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$5 + 30 Minute Wooden Growth Chart

******* BREAKING NEWS: I have been so overwhelmed at the response to this post and all the people who have told me that they LOVE this project that I decided to start an Instagram account (like today) dedicated to bringing you craft and DIY project inspiration right in your Instagram fedd!  Find me on IG as @CraftInspired *******


Do you ever have those DIY projects that seem to never make it off the to do list? For years I have wanted to make a wooden growth chart but it is just one of those projects that never made it to the top of my list. I figured now that my youngest is 3.5 (today!) I better get on it before I miss all those marks of him shooting up at every growth spurt.

How to Make a Wooden Growth Chart for under $5!

Well, I can report back now that this growth chart is checked off the list and the best part is it cost me under $5 and about 30 minutes to complete! Now that’s a project! (time calculated excludes drying time)

I decided to use a fence post I bought at Lowe’s Home Improvement for right round $2 The fence posts are the perfect size for the growth chart and are super affordable so it seemed like the perfect option!

I also picked up a quart of gray paint in the mis-tint section for only $0.50! Great find! It seems that they always have a selection of neutrals on clearance for mis-tint. I always like to check it out when I am browsing through and pick up any extra good deals.

The last things I needed was two small bottles of acrylic paint that I got at the craft store for $0.59 each. I chose dark brown for distressing and a Tiffany blue for the numbers.

That means my total with tax was just under $5!

To make the growth chart I took my fence post outside and painted on a nice thick coat of the gray paint (5 min) and let it dry.

After it was dry, I brought it in and used the dry brushing technique you can see here to distress it with the dark brown acrylic paint (about 3 minutes).

How to Make a Wooden Growth Chart for under $5!

Next I pulled out the tape measure to 6 feet, which is the height I wanted my finished chart to go to. I lined up the bottom of the board with the 6 inch mark because I knew I would want to leave some room to hang the board above the base boards and such. If you have larger base boards you might want to leave 8 inches. Since my baseboards are only 2 inches, I had plenty of room!

I used a black sharpie to mark the foot and inch markers down the side with a ruler to keep the likes straight and even. You could also use your brown paint for this if you prefer. (10 min)

After the markers are drawn in, I used a stencil to add the numbers 1-6 at the foot markers.(5 min) If you don’t have a stencil, you could use the carbon transfer technique shown here to easily add numbers to your chart.

To finish, I dry brushed over the numbers to help them blend in to the distressed look (2 min.)

How to Make a Wooden Growth Chart for under $5!

See how easy that was? No more excuses to put off this project!

And now a confession… I was so in love with this, I had to give it to my dear friend for her baby shower!  It makes a perfect personalized gift.  I really appreciate getting handmade items, so I also like to give them when I can.  And with the inscription on the back, I think it was a perfect gift for the new little man!

What do you think, would you keep it or give it away as a gift?

How to Make a Wooden Growth Chart for under $5!


Have you followed The Pinning Mama on Pinterest? See all of the fun projects we pin from around the web!  Also, Make sure and check out some of our other fun crafts like this Modge Podge Baby Stats Board or you can see all of our crafts here.

stats board, gift ideas, baby shower gift, baptism gift, christening gift, blessing gift, present for baptism, baby present, wooden board, DIY print on wood, mod podge crafts, wooden memory board

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    • says

      Hi Jenn! Thanks for your comment! I used a dry brush technique… There should be a link in the post to the distressing. We would love for you to post a pic of your finished product on our FB page!

  1. emily says

    Looks fantastic! Don’t forget to leave room above the 6′ line. Some families have tall members. We measure our kids and are now marking 6’3″! I would hate to have such a precious memento that we “grew” out of.

  2. emily says

    Also, I love the fence post. However, if a smoother board was used, you can easily get more information written down without contending with the bumps. We use one board for three kids. One kid per side and one in the middle. I use fine point sharpies. When we make a height check, we record the date, any extra info like first day of school, and also weight. They enjoy comparing how tall they are next to a sibling from another year.

    • says

      Thanks Kelly- It really is! We have had several people post theirs on our FB page so definitely doable! The paint is Apple Barrel Brand and the color is Key West. I bought it at Walmart for a whopping 59 cents!

    • says

      Hi Cynthia! I am glad you love the project as much as us! There are quite a few options for hanging. You could attach a picture hanger to the back, or carve a few notches in the back and hang with nails. Or you could use a few command strips to hold it up as well. Fence posts are pretty light so I am sure that would work!

