I found this beautiful map from National Geographic and was instantly inspired to use it as the main artwork in my older son's bedroom. He is into US geography right now and it works perfectly with his patchwork quilt. At $29.95, it gave me maximum impact for minimal dollars.
Want to try it yourself? Here's what you need:
- The map (or poster, flag, whatever).
U.S. Map (Earth-toned)
This is the one that I have from National Geographic.
World Map (Earth-toned)- This is the world version from Amazon.
- Door frame molding
- Corner blocks (mine have stars on them but they come in different designs)
- Finishing nails
- Liquid nail (or other glue)
- Wood filler
- Saw - I used a power miter saw but a hand saw would work just fine.
Here's how I hung it and framed it:
1. The map is stuck to the wall with Zots Adhesive Dots. We call them booger dots around here, but Zots sounds much nicer. You can find them in the scrapbooking section of any craft store. I linked to them on Amazon so you can see what you're looking for. They're super sticky so they hold the weight of the map, but they're not permanent (as far as I can tell). If they rip down the drywall when I take this down in a few years, I'll let you know.
2. Choose your corner pieces and molding. You can find the corner blocks in with the decorative wood trim at Lowes and Home Depot. I used them because then I didn't have to miter the corners of the trim...and because they look cool. But mostly because of the miter thing. The trim is a door frame molding. This particular molding is a composite and it's pre-primed. Super easy to work with.
3. Figure out where you want your corner blocks and trim to go. Mine cover up about 3" of the map on all sides. The easiest thing to do is to put your corner blocks in place temporarily with the Zots and measure how long your molding pieces need to be.
4. Cut your molding to length. I used a power miter saw (just 'cause I could) but you could definitely do this with a hand saw or a miter box.
5. Spray prime the corner star blocks and paint the trim and the corner blocks. I used Olympic paint in Star Spangled. It's the perfect blue for a project like this. I've gotten a ton of mileage out of one gallon of this paint. I used it on these shutters, this headboard and now this frame.
6. Hang your molding. I started by hanging the top horizontal piece. Try and find a stud when you're putting in the nails. (Insert your own stud-joke here.) I used 2-1/2" finishing nails and pounded them in by hand.
7. Then I countersunk them with a nail punch. Again, I linked to Amazon so that you can see what I mean. You use the punch to drive the nail further into the molding so it's not sticking up. Make sense?
8. Add your corner blocks as you go. These are also nailed in place. When I couldn't nail them into a stud (have another stud joke?), I added a teeny-tiny dot of Liquid Nail behind them to make sure that they don't move.
I dreaded writing this post. Honestly, I think the writing and explaining took longer than the actual doing. And I still fear that it's not clear enough.
Once you have the supplies, it comes together quickly. Unless you're like me and have to make 83 trips back down the stairs to shave "just a tiny hair more" off the length of each board to make them fit.