This project started out as failed wall art and I was so frustrated that I wanted to torch the canvas that I had just spent so much time on! A couple of beers later and some brainstorming, I realized it would turn out okay and it was exactly what I needed for another project I wanted to start! I combined my screw-up canvas with my love of travel and vintage postcards to make a one-of-a-kind cork board travel map!
16” by 20” stretched canvas
Acrylic paint – in your color of choice (I’ve been obsessed with Bahama Blue by Americana)
Paint brush/foam brush
Map template – I used this U.S. map template from Design Sponge!
(You can zoom in to make an even bigger map, but you will need to adjust the size of your canvas. I kept the standard size.)
(You can buy it by the square or in a roll – I prefer buying it by the roll in case you mess up, you have plenty of leftover!)
The end measurements of my cork board map are 12 ½” from California to New York and 8” from Minnesota to Texas!
Vintage postcards, photos, maps, etc
(I didn’t want to destroy actual postcards, so I just did a Google Image Search for vintage postcards and printed out my favorites!)
Krylon’s High Strength Spray Adhesive
My failed chevron art : ( haha
As I said before, I was working on a chevron background for another project and didn’t like the outcome. I decided to paint over it completely, but left the sides. I really likes the striped pattern on the edges and it has a fun texture because of the chevron pattern previously painted on.
(1.) Start by covering your canvas with a layer of paint. Let it dry 30-45 minutes. You can paint a second coat on or leave as is. (2.) Next print out your map template and piece together. I just folded the edges where I needed to and taped it together. (3.) Cut it out and pin it to your cork board. (4.) Using an ink pen, trace around the edges of the map.
(5.) Use scissors or an X-acto knife to cut out the cork board map. If using a roll of cork board, place two heavy items at the edge of your map to keep it from rolling up. (6.) Using your paper map template as a guide, place your post cards or photos around the canvas so you can plan how you want it to look. (7.) Spread a layer of Mod Podge on the backside of the photo and place down on the canvas. Smooth out wrinkles and air bubbles as much as you can. (8.) Continue with remaining photos and then coat the entire canvas in Mod Podge to seal them in. If you’re using printed out photos like I did, the Mod Podge will give them that glossy finish like a real postcard!
(9.) In a well-ventilated area, spray the back of your cork board map and then place onto your canvas. (10.) Press down on the center and edges for 20 seconds at a time. (11.) Place a few heavy items on top of the map and set in a safe place to dry. If you have any trouble with certain edges (Florida and Maine gave me trouble!) you can just put a small dab of Mod Podge underneath and press down and hold until it stays. (12.) Once it’s dry, throw a few pins in places you’ve visited, and hang it up!
Enjoy your new wall art and happy traveling!