5 Ways to Upcycle Maps and Globes for Home Decor

Upcycling is one of the hottest trends in this second decade of the 21st century.  We’re all looking for ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle to leave a smaller footprint on the earth our children will inherit.  It’s safe to say that repurposing is certainly easier on the pocketbook, too.  You know how much I love a good recycling project and how much I love color–so it should be no surprise that I love the projects I’ve been seeing that turn old maps into brand new decor.  Colorful and easy to find, maps can be applied to nearly anything to create eye-catching displays.  Here are five ways that I found for transforming maps and globes into real conversation pieces.

1.  Large Scale on the Wall

A recent guest here at Infarrantly Creative, Selina, showed us how to craft mural-sized wall art from a $2 thrift store map.  I like the way she used different sizes of canvas to create an unexpected graphic element to her display.

2.  Small Scale on the Mantle

Over at The Nesting Place, The Nester has some great tips for turning any size of map into a work of art.  She showed off some of her thrifty creations in a colorful mantle vignette.

3.  Old Globe Becomes Bowl

This is a fun look!  In an article titled “Style Tips for Budget Decor”, BHG.com showed how to rethink a simple vintage globe to be something else entirely–a pretty bowl.

4.  As an Accent Piece

Maps don’t need to be in perfect condition to be useful when it comes to style.  Wendy showed off a beachy vignette she made for The CSI Project, featuring this eye-catching map-wrapped candle.   The torn edge of the atlas page really provides a lot of visual interest when placed against the smooth candle.

5.  Mod Podged onto Furniture

Domestic Ease‘s Kristen came up with a brilliant idea.  You must see the way she transformed a boring, old dresser into this map-covered showstopper, with just a little paint and ModPodge.  Talk about a conversation piece!

One of the things I love about all of these projects is how you can personalize them by selecting maps of favorite vacation spots, ancestral countries, or cities you’ve lived in.  The possibilities are endless!

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  1. When we moved into our house the previous owner left an old map hanging on the wall. I left it there because I hate to throw it away and now I’m glad I didn’t! I’m not exactly sure what I’m going to do with it but you got my creative juices flowing! Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Love these ideas! I actually used that first one as one of the inspiration pieces for my own DIY Map Wall Art. Love that globe bowl! What a terrific idea! Thanks for sharing.

  3. I love upcycling and this is an excellent idea on ways to use maps from old trips!


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