How to Create Play Money in Different Amounts

Written by dennis lee chapman
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How to Create Play Money in Different Amounts
Creating play money is similar to creating real money. (devises du monde entier image by Clément Billet from

Creating your own play money can be fun, but to have the most educational value and realistic experience with play money, consider several things when designing your fake currency. Paper quality, print runs, marks on the bills themselves to distinguish them from one another (size being one of them), sovereign authority issuing the notes (and a corresponding bust), and clearly marked areas that denote the amount of the currency are all essential to making the best play money.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • High-quality paper
  • Ruler
  • Multicoloured Pens (red, blue, black, yellow)
  • Scissors

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  1. 1

    Map out the paper using the ruler and black pen to create rectangles of equal size and shape. To do this, draw evenly spaced lines on the horizontal side of the paper and evenly spaced lines on the vertical side. Make sure to space the lines on the horizontal side at least two inches to allow enough room to make the design. Make one side longer by spacing one side's lines with less distance between lines. As you can see, this will flatten each rectangle.

    How to Create Play Money in Different Amounts
    Play money should be longer than wide -- just like real money. (white wall grid pattern image by Radu Razvan from
  2. 2

    Draw out the template design in one of the rectangles. Each currency denomination will need a different template. The template should include the amount, pictures, text, and the name of the bank that will honour the notes, e.g., Bank of England.

    How to Create Play Money in Different Amounts
    Each template will contain a different amount. (currency image by Joann Cooper from
  3. 3

    Write the numbers corresponding to the value of the currency in each of the four corners on the face and back of the template. Be creative in how you draw the numbers -- play currency should have realistic features like detailed or ornate numbering and lettering, but can also be artistic.

    How to Create Play Money in Different Amounts
    The design of you rnumbers can be creative and fun. (numbers image by Amer Delibasic from
  4. 4

    Draw a bust of a famous person from your imaginary country. Play money is funnier if this bust is of an animal, like a cat or a dog. You could also make the bust your friends, family or a character from a favourite TV show.

    How to Create Play Money in Different Amounts
    In turkeys we trust? (turkey image by Bobi from
  5. 5

    Redo your template design into at least 10 separate grids so that you have enough to distribute among those who will "spend" your currency. Cut them out evenly so that each one looks as identical to the other as possible. Do this by holding them all together in piles of ten and cut out with scissors.

    How to Create Play Money in Different Amounts
    Symmetry is good for play money. (uk currency - notes image by Christopher Nolan from

Tips and warnings

  • The more time you spend in making your play money realistic, the more fun it is to pretend to use your currency.
  • If you have a computer with a graphics program and printer, you could design the whole thing on the computer and print out as many copies as you wish.
  • If you have a scanner or even a mobile phone camera, you could scan or take a photo of your drawn currency and print it out on a computer, which will make identical copies of a single template.
  • Play money is not real money, so do not try to spend your play money at stores.
  • Do not attempt to counterfeit real currency as this is a serious offence that could land you in jail.

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