DIY Canvas Map: Part 1

Today’s project was a gift for Matt. He is the most common outlet for my crafty experiments.

His birthday was last month and as always, I wanted to get him something different. We aren’t spending a ton of money lately with the whole wedding planning thing going on, so I tried to get creative.

I remember going to visit my friend Lauren Beaman’s house in Knoxville years ago and she had this awesome world map on the wall. It was on a canvas and in 3 pieces. It was for her and her husband Casey to put pins in for all of the places they had and would travel. I thought this would be a great gift for Matt as we both value traveling and have already been to so many amazing places.

I texted Lauren asking her where she got it and she told me that she got it from Pottery Barn years ago.

That’s not a problem of course because I knew that I could make one.

Let the craft project commence.

How to Make a Canvas Map

I got 3 canvases from Michael’s – one slightly wider than the other two and all three were the same height. I bought a world map ($7.99) from Barnes and Noble. The size of the map needs to be larger than the size of all of your canvases put together so that it will fit over all of them.

I recommend getting a map from a bookstore or online. If you buy them at Office Max or a Parent Teacher Store, they are bright primary colors for kids to learn and don’t have the rustic look that this one does.

I also got sewing pins, Mod Podge and a sponge brush.

This was a really easy project. So easy and fast, in fact, that I forgot to take pictures of each step.

Step 1: Lay the map over the 3 canvases and cut it into 3 pieces. You also may want to cut off any unattractive border on the map.

Step 2: Coat each canvas with Mod Podge and wrap the corresponding map piece on it like a present.

Step 3: Let dry and hang on the wall with about 2″ of space in between each piece.

I gave it to Matt without putting the pins in because I wanted him to pick his color and us do it together.

Matt: Blue Pins
Christy: Pink Pins
Places we’ve gone together: Green Pins

We ran out of pins so we need to get some more but you get the idea.

When I gave it to him, he loved it! We sat on the couch at his house and had so much fun remembering and putting pins in all of the places we had been. And as a bonus, my bank account loved how little I spent on a great birthday present!



Update: After a ton of questions on this project, I wrote another blog clarifying some of the instructions. Feel free to check that out if you need extra help.