Upcycle a Tin Can Lid into a Travel Size Tic Tac Toe Board Game

5 years ago

Earth Day is on April 22nd and what's a better way to spend the day than crafting a handmade  board game with your kids? Not only are you teaching them about the value of handmade but you are helping them make a game that uses no electricity or batteries. You can create this fun travel-friendly game for your summer vacation trips!

A board game is a perfect way to keep the kids entertained during trips but the game pieces can get lost very easily, making it very frustrating to play. But here is a magnetic travel-friendly Tic Tac Toe board game you can make out of things you already have around the house or from your local Goodwill store. I found an inexpensive but slightly damaged tin can lid to make the board from a Goodwill store near me. And since I already had a collection of these non-recyclable plastic bottle caps from milk and juice cartons, I already had half of the supplies.

These plastic bottle caps are NOT recyclable so they sit in landfills, without degrading for hundreds of years. So, I collectd them, thinking, I'd use them to make something useful one day. Good thing I did!   


With some crafty glue to put all the pieces together, you have a perfect traveling companion to keep your kids entertained!  

Here is how to make travel-friendly magnetic Tic-Tac-Toe board game.

You'll Need:

  • 10 Plastic Bottle Caps - 5 in each color
  • 10 Magnet Dots
  • Tin Can Lid - size and shape of your choice
  • Fabric - any fabric remnant of your choice, big enough to cover the lid completely and over to the top
  • Modge Podge
  • A Small spool of RIbbon 
  • Hot Glue or Epoxy E 6000
  • Sponge Brush
  • Small Bowl


  • Put the lid on the wrong side of the fabric and cut the fabric about 5 inches larger than the lid. 
  • Make slits around the edge of the fabric, line the inside the lid with the fabric, right side out, and fold the pieces over the lip of the lid onto the flat surface.
  • Using the sponge brush, coat the fabric liberally with Modge Podge. Make sure to coat it well so the fabric sticks to the lid evenly, making sure to fold over the pieces over the lip. Let it dry completely for a couple of hours.
  • While the lid is drying, hot glue the magnet circles onto the outer surface of the plastic bottle caps.
  • When the lid is dried, cut the sheet cork, the size of the lid. Hot glue the cork to the surface of the lid. This will make the surface into a non-skid surface 


  • Cut the ribbon into 4 equal lengths that will fit across the lid and hot glue the ribbons, creating the Tic Tac Toe squares.
  • When the ribbons are dried, you are done!

You can make a drawstring bag, if you know how to sew with the same fabric, so you can keep the game board in one place.

I don't know about you but I still play Tic Tac Toe with my kids and the time spent on trying to beat one another is one of the best memories we have. And every time I play the game, it brings back fond memories of my own childhood. It beats any electronic games that are available today.

Tic Tac Toe board game is timeless; no electricity required, no battery required, no assembly required, will travel without losing pieces, and it's very “organic”. What is a better way to travel then playing a game, especially when you don't have to look for lost pieces?

How do you keep your kids entertained, sans electronics, when you travel?

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