Painting A Chess Board On The Dining Room Table

Preparing the table to paint the chess board. Jon sanded the table top where I marked the edges of the board.

We sat at the dining room table, the chess game between us.  But instead of the black and white board in front of me,  I kept seeing those square, sturdy cement tables in city parks.  The checkered board etched and dyed in the concrete.

Jon and I just started playing chess again.  We’d played a few years ago, but then got out of the habit and the board and pieces have been tucked in the back of the living room closet.

It was our trip to Vermont, just after Christmas, that got us playing again.  We got to the Inn before our room was ready so we sat in front of the fire in the main sitting room and played a game of chess.

I learned to play when I was a kid, but only played as an adult with Jon.  He knows more about the game, but I’m learning.  And we’re both having a lot of fun playing.

When I suggested we paint a chess board on the dining room table Jon thought it a great idea.  It somehow seemed the most natural thing to do.

I drew the grid with marker then painted every other square with black paint.

When I thought of painting the chess board on the table two things came to me from my childhood which may explain why it seemed so natural.

One was the Potsy (aka hopscotch) board that we had in our backyard growing up.  It was made with triangles etched into the cement and colored red.  My Grandfather and father made it when they built the house.

The other was that my maternal grandparents’s dining room table was a billiards table with a piece of Plywood on top of it.  There was always a table cloth on the table unless the plywood was off and someone was shooting pool.


I don’t like using painters tape, I like my imperfect handmade lines better.  But I thought I’d try it for the edge of the board.  It didn’t work so well. As I have experienced before, the paint found its way under the tape.

I painted the board last weekend but Jon and I haven’t christened it yet.  Somehow we just haven’t found the time to play.

But we’re supposed to get some more snow this weekend so it may be just right for a few games.


The chessboard all done.

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