July 01, 2015


DIY: Checkers Travel Game


Prepare for the beach and pack the fun with this painted travel game. The soft game board allows for easy transport and a small footprint in your beach bag. Prepare at least one day ahead of your trip so the board and pieces have plenty of time to dry. Gather the your family and friends for a few rounds as you sit and relax in the shade this 4th of July!



  • - 20x18" fabric
  • - acrylic paint
  • - paint brushes
  • - adhesive back foam
  • - scissors
  • - wood block
  • - sculpey
  • - washi or masking tape
  • - ruler
  • - needle & thread or a sewing machine
  • - cookie cutter
  • - rolling pin


how to make

Step 1. Protect your surface with plastic and lay the fabric flat.


Step 2. Squeeze some paint into a small dish. We wanted a fun 4th of July theme so we mixed up a nice shade of blue but you can make your board any color. Slowly add water to the paint to make a saturated wash.



Step 3. Paint your fabric using broad strokes. For a washy look, concentrate the paint in a centered square and then pull the color out to the edges using a watered down solution. Lay flat to dry on paper towels. 

Step 4. To make your game pieces, roll out a 14" thick pancake of clay. Press a cookie cutter into the clay and gently release the shape from the mold. For checkers each player gets 12 pieces- so 24 total. You can differentiate the players' pieces using two colors of clay, two different cookie cutters, or you can just paint them later. Follow the clay package instructions for baking.  


Step 5. When the fabric is dry, pin a 1/4" hem on all 4 sides. You can sew this by hand, or use a sewing machine. 


Step 6. Plan your board. A checker board is 8 squares by 8 squares, so if each square is about 1.5", the board should be 12"x12". Measure the fabric and center the board 

Step 6. Mask off the playing board using tape. Make small pencil marks every 1.5" on all four sides and use thin tape to mark the gap between checks. 

Step 7. Make a 1.5" square stamp using adhesive foam and a stamping block. 

Step 8. Use a paint brush to apply paint to the stamp. Use the tape as a guide to stamp every other check. Reapply paint between each stamp. 

Step 9. Remove the tape and allow the paint to dry completely. 

Step 10. If you made all 24 pieces the same, divide them up and paint them two colors. Spray paint, acrylic or even nail polish will do the trick.

Grab a For the Makers cloth bag to house your new game and pack it in your next picnic or beach trip!