Finishing this DIY has been long overdue. We actually started making it as special birthday gift for my sister, who loves board games. But, never got around to completing it. So, a few weeks ago, we took out a complete weekend for it and I, am thrilled with the results. It’s a completely personalized Monopoly Set – from the locations, to the houses, to the colors – everything has been customized to my sister’s likes. See the details of what we made below.
Side note: Not going to lie, this project is complicated. So, if you need clarifications on any points or I’ve missed something, please feel free to message me and let me know!
Time taken: 3-4 days
- Cardboard sheet
- Old Monopoly Set (Optional)
- Paints (have atleast 10 different colors)
- Crafts Knife / Cutter
- Pencil & Black Marker
- 5 Thick sheets of paper
- Sticker Printer Paper
- Templates for the Deeds, Cards and Stickers
In case you don’t have an old monopoly set, you will need small items to use as houses and counters to play with.You can use small boxes, buttons, toys etc.
Needless to say, this DIY had a LOT of components. So, lets take them on, one at a time. Here’s a main list,
- Place Deeds
- Train Station Deeds
- Utility Deeds
- Community Chest Cards
- Chance Cards
- Houses and hotels
Place Deeds (22 cards): With Monopoly, the first thing you need to work out is the theme for the board and the places you would like to include on the board. We chose Retail Therapy (aka My sister may be a shopaholic) and swapped the places on the board for shops she likes to visit. You need 22 shops divided into 8 categories, so we graded the chosen shops on the basis of cost and preference.
Train Station Deeds (4 cards): There are 4 train stations on every board, which have now been converted into my sister’s favorite restaurants! You will not believe the amount of time we spent debating over which restaurant is the best.
Utility Deeds (2 cards): Similarly, the two utility cards were changed to Phone Bill and Wi-Fi charges.
- The easiest way to make the deeds and customise the colors is through using Photoshop. We found this amazing file that allows you to edit the front and back of all the cards. Here is the link for the site.
- If you would like to use our cards, the template is here. You can also choose to make each of the cards by hand. But, make sure to have them laminated, or they will spoil over time. After we used the link to design our cards, we printed them out on thick white paper and cut them out for use.
Back of the Deed Cards (Mortgage): For the back of the cards, we printed small stickers with rates written. These were directly stuck onto the cards we made earlier. To add more detail, we had printed the back of the cards in another color.
Community chest & Chance Cards: Every game of Monopoly has 32 Community Chest and Chance cards (16 each). We customised these by,
- The titles were changes to Tiffany Boxes and Tickets, where the boxes were presents and tickets were expenses.
- We also worked out a list of instructions for each set of cards. This is where things get interested. For example, one expense was “Got caught bunking a lecture, pay a fine of $25.” Or one present was, “Your documentary did well at a film festival. Receive $100.”
You get the idea, personalize the cards to the life of the person and make it a lot more quirky.
Dice, Houses & Hotels: Houses and Hotels don’t really make sense in a Retail Therapy Monopoly Set, so we switched them to Stores and Malls. There are 32 stores and 12 Malls.
Dice: For the dice, we dipped it in gold and silver paint.
Stores & Malls: We painted the houses in silver and the hotels in gold
Board: The board is the most time consuming aspect of this DIY. If this is done, these rest doesn’t take much time. Here, are the steps,
- Cut the cardboard to the dimensions 20”x20”.
- Draw out lines, making clear markings on the board. An easy way to do this, is to print a full size image of the board and trace the lines onto your board. You can also draw them out (like we did). Each edge is 1.5”x2.5” and each corner is 2.5”x2.5”. We started with drawing 2.5” lines on all four sides of the board. Next, came the four corners, which are 2.5” wide. Lastly, the individual spaces have to be marked between the corners. There are 9 spaces between two corners.
- Fill in the colors for each of the spaces. We wanted a gradient effect (the cards need to match).
4. Once the spaces have been colored, the details have to be entered. It can be handwritten, printed on paper or printed on stickers. We went with option three and printed stickers using our Stickers template. You’ll notice, we played around with the Tax options on the board and switched them to Spa and Parlour.
5. Place the stickers based on their value and information. You can keep a picture of the board handy, so as to avoid confusion.
6. Paste the stickers onto the board. Make sure they are in line.
7. Draw out the spaces for the centerpiece, Tiffany boxes (community chest) & Tickets (Chance). The centerpiece is in the centre of the board and can vary in size. The other two boxes are 2.5”x3.5”. Place them in the corners.
Yess! This is the ideal mid-way point for the board. And you can choose to skip the rest of the steps, & start playing directly. OR, you can follow these steps and give more finish to the board. I would recommend going through all of the steps. Because, quite frankly, how many times are you going to make a Monopoly Board?
8. Doodle around the lines in the center to add more color and body to the board.
9. The last step is the crowning glory of the board, as it ties all the components together. We decided to make a simple centerpiece on a separate piece of thick white paper. First, we drew out 3 outlines and a giant monopoly in capitals. Second, was painting the outlines and title in shades of our gradient. And third was cutting and pasting the sheet in the space we marked out.
Counters and Money: For the counters and money, we decided to use the parts we had from our old set. But, you can also choose to print the money (google search shows the notes). Or, if you would like to personalise the set even further, you can design & print the money as well. For the counters, you can use knick knacks from around the house.
Bonus: We doodled the same pattern on the box for all the game!
I understand this is quite a long process. So, if you would like, we can help you out?
How do you like our Personalised Monopoly Board? Which other games would you like to see custom boards for? Let us know! – PA