Thursday, June 13, 2013

Where in the world have we been map

So this is yet another tale of it-was-sitting-in-the-garage-for-three-months-before-I-did-it. There are a lot of those, if you haven’t noticed. It is how I do.

I’ve mentioned like 50 times that one of the things about our basement that I LOVE is the potential for the walls – there are a ton of them. There are not in the rest of the house (open concept, few walls without windows, I’m really not complaining, it’s a great problem to have).

But I do love having a space that has expanses of wide open walls ready to be decorated in the basement. There’s this one that you see when you get down the stairs:

Gloriously empty. And big.

Months ago on a trip to IKEA (I think I got this six months ago?), I picked up one of their huge wall maps. It wasn’t necessarily cheap, but for the size (more than six by four feet), it really wasn’t too bad.

I’ve known I wanted to put it that spot but wanted to change it up a bit. At first I was going to cut the map down into three equal sizes and then mount it somehow – just for something different.

But I knew I’d need something large to mount the maps to, and I didn’t feel like spending the extra cash on big sheets of particle board and all. So it stayed in the garage. (It also lived in the dining room/library and in the mud room for a while too – I like to change up the scenery you know.)

I also had an idea I wanted to implement on the map – I wanted to make it personal and interactive for us. My plan has always been to figure out a way to note where in the world we’ve been – a way to mark where we’ve each traveled. But I didn’t want to use pins that would ruin the map and I wanted it to be safe for little visitors. I mulled over the idea for months and on the flight home from Disney last week it hit me – I knew exactly what I was going to do!

So the other night I started putting the map together…finally. It was VERY easy:

DIY map art

I didn’t get the map as taut as I wanted, but it’s fine. It was easy to put together but not so easy I was willing to do it all over again. :)

I got it hung and you know my middle name is Can’t Leave Well Enough Alone, so I knew it needed a little something. I got some of the cheap, thin lattice boards at Lowe’s, stained them and then cut them down to make a huge frame around the map:

frame around ikea map

I started out by trying to glue the wood around the edge of the map, but it wasn’t secure enough so I ended up just using my nail gun and installing it that way. The metal frame is so thin and lightweight I knew the nail would go through easily.

It worked great! And I was so happy I added the dark frame – it was the perfect way to finish it off!

The final step was to take a hole punch and some random vinyl colors I had around and start punching:

As I mentioned, I wanted this to be something personal and fun for our family, so the little dots represent each of us (red – me, silver – hubs, yellow – Bub) and I started placing them on the map. I don’t know why it took me so long to think of vinyl instead of push pins, duh, but it worked!

Hubby has been to the coolest places by far:

 DIY map artDIY map art 

Together we’ve been to some pretty amazing spots too:

 DIY map artDIY map art

And the kiddo isn’t doing too shabby in his U.S. travels, considering he’s only six:

DIY map art

That’s not even filled up yet -- I realized quickly that the dots are going to be too big. I am on the lookout for a smaller hole punch so I can keep adding to the U.S. map. :)

I love how the whole thing turned out – I stood back and realized the colors in it(blue, green and yellow with the touch of dark wood) are the exact colors I’m using throughout the basement.

huge IKEA map

Haaallooooo – perfect!

And I just love that there’s a little extra something that is significant to our family: large map for wall

You don’t really see the dots until you get up close. I think it will be fun for the kiddo to show his friends where in the world he’s been. :)

If you’ve been around for awhile you know I’ve been using a lot wood tones down in the basement – I’m going for a comfy but ever so slightly industrial/funky vibe down there. I didn’t notice till I was taking pics how well the wood frame ties in with the wood planked wall on the stairs:

large IKEA map

I meant to do that. ;)

I’m loving maps lately, obviously – I realized after it was all done that I have two hanging right next to each other down there. OH WELL. I’ll deal. Are you digging maps lately? I’ve seen them used in all kinds of new and fun ways over the past year or so. Love it!

