Wednesday, February 12, 2014


Valentine's day is on Friday. Do you have a gift for your loved one yet? Josh and I have been doing budget challenges for holidays where we each give and receive a gift. Since our anniversary gifts were such a hit, we did it for Christmas too. I made Josh an antique map to hang on his wall and track where he's been. This would be a great V-day gift too. You could even personalize it to be a map specifically of where you two met, got married, etc. <3

DIY: Antique Map
Step 1: Assemble your supplies.

For this project you will need:
A wooden board
A map
Wood stain
A candle and matches or a lighter
Modge Podge
A paint brush (or two if you're lazy like me)
Sand paper
Spray sealant to coat everything
Note: All supplies were less than $35

Step 2: Sand the wood.

This was the most annoying step to me. But do it anyway, it will allow the stain to actually get on the wood. Also, this makes a mess. I didn't believe my mom, Kevin or Kathy but when I did it in the garage I proved them right... dust everwhere. Even on my pig slippers. 

Step 3: Stain the wood.

Follow the instructions on the wood stain. But basically you just paint it on and then rub it in / rub the excess off with an old rag. I threw the rag out after and the brush too because they were pretty coated. Make sure they are cheap and disposable.

Step 4: Trim the map.

If you map is larger than the wood like mine was, measure it and trim it to fit. I used string because I was ghetto and didn't have a ruler. It worked just fine to get straight lines. 
Note: If you plan to burn the edges for a distressed look, make sure to leave about an inch or two on each side to have something to burn. 

Step 5: "Antique" the edges by burning.

This is pretty much as scary as it sounds. Just kidding!
But seriously, test a scrap piece of the map / paper that you cut off and don't need to see how fast it burns. Then just light the edges on fire briefly and blow them out when you reach the desired edge. This is not a science so leave yourself extra room and have water near by just in case. I also did this step outside. While it was 25 degrees. And I froze!

Step 6: Modge Podge the map to the stained wood.

The wood needs to dry overnight. 
Once that has happened and the stain is set and you can touch it without getting it on your hands, you're ready to go. 
Lay out the map in the desired location to make sure it fits. 
Liberally paint a coat of Modge Podge on the back of the map.
Slap it on the wood and smooth out as you paint Modge Podge over top.
This was the hardest part and the map bubbled / puckered in places for me. 
Just go slowly and keep adding Modge Podge and smoothing until it sticks. The Modge Podge will be all over your fingers but it comes off with soap and water. 

I also did this in the garage. :)

It should be totally coated at the end. Don't worry, it will dry clear.

Step 7: Let it dry over night.

Wrap that baby up. It's gorgeous!

And then give it to your loved one. :)

Let me know if you try this project and how it turns out!


  1. Very cute! I love maps, and definitely maps as decor. Looks like it was a hit!

  2. It was! I think I'll make a series of wall hangings after we get married of where we met and where we married. :)


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