  3. Ashley says

    Thanks for the tutorial! I’ve been wanting one of these but they are so expensive to buy! I’m in the process of making mine now!

    • says

      I didn’t. It makes stenciling a bit more challenging, but with the size of the numbers it isn’t too bad. If you want it to be smooth, I would just invest in a higher quality board rather than spend the time and effort sanding.

  4. Bettina says

    I love this project and have made 2 growth charts, one four our family and one as a gift. My only problem was that the paint would bleed when using the number stencils. Any tips on how to avoid ?

  5. Leana Ott says

    I found this post this morning and it beautiful. I am getting ready to make one too, so thank you for the inspiration. I noticed you used a fence post and wondered if it’s treated lumber? Please
    understand I’m posting only because you likely know but treated lumber can be dangerous indoors because of the chemicals it releases. I just wanted warn your readers before they make one to make sure they used untreated lumber, especially in a nursery.

  6. Christina says

    I love this post! This will be the perfect gift for my best friends baby shower! Can you please share a list of the paints you used? They will tie in perfectly with the nautical nursery she is in the process of creating…

  7. Amy says

    I went and bought the fence post today and am so excited to start this project! The wood is rough and coarse to touch:( Any advice on how to make it smooth?

    • says

      You can try to sand it a bit. Fence posts are cheap but the trade off is definitely the finish. You can get much smoother wood for a few dollars more to save you time.

  8. Marisa says

    I wish that,I had done this from when the kids were younger. Part of my hesitancy was that I would aIways see them done on people’s door posts and you can’t take it with you if you leave. Who wants to leave such a sentimental item behind? ?? But this is portable! I think I’m going to make them for baby shower gifts for other young moms.

  9. Lisa says

    My nine year old daughter and I jumped on this project! We were looking to do this project in a lighter, girlier version. Off we went to Home Depot. There the wood is called “a single piece of trellis”. We bought one piece, an 8oz. sample of “Oops paint”, a foam brush and one stencil paint. Total cost at Home Depot was $3.52.

    We still needed stencils so we went to Michael’s. We used a 50% off coupon to pay for them and bought one more stencil paint and a wooden butterfly to glue at the top. Total cost for project was $7.74.
    We used the base color of “peachy off-white”, distressed it with Crimson stencil paint (which we used for the body of the butterfly too) and then painted the numbers and the wings of the butterfly in a turquoise stencil paint. It looks amazing!!! My daughter was wishing she had one!

    Thanks for the great idea! Loved this project!

    Suggestions I would add: use a piece of duct tape to hold the wood piece and the measuring tape steady. I just used it on the back of both and if I accidentally moved it there was no tragedy because both pieces moved together.

  10. Brooke says

    I absolutely love this project!! I’m not the best bargain shopper, so it cost me a little more, just because of the paint, but it turned out so cute! As for the comments of cautionary towards fence posts: I 100% agree. For future reference, if you go to home depot, look for their incense cedar fence picket, 5/8in × 5.5in × 72in, it is untreated, highly durable, smells amazing, and only $2.35. The edges are a little rough, but I took some 60 grit sandpaper and EVER SO GENTLY went over the rough corners. I didn’t bother doing the front where the paint would be, because I feel it wouldn’t make for such nice dry brushing due to lack of texture. Thank you do much

    • says

      That is a great tip on the cedar fence post! I have used cedar as well and you are so right… it smells AMAZING!! Glad you loved the project!

    • says

      Hi Shannon- It has been awhile since I have made one of these and so I am going to have to guess, but I would think about 4″ tall. I got the stencil at Hobby Lobby back then, but since have just created my own with my Silhouette CAMEO. Hope that helps!

  11. GS says

    Just so you know, pressure treated wood has a lot of chemicals that’s not really safe to be around all the time, especially not for kids. As a wood fence piece, this must be pressure treated. I know the size in convenient because it’s pre-cut but it’s not recommended to be used inside the house.

  12. Dominique Restucci says

    I just bought the wood for this, can’t wait to get to it! Quick question: When you mark the inches, do you only mark every 1/4th inch or the in betweens as well?

    • Dominique Restucci says

      Disregard question! I’m not sure why I thought this was only one feet growth chart when writing my comment haha!

  13. Nichole says

    Love this project! I have had this post pinned for a VERY long time and am finally ready to tackle it. This might be a silly question, but I didn’t see in the post or comments how you hung it on the wall. Can you share?


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