Decorate with Old Maps

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Using an old map with a picture frame

I am loving adding some new touches to our home. As always, I was inspired by Pinterest (how did I ever live without it?) and determined I wanted to decorate with old maps. While I was out  yardsaling I found two maps for $1 each. This is the one I chose, but I also have a little project in mind for the second one.

Using an old map with a picture frame

I got an old frame from the attic (I have several stored since I used them at my daughter’s wedding). This actual frame had a print inside but I took it out (and broke the glass doing it. Grrrrr.) I decided I was going to save the cardboard backing and use the frame anyway!

Using an old map with a picture frame

I sanded the frame but didn’t worry about being consistent or perfect (which is good because this is usually my husband’s area of expertise.)

Using an old map with a picture frame

I used a wood finish (yes, it’s probably way old but that’s okay) and applied a coat and waited a while to let it dry. I did this outside so it dried overnight. I then gave it a second coat the next day.

Using an old map with a picture frame

The stain fills in the grooves of the frame and gives it a shabby chic look that I love with just a tad of the original gold shining through.

Using an old map with a picture frame

Here’s the finished project! I’m not sure if I’d like it in glass or not. Kinda think it looks less formal without it.

Using an old map with a picture frame

I have never been good at arranging knick knacks but I’m getting a feel for combining the the things I love. The basket below blends with the decor and contains photo albums I’ve made. I love having them out where we can look at them often.

Using an old map with a picture frame

This project goes perfectly with our pallet shelf and window table. I need to distress the chest next to the couch (it’s fairly distressed on its own. It belonged to my husband when he was a child.)

Using an old map with a picture frame

Just a small project that updates our living room while still using touches that I love.

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Linking with: Sew Can Do, Between Naps on the Porch, The Thrifty Home,  My Repurposed Life, Serenity Now,

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  1. What an awesome score on those maps! You knew just what to do with them too! They do look fabulous along side your pallet shelf! Nice project!

    • Thanks, Danni. I’m not too amazingly creative but I sure know how to find things once I get inspired by someone else’s ideas! Love your blog!

  2. We love maps at our house, too. We have a huge world map over our table in our eating area. As a missionary family with a husband whose ministry now takes him traveling world wide, we find that we look at the map often during meals. It’s been fun to see how often here in the heartland of the U.S. our guests go to the map to point out where they are from or where they’ve been, too!

    I’m visiting from Inspire Me Monday.

    • Thanks for sharing! We have a son who is in seminary with a heart to serve in France. He’s going to Vietnam for a week with his praise team so we are taking a break from some regular homeschool studies and learning about Vietnam. It’s a great way to help our kids have a kingdom perspective!

  3. Two vintage maps for $1!!!! That is awesome! What a great find!
    Love your map decor….

  4. I love decorating with maps. Those maps are great finds. Good job!

  5. How pretty! I love old maps, what a great way to decorate!

  6. Have always loved the look of old maps – and since the world changes so fast the last 30 years – there are lots of them! Thanks for sharing – joining from Inspire Me Monday –

  7. Found you through Mercy INK’s link up…. love your map project! I adore maps of any kind 🙂

  8. You did an awesome job on the frame! I believe it looks better than it would have brand new.

  9. Rachel Nuckolls says:

    This is a great idea! My husband loves to spend his Saturday mornings yardsaling. I think I’m may to ask him to keep his eyes open for some old maps. Thank you for sharing!

  10. great looking project and love your room.

  11. Cool framed map – my husband loves maps. Maybe I’ll frame one for him as a Christmas present. Yours looks really good.

  12. Really looks awesome. I love old maps. The pallet shelf is amazing. Thanks for sharing. Hope to see you at True Aim!

  13. I love this. Please link it to my linky party & anything else you have to share. It just went live a little early 🙂 Thanks, Peggy.

  14. I am crazy about old maps too!! Awesome deal!! An idea for you if you would like to cover the map so it wont get too dusy. And cheap!! Go to your local Fabric store, I use a JoAnns where I live, and they should have a flexible plastic material you can buy by the yard. A great replacement for any frame with broken glass.

  15. Wow, the frame looks great! I love the look of old maps and that frame is just perfect. Thanks for sharing at The Fun In Functional!

  16. A beautiful old map and a lovely finish on your frame–I never would have thought to try wood stain to age the frame. What a great tip–thank you! I love your vignette with the basket and lamp–it works together very well!

  17. So COOL!!! What a great idea! It looks GORGEOUS!

    Thanks so much for sharing this at The DIY Dreamer.. From Dream To Reality!

  18. I love old maps and we have one that we found at an estate sale hanging in our foyer. Thanks for sharing on Tout It Tuesday! Hope to see you next week.

  19. Love the map. Glass would have been difficult to photograph…glare is the enemy for bloggers like us.

    • Yes, glass is hard to photograph. One day I’m going to learn all the tips and tricks for my camera but for right now it’s just hit or miss! Thanks for stopping by!

  20. We love old maps, my daughter is like a magnet to them, and there are so many cool ways to decorate with them!

    I came over from THT, please come by my new Blog, The Pink Geranium!

  21. Fantastic idea…
    Thanks for sharing.

  22. Looks great! I think I prefer it without glass as well. The frame looks great, too. Wonderful job!
    Visiting from The Charm of Home 🙂

  23. Love old maps. I’ve been on the lookout for a vintage school map for my office, but no luck so far. Glad to have found your blog via Serenity Now.

  24. Looks great! I adore old maps so this is a project I could get into!
    Thanks for linking up this week!
    Stacey of Embracing Change

  25. Thank you for sharing your map at Cap Creations. I too have plans for a map in my office once I ever get that done! Or should I say started lol! I already picked up my map at salvation army!

  26. I love maps, and I love seeing them in home decor. Nicely done. Thank you for sharing this at my Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House. Hope to see your prettiness again on Monday. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  27. Hi! I am your newest follower and was hoping that you would stop by and follow me back!!


  28. WOW! Aren’t you glad you scooped up those maps while you had a chance? Awesome find! 🙂

  29. I truly like to reading your post. Thank you so much for taking the time to share such a nice information.

  30. This is so cool! I love the look of old maps. Thanks so much for linking up to Creative Thursday. Can’t wait to see what you share this week! Have a wonderful week.

  31. Wow – I love the frame transformation! And you’ve inspired me to tackle the one-and-only blank wall I have in my house with the PILE of old maps I have. Thanks!

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