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This is a quick and easy tutorial on how to make a wooden arrow growth chart for your kids to track their height.
Tracking your children's height as they grow is really fun with growth and heigh charts. I really wanted a piece that could be decorative for a room while also be something that would move with us should we move homes. I know my kids are growing up so fast, and I want to make sure I track these milestones and treasure them forever.
Why Have a DIY Durable Growth Chart
I wanted to share with you this DIY distressed, wooden arrow that we created that we absolutely love. My little boy has a woodland, hunter themed bedroom with aged wood and decor.
I really wanted something that would have the rustic vibe while also being an heirloom for tracking his height. These also make amazing gifts for anyone having a baby shower or birthday party. These wooden growth charts are durable and are a great treasure to hand down as a family tradition as well.
This has been up for six years now, and the growth chart has still been an amazing treasure in hour household. Here's a picture with all of the dates and their heights:
About This DIY Wooden Arrow Growth Chart Project
This wooden arrow cost under $20 to make and an afternoon to complete. It matches perfect with our woodland wall art that we made. You'll just need a few saws, wood, and wax stains.
For decorating the wood with the ticks for the milestones, you could use a Cricut machine with the stencil tutorial, or you just use a white paint pen and freehand it like I did in this tutorial.
Designing Your Wooden Growth Chart
Think about the space that the wooden growth chart will be in and determine whether any staining would be needed. Most often, a simple ruler design would be an easy project to complete.
For this project, we decided to create an arrow to customize the wood board to match the theme of the rustic space we were decorating.
Customizing a Wooden Growth Chart
The best thing about a wooden growth chart project is that it can be as simple or as elaborate as you want it to be. Becuse my son already had three rustic images with sharp corners, I wanted his growth chart to be a little different, which is why I went with the arrow design.
In addition, we stained, sanded, and restained the arrow to give it a distressed, weathered paint technique without bleed.
Tips on Tools and Supplies to Make Wooden Arrow Growth Chart
For the saw, we used a miter saw and jig saw. We found that the jig saw was way easier to use to cut out the edges. We also used an orbital sander with 120 grit paper. For a straight edge, we had steel railings that we had on hand that we used as a guide.
For the wood, we used dimensional 3/4 x 10 inch x 8 foot wood. For paint,w e used white interior paint, dark walnut stain, and a clear satin finish wax. For the design of the numbers, you can use a Cricut machine to make it or you can do it the manual way be printing out letters and cutting them out to trace.
How to Write Numbers on Wood Growth Chart
There are two ways you can go about writing the ticks for the wooden growth chart: do it manually or using a Cricut machine. In this post, I'm sharing with you how I did it manually. As you can see in the images below, I used Bodoni font to print out the letters and then manually cut them and outlined them to the wood board.
To distress the numbers, here's what it looked like when it was colored in versus what it was after I sanded it down to get the look:
Best Tips for Making Growth Chart for Kids
While I was finishing this project, here are some of the tips I've gathered for making this project go smoothly.
Positioning. Before you start on the project, determine where the growth chart will be. Knowing where the trim is and where the stud is will be important for the placement of the growth chart.
Pencil the Design Before Cutting. In order to get the best cut, make sure you stencil in what you want the wooden growth chart to look like. I would recommend designing it with an arrow design below because I feel like it was proportionate to the head and end tail of the arrow.
Personalizing the Wooden Growth Chart
You should ideally determine what you want the arrow to look like. Here's what it looked like prior to trimming off the head and tail of the growth chart.
Here's the front and back ends of the arrows close up so you can see our design. Again, we freehanded this with a straightedge.
Front of Wood Arrow Chart
End of Wood Arrow Growth Chart
As you can see, the end of the arrow looks a little wider than the tip of the growth chart.
Distressing and coating. I would recommend painting, distressing, staining, and then adding ticking in that order. After that's done, coat with the wax I recommend in the tutorial card below.
I think this giant aged rustic wooden arrow growth chart is a beautiful addition to his room and hopefully something that can be passed down from one generation to the next!
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you attach the growth ruler to the wall?
Find a stud inside the wall by using a stud finder and marking the stud. Use a level to check to ensure the growht ruler will be vertically straight. Using a hammer or nail gun, ensure that the nails go into the wood and into the stud.
How do you blend securing the nail with the growth ruler?
You can use brad nails using a nail gun to secure the board to the wall because they will look better blended with the wood for the growth chart.
Where's the best place to buy growth charts instead of making them?
Pottery Barn, Etsy, and Amazon are great retailers that are adorable and cute. I would recommend getting durable ones that will allow you to move from place to place should you move.
Summary of Wooden Arrow Growth Chart
This adorable, simple DIY wooden arrow growth chart is great for keeping track of growth milestones and looks great in his room. This is a really fun and easy project to make.
For more inspiration, check out my woodland nursery wall decor with other rustic nursery decor.