Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pottery Barn Knock off: Ruler Growth Chart

Today I have something completely different from the usual paper crafting or sewing project.  This project is one that has been in the works for a while, since it was out of my comfort zone. Years ago Pottery Barn Kids had a really cool large scale ruler growth chart in their catalog.  I loved it, I really wanted it, but I was unwilling to pay the price for it. (Here is the best picture I could find on the internet of it)
After spending way too much time on Ana White's wonderful website I gained confidence that this would be a starter project for building my own Pottery Barn knock off furniture. Oh and another important note of this project is that I decided I could totally do this project on my own without the help of Mr. Sunny.  It is funny how a discussion with my mother and Mr. Sunny came about this weekend on the very topic of what the translation is when I ask for "help" -- it apparently means I want them to do it for me, this is so not true, I find they tend to take over my projects. 

Since this was a simple weekend project, I notified Mr. Sunny on Friday afternoon via text message while he and I were working our 9-5 gig that I thought it would be a great idea to go out to dinner that night to On the Border, which just happens to be in the parking lot of Lowe's.  After dinner I could pick up a board and stain needed for my starter wood project that I (me not him) would be doing that weekend.  Fine, he goes along with the Friday night dinner plan since there are chips and salsa involved. But he was a bit leery on the Project and it's details which I of course assured him the project would be super easy, with a plan to sand, stain, and paint numbers, done. He, of course, would hang it on the wall once completed by me.

On Saturday I technically began step one of my plan before Mr. Sunny was even up to make pancakes for the boys by trying to locate our sander, which I have never used before. Well I did end up having to get Mr. Sunny up to "help" find it and give me quick instructions on how to use it.  Then I promptly started sanding down my "ruler".  Mr. Sunny did come out to "check on the progress" and did try to take over, but I reminded him this was my project. When I was just about done with the sanding a tragic accident occurred, I broke the sander.  How does one do that you might ask; I have no idea. I was sanding along the edge and all of a sudden the sander made a horrible sound and the sander belt fell off.  I had sheared the screw that held the belt part to the handle part, I of course am paraphrasing what Mr. Sunny thinks I did to the sander. This just became a very expensive DIY project. But just look at how beautifully the corners are worn.

After removing all the dust on the board from the sander it was time to stain the board. Still feeling confident and in control of the project even after the demise of our sander I moved on to step two, Staining. So I put on one coat and rubbed it off with an old t-shirt. Again Mr. Sunny came out to check on my progress and again he tried to take over. I let him do a coat to make him happy. After we, I mean, I achieved the color I wanted I moved the board inside to "cure". Step three; painting number would have to wait till the board was cured. This is where a weekend project becomes a year project. Let's just say I loved the board after staining. I loved the worn edges I sanded and this is where my fear set in, what if I ruin it and the numbers turn out terrible. Well after some time I did mark the lines but was still nervous about the numbers. Mr. Sunny could only wait so long. One Saturday after a year long time of seeing it leaning against the wall he decided to paint the numbers. So I used my silhouette to cut out the numbers as a stencil and he painted them. So finally after a year the ruler is on the wall and the kids have been measured. Here it is hanging on our living room wall in all its glory.
And of course here is a close up of Mr. Sunny's handy work.
I'm sure you have come to the conclusion that this was not the starter furniture building project I once thought it would be since I haven't shared anything I have built.  But I still have hope...but I do first need to replace the broken sander.


  1. Tricia I love it ! I have one made by my daughter , she made them for all of us for Christmas. It w as a great gift . Others asked her to make one and they paid her 50$ I have a dark one , I like the light one as well. Great job!

  2. Oh, I love this! Fabulous job, Tricia!



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