This DIY painted rock tic-tac-toe travel game was the easiest upcycled craft project ever! Now I can carry this game in my purse for instant fun with the kids no matter where we are.

All it took were basic craft supplies I already had on hand, a free canvas bag, and some rocks from the front yard. Keep reading to see just how simple this project was!

DIY Painted Rock Tic-Tac-Toe Travel Game for On-The-Go Fun!

About a month ago, I purchased a necklace online, and when it arrived, it was packaged in a cute little canvas bag.

Being the craft supply hoarder that I am (and much to my husband’s chagrin), I knew I could put that bag to use somehow in a project, so I held onto it.

I first thought about upcycling it into a tooth fairy tote, but since my oldest son, Rowan, has become obsessed with playing tic-tac-toe (thanks, Papa), I decided an on-the-go game would be of more use to us.


Here’s what I used for this easy DIY project:

  • Small canvas bag
  • Rocks
  • Spray paints (red & blue)
  • Paint pens (white, black, orange, & green)
  • Black Sharpie
  • Clear gloss spray sealant

I’ve recently gotten into rock painting thanks to our local kindness rock group (it’s so much fun!), so I have a collection of rocks on hand.

The smallest ones came from our front yard in a rather, ummm, unique landscaping idea that the previous owners had. While their plants may now be long gone (hallelujah!), their rocks have been granted a new life, and due to their tiny size, they’d be perfect X and O game pieces.

Painting the Rocks

The first step in this simple DIY project was to give the rocks some color, and all it took was a little spray paint.

Since I have two boys, I chose red and blue as the teams’ colors (and notice how I coordinated the paint colors with the boxes?? Yep, that was intentional. And yep, I’m a weirdo.).

Preparing the Bag

While the rocks were drying/baking in the hot Alabama sun, I got to work on what my husband refers to as the hashtag bag (#bag?).

I first thought about using my Silhouette Cameo and some flocked black heat transfer vinyl to make the grid, but then I decided to be lazy and just drew it on with a black Sharpie instead.

It worked just as well and was (probably) much faster, once I got the lines of the grid evenly spaced.

Now that the rocks were dry, it was time to give them their X’s and O’s.

(“She used to tie her hair up in ribbons and bows. Sign her letters with X’s and O’s…” Any Trisha Yearwood fans in the house?)

Moving on…

For this step, I used my favorite paint pens for rock painting and drew them on the rocks in white.

That was all I was planning on doing at first, but because I can’t leave well-enough alone, I decided to add some extra embellishments.

Like polka dots. And black outlines.

Now the rocks/game pieces REALLY rock. Haha! Sorry, I couldn’t resist….

The final step was braving the miserable Bama heat and humidity one more time to seal the freshly painted rocks with some clear gloss spray sealer.

This would protect the paint while rattling around in their bag and bumping into each other.

My Completed DIY Painted Rock Tic-Tac-Toe Travel Game

And here’s our final painted rock tic-tac-toe travel game!

It’s SO simple but still cute, and most importantly, it’s portable, convenient, and FUN for my boys!

Mom Win, right here.

Since the rocks are so small and the bag is so lightweight, it weighs next to nothing and takes up minimal space. Therefore, I can easily keep it in my purse and pull it out when needed.

Like when you’re on vacation with your Papa and waiting for your food at a restaurant and he challenges you for the Tic-Tac-Toe Championship.

Those kiddie menus and crayons got nothing on this! 😉

If You Enjoyed This…

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