Make & Play: 5 Creative DIY Games

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Maybe it's because it's cold outside (or maybe I'm just getting older), but these days I'd much rather spend a night in playing checkers or chess than going out on an all-night bender. And when do-it-yourself game boards are this cute and creative, why not make a whole night of it?

The first step is to make one of these custom creative boards — then all that's left to do is stock up on drinks and invite some friends over to break it in. Whether it lasts for a lifetime or just until it rains, no doubt everyone will have a blast.

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Bottlecap Checkers
Start stashing colorful bottle caps to make this canvas checkers board from Martha Stewart. As a bonus, it's totally portable for road trips or picnics.

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Candy Checkers
With this printable free download from The Neighborhood and some favorite candy, create this edible checkers set as a gift or a great kids' party activity. Win a piece, eat a piece.

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Hardware Chess Set
Aimee of Clones N Clowns made this entire chess set from scratch, assembling the board from cut wood and putting together the pieces with assortments of hardware store nuts and bolts. For an easier version, just try to replicate her unique chess pieces and use an already-assembled found or bought board.

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Wooden Wahoo
You don't need major woodshop skills to make this timeless natural Wahoo board (it's a game like Aggravation or Parcheesi). All you'll need is a basic drill and a good ruler. Amelia of The Homebook shared the full tutorial on You Are My Fave. If Wahoo doesn't sound like your thing, you could still make a set of those hand-painted wooden dice to keep around.

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Lawn Twister
A cardboard stencil and a few of cans of spray paint is all you need for an outdoor game of Twister on the lawn (well, plus a spinner or caller). Katie of You+Me tackled this perfectly for her husband's 40th birthday party.

(Image credits: Clones N Clowns; Martha Stewart; The Neighborhood; You Are My Fave; You+Me)