DIY barn board growth chart

I love the idea of keeping track of a child's growth with a growth chart. I really seeing a door frame with a bunch of lines and names and ages scribbled all over them, but unless you're living in your forever house when your kids are young, it's something that often gets left behind. Store bought growth charts are an alternative, but so many of them are covered in kids characters and images, and I sort of think that a growth chart is more for the parents than the kids and will likely stay with the parents after the kids leave, so shouldn't they be designed to suit adults too?

My dad has a farm property with an old barn on it so when we were there a while ago I searched for the perfect piece of barn board to make a growth chart for our house. I'm quite pleased with how it turned out. 
This is fairly straightforward to make, and certainly a good DIY for a few evenings or a summer afternoon in the backyard.

I wanted to keep the look of the wood pretty rustic, so I didn't do anything to prep it other than wipe off the grime with a slightly damp cloth.

Using a ruler I marked off where I wanted the lines to go (every inch). I decided I wanted short lines every inch, but medium lines every 3" and the longest lines every 12" to make each foot. This way it looks like an old metre stick.
I didn't have a stencil for the numbers, so I just typed out the numbers 1-6 and then played around with fonts and sizes on my computer until I found what I liked. I can't remember what I used in this case but it was one of the standard Word fonts, likely in the 30+ size range.

Once I had the numbers the way I wanted them, I simply laid them on the barn board in the correct spot (at every 12" line) and with a really sharp pencil, I traced over the numbers on the paper.  This left enough of an indent in the wood underneath that I was able to fill it in with black paint.

I then traced over the lines marking the inches with the same black paint.

You could shellac the whole thing once the lines are painted, but as I said, I really wanted to keep this rustic looking. Plus, I wanted to be able to write with a pen, pencil or marker the names and dates that my kids were measured. After all, this is supposed to be functional.
To hang it, I attached two eye hooks on the back and a piece of wire between them and hung it just like any other picture.  Just remember to measure where you hang it so that the 1' mark is actually one foot off the ground!.


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