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Friday, January 6, 2012

{chunky abc blocks}

Happy Day!  It's Friday! Hopefully today not every single DVD and video we own will be emptied from the drawers, and from their cases, and dumped on the floor by two darling boys---like yesterday.  Yes, it's good it's the weekend...

I'm so excited about this project--these chunky abc blocks are so much fun!  My girls are 5 years old, and in the early stages of reading, writing, and spelling.  I really wanted to make them something to help put words together, and highlight uppercase and lowercase letters.  My boys are 2 years old, and with their little hands, these chunky letters are perfect--they can easily grasp them in their hands.  They are heavy duty--and will hold up to a lot of use. Magnet strips can be placed on the back, and since they're flat, they can be played with on the floor, or on a magnet board.  A cookie sheet is a really fun way to use them, and contain them--great for trips in the car.

  • 2x4 piece of wood, split and cut into 88 pieces (see explanation below)
  • spray paint
  • vinyl abc letters--26 uppercase, 52 lowercase, 10 numbers
  • adhesive magnet strips (comes in a roll)

1. I had leftover 2x4's in the workshop, so I decided to use them to make the wood blocks.  Using them will mean you have to split the wood in half both ways--right through the middle in both directions.  You basically make an "x" on the end of a 2x4, and cut. Then you can cut them into the size of pieces you want.  My pieces area little more than 1 inch thick, and not quite 1 1/2 inches square.  I cut 26 for uppercase, 52 lowercase (two of each, to make it easier for spelling words), and 10 for numbers.

If you don't already have a 2x4, and you want to make it easier on yourself, you could just use a 1x4--then you would only be cutting it in half one way.  They won't be quite as thick, but not by much.  

My cute hubby decided to round ALL the edges--I was not patient enough to do it, but I'm sure glad he was.  :)

2.  Once your pieces are cut, spray paint them the color you've chosen.  I wanted the uppercase and lowercase to be different colors, so I used red and black.  (Rustoleum's Colonial Red in satin, and Black in a flat finish) Let dry completely, then sand the edges and tops just a little to distress.  Use a damp rag to wipe off any excess dust and let dry.

3.  Add your vinyl letters!  I used the century gothic font--my absolute favorite plain font.

4.  If desired, add a strip of magnet to the back.

Ta-da!  Darling chunky abc blocks!  My boys love stacking them, and my girls love spelling words--perfect! There are so many games and activities that these blocks can be used for--I love it. These would be really fun in a classroom setting as well...

I have lots of fun Valentine's Day ideas coming up next week...stay tuned!

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Blogger Ginger said...

So cute! :)

January 6, 2012 at 9:50 AM  
Blogger Mantha said...

What a great idea .. love these blocks .. Have a great day :)
Mantha xx

January 6, 2012 at 9:51 AM  
Blogger Natalia said...

Fabulous. Your kids are so blessed to be born into your family!!

January 6, 2012 at 9:55 AM  
Blogger Marie, Chelsea, Buff said...

these are absolutely darling!!!

January 6, 2012 at 10:20 AM  
Blogger Nancy said...

That is a great idea for cut offs in my shop.

January 6, 2012 at 10:24 AM  
Blogger Paisley Cinnamon said...

SO cute. I'm pretty sure I'd have a good time playing with those ;)

January 6, 2012 at 10:42 AM  
Blogger Lookiewhatidid said...

Your AMAZING...I love this...

January 6, 2012 at 10:50 AM  
Blogger Okio B Designs said...

Those are so clever! Love the colors you chose too!


January 6, 2012 at 12:31 PM  
Blogger Yvonne said...

Love it.

Hope you have a great day and a fantastic weekend.

January 6, 2012 at 2:23 PM  
Blogger Dani Peterson and Jeff Bell said...

HOW CUTE!!!! Great inspiration :)

January 6, 2012 at 2:24 PM  
Blogger Susan @ said...

Kierste I love these so much! They would be great for my classroom with magnets on them... I think you should sell them!

January 6, 2012 at 4:14 PM  
Blogger Leia said...

Are these vinyl letters something you made or were they precut? Wondering where to get some. Thanks so much, cute idea.

January 6, 2012 at 9:14 PM  
Blogger Debbie Faber said...

Ok, I feel like a did he round the edges? Thanks

January 6, 2012 at 11:30 PM  
Blogger kierste said...


I cut the vinyl letters on my Silhouette, but you can order them from any vinyl company.


They were rounded with a router--using a 3/16 roundover bit.

January 7, 2012 at 9:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love it!! :) (I nominated you for a Versatile Blogger award. Check out my blog for details).

January 7, 2012 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger Lori Thompson said...

so cute and easy! I love all you ideas! Thanks for taking the time on your blog! WE ALL APPRECIATE IT!!!

January 7, 2012 at 6:02 PM  
Blogger Randi~Dukes and Duchesses said...

Those are just fantastic ... my kiddos would love them. Might have to make some. I feel like I copy A LOT of your ideas. :)

January 9, 2012 at 9:43 PM  
Blogger Kristen Duke Photography said...

Those are so cute and fun!

January 12, 2012 at 12:30 AM  
Blogger Monica said...

Wow! I love these!!! Super cute! Thanks for sharing! :)

January 13, 2012 at 10:33 PM  
Blogger SmallTownLife said...

These are adorable! What a great idea. Definitely going on my list of to-dos.

January 28, 2012 at 12:28 PM  

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