I found a gorgeous laminated fabric that coordinated well with the rest of our home and stretched it over DIY canvas stretchers. The stretchers were just a few dollars each at the art supply store, and I ordered the fabric here.
Assemble the stretcher bars - I asked the gal at the art supply for a demo, and she was kind enough to oblige. They just interlock at the corners, and she suggested I seal them with a bit of wood glue before pushing them together. You can let it dry overnight, but it should be good to go after an hour or two - the glue dried quickly.
(I also failed to get pics of this part of the process...oops!)
Iron your fabric - on the WRONG side of the fabric, with a dry iron, on low heat. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!!!! You will melt the plastic if the heat touches it directly. I found that the wrinkles were nearly impossible to eliminate completely, but this did help. Ask if they can roll the fabric instead of folding it; since I ordered mine online, I didn't think to specify this.
Lay your fabric face down on the floor (don't mind my ugly rental carpet).
I even got out the straight pins and marked 3".
I borrowed from these two tutorials for the rest, found here and here. The first tutorial is excellent for how to finish the corners.
Stretching the fabric, getting ready to staple it in the center of one side of the frame.
A finished corner
I had some extra fabric overhang, so I trimmed it flush with the frame, just to make it feel more finished even though no one will see the backside.
And voila! I now have a surface that is easy to wipe clean, and it adds some visual interest in our all brown and beige kitchen area. Now that it's done, I should have bought the fabric with the pink flowers, to tie in with her chairs. But, she won't throw food forever (I hope!), so I'll reuse this in another room where it looks nice with our other home decor. I think it'd make a lovely headboard one day.
Now we just give this a quick wipe after meals if she was particularly messy, and our wall is saved (as is our deposit).