Scrabble: Part 2

Time for Scrabble, Part 2. (In case you missed it, here is Part 1.)

Next up, the board.

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After way too much brainstorming on what would be best as the actual board, I bought a canvas drop cloth. The measurements were pretty tight for 15 rows x 15 columns of my painted tiles, but I just decided to use right up to the end of the canvas for my board. I knew my mom would appreciate it being handmade, which was a great excuse for it being such a tight fit with the tiles! I ironed the creases so that the canvas would lay flat, and I was hoping I would also have a little more room for my tight squeeze.

Another dilemma, should I paint lines for the squares on the board? After consulting my talented artist friend, Kelly, we decided it would be ok to paint the squares only, and not worry with the lines. I used masking tape to run my “lines” so I could paint on top, and pull it up once the paint dried for nice sharp edges for the squares!

I had all the colors ready to use for painting the squares: brown, red, blue, light blue and pink. After figuring out which colors went where, I had the whole thing painted! It was a little time consuming, but by the end I had it all figured out. I did get off on one of my light blue squares, but since I was using acrylic paint, it was easy to cover up.

I added one more personal touch with “Nana’s Scrabble” at the bottom, and cut a little of the extra canvas off the top. Then, I used a permanent maker to write what each colored squared would score, and of course the star on the middle pink square. I added a dry erase board and makers for our score board, and a bag to keep track of all the tiles to pass around during the game.

Voila – a beautiful handmade board and my biggest DIY undertaking to date! Merry Christmas, Mom!

Scrabble: Part 1

What’s your go-to game when you are with your family?

Our favorite family game? Scrabble. And I mean our entire family – young, old, boys and girls. For me, it’s one of my greatest memories with my Mimi. She always beat the dog out of all of us, so when we won in a game against her, it was a real victory! Even though she passed away a few years ago, I still cherish those memories with her, and it’s a legacy that my family continues.

So, I wanted to make my mom a Christmas present she’d never forget! A big Scrabble game – one that you can play outside or inside, with oversized letters. Unfortunately, I could not find anyone that sold one! I researched for what felt like forever… until my little DIY heart decided I’d just make it instead. I took pictures throughout for you to follow along, and I broke down the project into two blog posts.

Part 1:

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The Tiles
The first idea to tackle was the tiles. All 100 of them.  First, I tried Etsy. I thought, surely, out of all those crafters, there will be one that would want to make all of them for me. But the more I searched, my grand idea looked more and more expensive.

Enter Blick Art Supplies – and exit any leftover money in the budget every month! So many great deals, especially if you are buying in bulk. They sell these small “Blick Economy Canvas Panel Classroom Packs” which are made with lightweight 3 oz cotton canvas on a 1/8″ backing. In the description it tells you they are suitable for use with oils, acrylics, tempera, and mixed media. The toothy surface grips paint well with minimal absorption, and the sides are turned under and securely glued. YES!

So, I ordered 6 packages of 24 tiles, all 4in x 4in and 1/8 thick. They were so cute I just knew I could make some other things out of them too! Check them out here.

Painting the Tiles
Thankfully, I ordered tiles that did not absorb too much of the paint. I have several acrylics from left over projects, but I knew I needed a lot of tan brown for this project. I mixed some of my own to extend the life of my tan color. So, with reds, whites, yellows, and oranges, I made it work!

One problem I had was if I wanted them to look handmade or not. I opted for handmade. My mom tends to be very sentimental, and I thought she’d cherish it more if she could tell I made them. And, it was probably cheaper to do this as well! I have pretty legible handwriting, and let’s be honest, it is really hard to mess up bubble letters. Finally, putting those years of painting signs for the football team to good use!

I did try to paint on top of the markers to give the letters a more rustic feel. It looked terrible, so I stuck with painting the tiles, then writing the letters on top with a Sharpie. I had to refer to my Scrabble game for the correct allotment of points for each tile.

This part of the process was pretty time consuming, so I painted all of them and let them dry. While watching one of my favorite TV shows, Revenge, I would tackle groups of letters at a time. I did mess up on a few of them, but the love story of Emily and Daniel just had me distracted.

To Be Continued….next up, the board!