53 comments:

  1. great idea.. I have a hole punch that punches tiny holes, should be able to find one somewhere

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  2. That is so cool! Love the idea of the vinyl dots to show where you and your family has been. That will be a great keepsake one day :-)

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  3. This is really cool...and fun...and to add other's destinations or birthplaces would be nice too! Kind of a family-tree-map!

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  4. How are the dots staying up on the map? Are you gluing them

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  5. It's so nice to surround ourselves with things that make us happy. Even if you had ten in the same room, so what! We'll just call it a collection ;) I think that it has personal meaning makes it tens times better, and it was already really cute!!

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  6. I love this! it looks like it was made for your space with those colors. I've always wanted to do something like this, but why does Europe have to be so small? like I don't want to put one pin in Holland, for example, I want it to be on the cities we went to. we're actually going to Alaska in two weeks (holy cow) and i'd love to do an Alaska specific map, you know, not just, bam. Alaska. instead, Fairbanks, denali, Juneau, etc.

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  7. Is it in a frame? I understand the lattice boards - love them - but I didn't follow the hanging part. Looks fabulous!!

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  8. Love it, what a fabulous idea. It looks wonderful and how nice to be able to trace all of your travels. Hugs, Marty

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  9. Love this! We've had the giant picture of the Flatiron district from Ikea forever, and it's so great to cover such a giant expanse of wall. It's totally a statement piece! When we get sick of the picture we've talked about just stretching some cool fun fabric across it (like you said, it's not that hard to assemble, and it's already been disassembled and reassembled once for a move and has handled it well). LOVE the map idea though; maybe we'll go that route next time!

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  10. It's awesome! I have a map sitting in a garage right now too! Among a million of other projects... "_

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  11. Love the size! Perfect for that wall!!

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  12. Love it! I am loving map art lately too and just made this for our new playroom
    http://www.welcometothemousehouse.com/2013/05/united-colors-of-love-world-map.html

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  13. I love this map. We have ours in my husbands office. We currently use thumb tacks but I love the idea of vinyl.

    Lura
    x

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  14. It looks really great! One of my daughters has a huge world map up on her bedroom wall, and she just loves it! I like the idea of marking the places one has been to -- I will have to start that with her!

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  15. BTW, do you have more info on how you made the map frame? I'd love to make a frame for my daughter's map.

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  16. Sadly, we really haven't been anywhere outside the midwest. But I just picked up a map for less than $20 from Crate & Barrel. I'm using straight pins and small adhesive labels to mark on the map where we've been through books. We're slowly filling the maps with titles written on the labels and stuck to the main location of the setting of the book. It's been fun and diminishes that feeling of "We never go anywhere!"

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  17. I love the scale of this map in your basement - it's perfect! But what I love even more is how you personalized it to your family - great idea!

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  18. I absolutely love this! It might be one of my favorite touches you have added. Wait, no...there are too many favorites to pick. ;) But I really do LOVE it!

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  19. You could keep your color and the hub's color, but switch to one color for all three of you - that would save some room.

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  20. I have this exact same map hanging in my office...love the idea of adding the buttons!!

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  21. That is such an awesome idea.. I love this post. LOVE IT

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  22. That is great! I love it! I have a big map just rolled up sitting there in my garage, hmmmm...

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  23. I'd like info on the frame also....I really like this project...well done! :)

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  24. This is a brilliant idea... over the years as the map gets full-er... it would be awesome to go down memory lane.... !!!!

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  25. It's fantastic. I might have to build a wall, just a wall that does nothing, so I can have one too. SOme family memebers might object but I think they'll get used to it. What an awesome idea and yet again you made it look so nice.

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  26. Gorgeous room and wonderful idea. And it didn't escape my notice that the lampshade tones in perfectly! Is that custom made? Do you mind me asking what the fabric is?

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  27. Great idea! Where have you been to in England? Your pin west of London is pretty much over where I live :)

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  28. Awesome how it all matches. Love the color scheme and the wood tones, it all looks so comfy in the basement.

