Ruler Growth Chart Tutorial

Did you see this on my Pinterest DIY board about a month ago? I finally got over to Lowe’s & bought my big piece of wood (to which P said, “hehe, big piece of wood”, I married a 13 year old) & after that the project was easily done in one afternoon…

The wood couldn’t have been easier to get. In fact if you’re intimidated to go to the hardware store (like me) & the thought of going to lumber section no less is enough to make you scratch a project (hand up in air) then this is one you should absolutely make yourself do. I had all sorts of anxiety about getting the right size piece of wood. I don’t know what my problem is, I’ve asked for wood to be cut at Lowe’s before. They don’t make you sacrifice your first born child.

It was completely painless but nonetheless every time I need to go I get all panicked about being a girl in man’s world. Like they’re going to see me with my wedge boots & pretty little purse & point me in the direction of the paint section. “Aw, poor little lamb is lost, paint samples are that way honey…”

But look, all that anticipation for nothing…

I didn’t even have to speak to anyone. Wood already comes precut in 6′ pieces. It even has a nice little sticker on it so I can do self-checkout & not speak to a soul. I was in & out with my big piece of wood in 5 minutes. {insert joke here} {{for a craft blog it surrre is getting dirty around here!}}

Next step I threw a vinyl tablecloth over my dining room table & laid the wood across a couple of cans of spaghetti o’s. Using an old bib I wiped on some ‘golden oak’ Minwax stain to the front & the sides. While the stain dried I used my Silhouette (did I tell you P got me one for Christmas? Susan finally taught me how to use the darn thing over the weekend, more on that to come) to create the number & dash stickers. The wonderful thing about the Silhouette is I can go ahead and space out all of the dash marks 1″ apart that way I can transfer them all onto the ruler in one perfectly spaced ginormous vinyl cutout. If you don’t have a Silhouette than a.) I apologize for rubbing it in your face that it’s so stupidly awesome for this project & b.) have several other perfectly suitable solutions.

I’ve seen lots of people mark 1″ spaces down their piece of wood & then use a stencil to draw on the dashes & numbers like this lovely lady did here. If something even easier sounds good to you then take a look at this, pre-made vinyl growth ruler kits from Etsy. Girly does all the work for you. If you don’t have a cutter & don’t mind paying a few extra bucks that’s probably a nice way to go. Also I used pink vinyl because I didn’t want the stark contrast of the black vinyl against the wood, I think the pink is a little funky & somehow makes having a giant ruler a tad less hokey.

Once all of your stickers are applied, take a deep breath, you’re almost done. And now’s the fun part. You get to whip out your drill. (hehehe, ok, seriously, I have issues)I attached two d-rings. (purchased at target in the picture hanging/hooks/duct tape aisle) Each one is 2″ on either side of the center of the board, about 6 or so inches from the top of the board. Then on the wall I placed two of these mounting screws also bought at Target. They claim to hold 60lbs each & since I was a bit worried about the darn thing falling on my kid’s heads these seemed like a good idea. Just keep in mind when you’re placing your bear claw screws in the wall that they need to be the same distance apart that you placed your d-rings (4″) & also if your ruler is like mine & starts at 6″ then you’re going to need to hang it exactly 6″ off the ground. That’s it my friend. It was easy, right? Righhhttt?? I hope you make one. I’m really loving the way it looks. Now I just need to find a way to get Sam to understand why her height mark isn’t getting higher every time she walks in the room. (“but I ate my broccoli!”)

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  1. Ha ha ha. Funny that you posted this. I have been stalling on doing one for our living room as well and FINALLY got off my butt and got it done. Aren’t they great!!!

  2. Heidi

    I love it! I have been wanting a growth chart for my son for about a year and haven’t liked any of the ones I found in stores. My other problem is that I would like to keep it if we move. So, this would be a great way to do it. Thanks.

  3. Jenny

    I love it in pink!! I’ve been wanting to make it since I first saw it, thanks for giving me the inspiration for actually doing it!

    (also… I totally did the 12 yr old laugh… “hehe, that’s a lot of wood….hehe she said whip it out”)

  4. Jill Deibler

    I totally feel you about the intimidation factor of being a woman in a man’s world. But having to go to a Hardware Store like Lowe’s or Home Depot is such a big part of my job that this is how I’ve come to appreciate it. Apparently guys have a hard time getting the attention of the people who work there when they need assistance finding a product or retrieving an item. This fact was brought to my attention one day by a male co-worker who was astounded how quickly I got in and out of that place and how eager people were to help me. I’m not trying to play all “Damsel in Distress” here, but I’ll take the advantage when I have it.

  5. A friend of mine just made one of these as a christmas gift for another friend. I’m hoping she’ll make me one, too! I love it. Besides looking great, my favorite part about them is that they aren’t permanent and can go wherever you go :)

    • Natasha

      I know, right? Growth charts on the walls are so sweet & nostalgic but nowadays how many people get to stay in the exact same house for good?

  6. Roxy

    This is so cool! If I had kids, I’d totally make this lol. I’ve been trying to get into pinterest, but I’ve been waitlisted sadly :( Though I took a peek and totally understand the addiction.

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