Tuesday, July 10, 2012

DIY: Growth Chart/Oversized Ruler

Update! Since posting this, a wonderful reader mentioned that she is selling vinyl decals for those of you wanting to make this but don't have the supplies. Check out Little Acorns By Ro on Etsy! Right now she's only charging $9.99 for the decal. She makes it easy for you to do this yourself! 

I’m finally participating in Katie and Sherry's Pinterest Challenge!
I jumped on the train. You know, the giant ruler train.  I’ve been seeing them everywhere and pinned the Dear Lillie one a while back. Then my friends started making them (Lynn & Brett and Renee and it made me want one even more and I knew I had to give this project a swift kick in the butt!
ruler copy
PS- If you don’t want to make one yourself, Dear Lillie sells them for $74.95. (It is temporarily sold out though) If you have $75 big ones to shell out for a ruler go for it! I didn’t, so I made my own Smile
Total cost for me was about $10 (D-rings & wood) since I already had everything else.

This was originally created by Pottery Barn (and has since been discontinued) but there have since been many knockoffs. It looks like 517creations may have been the original knocker-offer!
Step 1: Stain your board (I didn’t sand. You may want to because I got a nice splinter in my pinky when I was wiping off the stain!
image image_2
PS- I really need a garage. Like yesterday. Rain and an uncovered back patio are not good conditions for staining furniture outside. Like my No-Moose-Entry-Zone made out of TV trays?
Step 2: While it’s drying create your numbers and tick marks. Most tutorials I found hand drew the lines and cut the numbers by hand or machine. I opted to do both on the machine.
Do you notice my screw up from the shot above? I hadn’t at this point…
Step 3: After the stain is completely dry, apply vinyl. I started 6” up to account that I didn’t want the board to start at the floor.
Can’t WAIT to have a giant craft table so I don’t have to use a shoe box to prop my Cricut on…
Sidenote: I usually use cheap transfer paper for all my vinyl stuff because well, it’s cheap. The first foot and a half or so I used the cheap stuff and you really do get what you pay for…I had a mild panic attack because the vinyl did not want to come off to stick to the board. I finally got it on there with some prodding and peeling but it was super stubborn. For the rest of the board I used some leftover good Cricut brand transfer stuff that worked perfect. Lesson learned!
I put on all my numbers, only to realize my feet were off. Basically I designed it wrong on the cutting program so when I put it on the board, 1.75 feet was where I put the 2. etc…
The board was shaping up to be 8 feet tall (although really only 6 feet) at the rate I was going with the wrong numbers.
Luckily I only had to peel off and re-cut numbers 2-6 and the tick marks could stay.
You can re-use transfer tape by the way. It tends to be good for at least two transfers out of the same piece!
Curiously cute assistant is optional though highly recommended.
Step 4: Screw in the D-Rings
ruler copy
I am thinking of sealing it with poly so the vinyl won’t peel, but I can neither confirm nor deny that I will ever get around to it cause I’m lazy. Plus one day I want to be able to write on it to record my kiddos height!
In the meantime, I’ll just measure my fur babies. So proud and tall! Hah!
Sweet boy is 2 1/2 feet tall.
Moose is about 2 feet and stretching her neck to try and be tall like her brother!
Check out the lovely ladies hosting the Summer Pinterest Challenge!
Young House Love
Bower Power
Centsational Girl
Ten June


  1. I love it!! I made one of these a while back too and I just love how the look hung on the wall.

    I used my little dog to pose next to mine too :)

  2. This turned out great! I'm definitely adding it to my list of future projects for our nursery

  3. Looks great!

    Love the Moose blockage and her and Remi are too cute getting measured. Moose is getting so big!

  4. Hi there! Stumbled across your blog and love it, especially love how your DIY growth chart turned out!
    A few months back I asked my husband to help me make one for our boys and we had fun preparing the board, but got stuck on creating a neat, professional way to put on numbers and tick marks. We tried numerous methods, and weren't happy with any of them, so decided to design a DIY vinyl decal that you can just transfer onto the board and were finally happy with it!
    Since then, knowing how popular this project is, we actually opened a shop on Etsy to sell the decals for other DIY-ers who may not have the supplies to make their own decal! If you'd like to take a look, or recommend the shop in your post as an option to others who might be frustrated by the same step, it's: www.etsy.com/shop/LittleAcornsByRo
    Maybe it will be a help to others out there!
    Thanks and best wishes!

  5. Too cute hon. My girlfriends and I are making this project this weekend.... What cricut cartridge did you use? Do you know what size you used? I wanted to cut them ahead of time so I didn't have to do it Friday night. Thanks.
    P.s. I also have a dog named moose!

  6. @ Brewer, thank you! I didn't use a cartridge, I have a third party software called SCAL that I can design whatever I want on the computer! The numbers are 2.5" high and about 1.75" wide. The short tick marks are 1" and the long ones are 2". I hope that helps! And awe! I love it! What kind of dog is it? Thanks for stopping by!

  7. Moose is a cocker spaniel. I've never heard of SCAL. I have the cricut design work shop that plugs into my computer.
    P.s. this is brewers mom... Brewer is 1, and the giant ruler is for him.

  8. Would you be willing to share the actual SCAL file for this ?

    1. I'd be happy to share it! I'm sorry I forgot to respond to this comment. Well, I'd be happy to share if I saved it...which I'm not 100% sure if I did! What is your email address?

    2. I would LOVE to have the file as well if you are able to send it to me at moodysinmotion@gmail.com.

      Thank you!
      Heather Moody

    3. I would LOVE to have the file as well if you are able to send it to me at moodysinmotion@gmail.com.

      Thank you!
      Heather Moody

    4. I would LOVE to have the file as well if you are able to send it to me at moodysinmotion@gmail.com.

      Thank you!
      Heather Moody

  9. So I am making one of these right now and also chose the dark walnut stain. I did a test strip and thought it looked way too dark. I love the way yours looks though. Do you recall how long you let the stain sit before wiping it off? Thanks!

    1. Hi Kaleena! I think I applied it to the whole piece and then wiped it right off. I didn't let it sit long enough to do much staining. It may depend on the type of wood you're using too which would deepen the stain. I don't know what kind of wood mine was. I'd love to see yours when it's finished!

  10. Hi, I'm about to embark on making one of these myself and if you DO have the scal file saved, I would love a copy as well! Great tutorial!!

  11. Can I still get SCAL for the cricut?

    1. From what I've heard, it is no longer available for the Cricut.

  12. Hi there can I also ask if I may get the file for this project?

  13. can i getthis file lauralyn41@yahoo.com.

  14. can i getthis file lauralyn41@yahoo.com.



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