Back in November I posted about my Easy DIY Bench.
So many people asked about the map on Facebook, that I promised I’d do a tutorial. It took four months to finally post, but here you go…
I’ve always loved the look of decorating with maps.
Interestingly, it was this image I spotted about five years ago (no clue where!) that sparked the idea.
The cost to frame a map that huge would be well, huge. Like a thousand dollars huge. So I decided to get a little crafty instead.
I ordered this map from the National Geographic store.
They have tons of sizes and colors (even IKEA has large wall maps), but mine is the one above in 73″ x 48″ and it’s humongous. Not bad for $29.95.
I went to Lowe’s and picked up four giant pieces of trim. Wander around the trim aisle and pick the one you like best. I went with a simple one, like the white one below:
I also bought a mitre box and saw combo like this one,
two cans of this stuff,
and a lot of this glue.
Lastly, I asked the guys at FastSigns in Montgomeryville to cut me a piece of foam core board that was as large as my map.
When I got home, I used double-sided tape to mount the map to the foam core board, but I think I should have used a spray adhesive. You’re on your own on that one, but I’d look for one that’s acid-free and photo safe.
I measured the width and height of the outer brown border of the map cut my four pieces of trim to fit. (Tip: If you’re using the same map I did, don’t just cut your trim so that it’s the length and width of the entire map. You want to be able to lay and glue the trim frame onto that white edge outside the brown border.)
Then, I spray painted each piece individually and entirely (except the back). I’m pretty sure I did two coats and might have used two cans of spray paint, but it’s been five years, so that’s as best as I can recall!
After the trim is COMPLETELY DRY, you want to glue all four corners together and let them dry for forever. Like at least a couple days. I know it’s tempting to pick it up and start hanging, but you HAVE to wait it out. (Tip: I remember positioning really heavy books around and on top of the trim to hold it in place the entire time it was drying. Make sure you have a large enough space to lay it and leave it for a few days.)
Pull out the Gorilla Glue again a few days later to glue the frame to the map, and use those same heavy books to hold it in place the entire time it’s drying. Again, wait at least a couple days for it to be completely dry.
Then, HANG IT UP!
I nailed that little strip of picture-hanging teeth into the top center of the back of the frame, and just hung it with a single nail. The map isn’t heavy at all, just bulky.
I bought little orange pin flags like these
and I use them to mark every place Mike and I have traveled to since we’ve been together. We joked to friends last weekend that we haven’t added a pin in a few years (pregnancy, baby, toddler, busy businesses, etc.) but we’ve got some fun trips planned this year for family weddings, and I’m psyched to add a few more. Assuming I can find where I put the little box five years ago…