DIY Wooden Ruler Growth Chart

I had a hard time finding a nice growth chart that I’d be willing to display in a public area of my home. I wanted something that isn’t permanently adhered to the wall in case we move at some point in the future, and something that would go with the rest of our home’s decor.

I came across a nice wooden ruler-style growth chart online, but I didn’t want to spend what they were asking for it. It wasn’t a terribly ridiculous amount, but if it’s something I could make myself for less, I definitely try to do that first!

I first went out to a local home improvement store and picked up a 72-inch board.

When I got it home, I sanded it down to smooth it out a bit and to also to get rid of the markings on it.

Then I measured out and drew a line for each inch, marking it lightly using a pen at the edge of the board (I would have used a pencil, but they are scarce in my house so a pen was my only option).

Once I had the inches marked out, I went up six inches from the bottom of the board and marked my first foot by making the line double the length of the one-inch marks. I started at six inches because I plan on hanging the growth chart six inches from the floor.

I then repeated the step, but this time I went up 12 inches and marked my next foot, and so on until there were six feet marked.

As for the numbers, I printed them off my computer. I used a traditional-looking font (Century), since I wanted an antique look and I used a large size (and for those trying this at home, it really depends on how big you want your numbers to be to determine the font size).

I printed them out on card stock, so they’d be sturdy to trace. I then cut them out and used them as stencils, tracing around them at each foot of the ruler.

Once I was done with that, I was able to stain the board. I used a walnut-colored stain that I already had. It was a one-step deal so that I would be able to get things done quicker. I applied it with a sponge brush, but later found out that I really should have used a rag. There were streaks, but I’m not completely worried about that. Hey, I’m not a very “handy” person when it comes to projects like this — I usually try to avoid paint, wood and hammers in general, so I’m glad this came out as well as it did!

After the stain dried, I took some black paint markers that I found in the craft section at Walmart (I bought one fine-tip and one medium-tip marker) and went back over my pen markings to make them bolder.

I also re-outlined the numbers and proceeded to fill them in. I allowed that to dry completely before moving on — I didn’t want to smudge it!

I got a large sawtooth picture hanging hook from the hardware department at Walmart. I applied it to the back, about an inch from the top of the board.

The hardest part about this project was hanging it —if it’s off, it could affect your measurements (and if you’re a perfectionist like I can be, it could drive you crazy!).

I found the best method was to measure from the hanging hook to the bottom of the board and add six inches to that number. Then measure that length on your wall from the floor and mark where it ends up. I used blue painters tape to mark my 77 inches from the floor (remember, I used a 72-inch board, my hook was one inch from the top, and I added six inches since my board is to be six inches from the floor).

I recommend using a heavy duty nail or screw (and possibly an anchor if you have one) to hang your growth chart.

Now you can measure your child!

Use a permanent marker or even a paint marker to keep track of those measurements. It’ll be fun to see how much your child grows over time. And you’ll love having this piece to show off in your home!

9 Responses to DIY Wooden Ruler Growth Chart

  1. Looks great! And what a good helper you had :)

  2. This is fantastic, I think I need to hit up my hardware store!

  3. Seriously this is co cool! It looks awesome. And the photos of your little handywoman are great. :)

  4. Sweet! I was on the look out for something like that. We used to just mark a wall at my grandma’s house. This will be cuter. Thanks!!!!

  5. Love this! It’s on my to do list!!

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