Watch out, awesome mom coming through…

We have a great house, it’s taken a lot of work, but it’s great. It’s home. And as much as I love it, I have to admit- it lacks character. Our last house oozed character, but lacked space. So in this house I’m really trying to bring some fun conversation pieces into it.

A lot of the time I search the web and will come up with amazing projects. If the kids will love it or think that it’s ‘cool’, then that just gets me even more motivated! Hence my recent project… a rock climbing wall in my son’s room!


Now before I get into the nitty gritty of this project, if you’re considering doing it, below is the list of supplies that you’ll need.

  • Bulletin board paper
  • 4′ level
  • Marker
  • Carpenter’s pencil
  • Scissors
  • Stud finder
  • 3/4″ plywood (I used birch)
  • Saw (circular saw would be ideal- I couldn’t get ours to work, so I used a jig saw)
  • Sand paper
  • Sander (much easier using this than by hand)
  • 5/16  2.5″ Lag bolt
  • Washers
  • Drill
  • Drill bit (to make a hole large enough for your lag bolt)
  • Hammer
  • Rock climbing holds
  • Socket wrench
  • Hex screw

So I decided to begin doing this project while my hubby and kiddos were away. I’d classify myself as a fairly handy person and I really wanted to surprise my son. Turns out I only got some of it done before they returned because we had a sick bunny and that took most of my attention. But it was great to have some help from the whole family.

The first thing I did was research. I checked out these blogs for helpful tips and ideas. I then ordered the hand holds and got some bulletin board paper. I mapped out the shapes that I wanted on the wall using the paper (and a 4′ level and marker). Studs are 16″ apart, so make sure when you’re cutting your shapes that they are longer than 16″. I then used scissors to cut the shapes out. I then went to my local hardware store and got the remaining supplies.

When I got home I took the shapes and placed them onto my plywood (I got two 2’x4′ pieces because that’s what would fit in my car, but you could also get larger sheets.) I then traced the shapes and numbered them in order of how they would go on the wall (kind of like a puzzle.)

After that I cut the pieces out and sanded down all the sides and any rough edges. I then wrote their assigned number on them and took them to my son’s room. I took the bulleting board paper shapes and taped them to the wall so I could visualize where everything would be placed.

Next I had my hubby figure out which breaker went to that room and we turned off the electricity. I used the 4′ level and a stud finder to located and map out all of the studs.

After that I wanted a nap, but trudged on. I had my hubby hold up the pieces of wood as I used the drill and bit to put 4 holes into the plywood (2 for each stud.) I then took down the wood pieces and placed the holds where we wanted them.

After that I drilled holes where the holes in the hand holds were and took the plywood pieces outside. While outside I made the hand hold holes (say that three times fast) larger with a bigger bit and flipped the boards over so that the side that would be against the wall was facing up. The holds that I purchased came with a metal “backing” that was to be hammered into the board for extra support so I had the kids help with this step (I did some of them too.)

When all of the hammering was done, I took the boards back into the room and using the lag nuts, washers, and socket wrench I affixed them to the wall.

Next I took the hand holds and using the screws, washers, and hex screw that they came with them I screwed them into the pre-drilled and hammered holes (where we just put the backing).


After a few days (other people’s only took hours, but I got distracted easily and had a few other projects going on too) we are the proud owners of an awesome climbing wall that is sturdy enough that it even holds us adults! Bonus!


Have any great ideas to add character to your house or make some living spaces more fun? I love to hear about them in the comment section below!

Enjoy the moment!