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  29. I love that the colors coordinate with your decor! Awesome job!

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  30. love it! just didn't understand the part of the metal frame. what is it called and how do you reommend applying it? thank you for making a seemingly daunting task feasible!

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  31. love it! just didn't understand the part of the metal frame. what is it called and how do you reommend applying it? thank you for making a seemingly daunting task feasible!

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  32. Love the map...I am have done 3 in my home. I added a link of my favorite map project I have done.


    https://www.facebook.com/#!/photo.php?fbid=3393088394309&set=a.1218850039709.2034880.1482640270&type=3&theater

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  33. I work in the Geology Department at Middle TN State University. You can buy map dots (http://www.amazon.com/Map-Dot-Stickers-Assorted-Diameter/dp/B003M6PFS6/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1371218746&sr=8-3&keywords=map+dots) Amazon.com has them for your map. We use them all the time. They stick on and come in all sorts of colors. They are very small so you can still see where you've been without covering up a whole area with the bigger dots. Hope that helps! - Karen

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  34. I love your wall color, do you know what it is or what brand?

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  35. I love a big, over-sized map...and that one looks perfect on that big wall!!! Here's to hoping you cover it with dots in the next 50 years!! :) xo

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  36. You were near or in Buffalo, NY and you didn't stop in?!

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  37. I love this idea!! We just moved and I've acquired a family room!! Hooray! Love this idea for covering a wall.

    This is our first family room and it's in the basement. I've thought about removing the door upstairs. What is your opinion? I know you like to remove doors and I'm curious if you removed the basement door. For now, ours remains for several reasons- the first one being the doorway to the basement is right before the entry to the kitchen- turn too soon and you're down the stairs!

    Love your blog.. Read daily!

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  38. Great idea!!! May have to steal this one!! LOL~~Angela

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  39. I adore maps! My in-laws got us that same map last year and it is still in storage at their house ... not at all close to where we live. Your wall is perfect for it!

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  40. I am currently a map lover also. Our school recently had a garage sale and I scored 4 different of those pull down maps for a dollar each! There were about a hundred of them but I couldn't think of what the heck I would do with more and my hubby would've had a cow because we have no place to store them. As it stands, 2 of them are still propped in the corner of my dining room. I put one above the sofa in my living room and my son put another on the wall of his room. They're so fun and colorful. You can decoupage, cut them up & frame them, use them as wrapping paper...oh my goodness the possibilities!
    I love the frame that you put around the map and the wall is perfect for it.

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  41. This is awesome and a little too funny! My husband and I just got the same map at Ikea for the same thing! We are using color-coded push pins and a cork board backing (to protect the walls) for where we've, he's, and I've been. I knew it was a great idea. ;-)

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  42. Love it! I have had a large map since January that I need to frame but wasn't sure how. I love your idea and want to use it! Can you clarify how the metal part is used and where to purchase it? I would greatly appreciate it!!!

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  43. VERY nice. Your frame is lovely, and the vinyl personalization is such a great idea. I totally agree that Bub will enjoy showing people, and I think he will just plain enjoy looking at it! And learning places. How fun.
    Chrissy

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  44. I love the framing you added to your map! I want to copy your idea but I also don't follow the part of the framing that is metal - any chance you can do a follow-up to explain? Thanks for all your great ideas!

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    1. Sure! The metal part is what you attach the canvas to -- that came with the map. You have to wrap it around (it gives you instructions). The wood frame is the one I added.

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  45. We have a world map and a map of Canada up in our house. The country map is laminated so we've been able to use a dry erase marker for capital cities, cities where family lives and places we've been.

    I too would like to know a bit more about how you framed it. It is mounted on boards that are attached to the frame?

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    1. Great idea with the laminate! I just attached the lattice with a nail gun. The metal framing that comes with the map, that you wrap the canvas around, was very thin so the nails went right through it. You could also glue it but the nails worked great. :)

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