Maps have forever fascinated with their visual introspection and air of refinement. Drawing the viewer closer with rich illustration and graphic detail, they have the power to transport us to the places we have traveled, as well as to those of which we have only dreamed. Here is our inspiration for some favorite DIY projects with maps.
Anchored with an overlay made from new and used maps, this well-plotted tabletop can celebrate a recent trip abroad or an eagerly awaited bon voyage party. Romanticize the journey itself with an assemblage of paper airplane place-card holders made from two-sided color copies of secondhand maps. Skillfully folded, the airplanes can also float from a chandelier on decorative baker’s twine. In the spirit of vintage airmail, the place cards and party invitations sport lively striped borders, and travel-related elements such as faded postcards, an old Girl Scout compass, and muslin napkins printed with antique maps make special keepsakes for guests. Download our Map-Inspired Invitations and Placecards for your party.
Intricate renderings composed with striking detail, interesting shapes, and graceful script, maps of all kinds give academic panache to any home interior. A gift bouquet sends a more heartfelt message when wrapped with a map meaningful to the receiver.
An accent pillow becomes an objet d’art when constructed around a fabric-panel print of an Old-World exploration chart. A scholarly desktop showcases travel mementos that are easy to re-create. For original stationery with a destination theme, design a series of plain note cards printed with downloadable map images of the regions you have visited. To personalize photos from a special trip, decoupage an old picture frame with a map explicit to the journey.
For more map-themed décor ideas, see “Global Impact,” from the July/August 2011 issue of Victoria magazine.