks at the Vitale Digital Media Lab, located in Van Pelt, can help to create a graphic using Photoshop. We sketched a Mexican wrestling mask — Nacho Libre would be jealous.

2. Tape your image to the back (sticky side) of a piece of contact paper. Contact paper is sold in a variety of colors and textures at art supply and home decorating stores. Here, we decided to revamp the typical bulletin board by using corkboard contact paper.

3. With your X–Acto knife, begin to outline the image starting with the finest details at the interior, and continue by working your way outward. Once the details are carved, do NOT remove the paper backing.

4. Using a scissor, cut around the outer border of the design. Discard the excess contact paper.

5. Remove the contact paper backing ONLY on those parts of the decal that you wish to adhere to the walls. Carefully stick the contact paper on a wall of your choosing, using your straight edge to squeeze out any air bubbles or ridges. Remove the unwanted contact paper to show the details and contrasts in your graphic.

6. Presto! X–Acto! You now have a one of a kind bulletin board, unavailable for purchase at Urban Outfitters. Invite your friends over to your room to brag.