10 Ideas for Decorating with Maps | Midwest Living

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10 Ideas for Decorating with Maps

Give paper maps or atlases new life in your home as decor that evokes your favorite trips, places you've lived -- or dream destinations.
  • Map-tastic decor

    Want a stylish way to pay homage to your favorite travel destinations or the places you've lived? Apply maps to home accents, such as side tables or shadow boxes. Any atlas pages or city or state maps will do—and their pastel hues inspire a coordinating color scheme. Don't have a map stash? Find fun vintage options online or at antiques shops. Think of it as decorating in the right direction.

    Patchwork paper: For bargain wallpaper, cover an accent wall with pages pulled from atlases. Starting in the middle of the wall, apply one page using decoupage adhesive. Repeat, overlapping edges, until the wall is covered. Note: This application is permanent. For a similar yet temporary effect, decoupage pages to large plywood or foam-core boards, and hang or lean them against a wall.

    Mapped-out furniture: An old painted cabinet quickly becomes a conversation piece when you decoupage a single state map to the front. To continue the travel theme, display books, mementos, postcards and photos from favorite trips.

  • Sweet home replicas

    Play up the states you've called home. Decoupage a map of each state to one side of a small wooden house (available at crafts stores). Paint sides with colors pulled from maps. Group on a side table or other display spot.

  • Show-off boxes

    To document trips, create shadow boxes with neighborhood or city maps mounted in back. (You can trim small city maps from larger road maps.) Add souvenir buttons, wine corks, concert tickets and other vacation keepsakes.

  • Frame it

    One of the simplest ways to display a map is to put it in a pretty frame. Add other trinkets in coordinating colors for a pulled-together look on your mantel.

  • Split it up

    Get a bit more artsy by splitting a single map among multiple frames. If you have a map that is worn, this technique hides the fold lines.

  • Put the "place" in place mat

    Laminate maps to create fun and casual place mats. Bonus points if you can match the place mats with a regionally inspired dish.

  • Destination doorway

    Adding maps to the back of this French door creates visual interest -- as well as added privacy. Don't have a French door? Cover a basic cabinet door with maps for a quick facelift.

  • Roaming dreams

    Create a unique headboard with decoupaged maps. Keep it casual by overlapping pieces—there's no need to line up the edges perfectly.

  • Wrap with maps

    If you like to bring back gifts from your travels, wrap them in a map for a special touch (and a hint to what's inside).

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