9 Inspired ways to use maps in home decor

Aug 12, 2015 at 2:00 p.m. ET
Image: Omersukrugoksu/Getty Images

Outdated maps can be found anywhere: used bookstores, yard sales, even in your own home or vehicle. Don't throw them away… create something new and beautiful from these otherwise useless pieces of paper.

1. Gorgeous paper wreath

old-map-wreath

Image: RedAgapeStyle&Design

Red Agape Style & Design created this spectacular paper wreath from outdated maps. The step-by-step tutorial will walk you through it in five easy steps.

2. Vintage-look lampshade

old-maps-lampshade

Image: PrettyHandyGirl

Put a special map to prominent use. The vintage map lampshade tutorial by Brittany at PrettyHandyGirl will teach you exactly how to do it.

3. Festive garland

old-map-garland

Image: PaperNotebook/Etsy

Take inspiration from PaperNotebook, an Etsy shop in Poland. Cut maps into cute shapes and attach with thread and satin ribbon. Or buy a strand of map garland already made. Adorable! (Etsy.com, $9 for about 10 ft.)

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4. Letters from around the world

old-map-letters

Image: AthletesAbroad

An old map, an oversized letter (cardboard, wood, metal), some scissors and Mod Podge are all you need to create a perfect piece of decor for your favorite table or bookshelf. Go even farther and cover several letters to create words like F-U-N, T-R-A-V-E-L or F-A-M-I-L-Y.

5. One-of-a-kind backsplash

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Image: blog.HGTV.com

Wow, what an impressive project. Step-by-step instructions from the DIY Network will help you create your own unique backsplash.

6. Inspirational wall decor

old-map-inspirational-decor

Image: GildCollective

Turn an old map into inspirational wall decor. Jessie Deye, CEO of Gild Collective makes it super simple to use a map of your own or one that comes with the complete DIY kit. (GildCollective.com, $29)

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7. Origami lantern

old-map-origami-lantern

Image: BeadandCord

Paper lanterns are hugely popular these days and can be had for about five bucks at a discount store. But why not create your own one-of-a-kind masterpiece with a meaningful old map? You can find (and translate) the step-by-step origami instructions here.

8. Pleasing photo frames

old-map-photo-frame

Image: TenThousandVillages

We were inspired by the Grand Voyage Photo Frames made by disadvantaged artisans in Indonesia. They're made with recycled Indonesian maps and feature a coconut shell closure and thread woven from natural fiber. Support these hard-working artists, or create your own with a simple wood frames from your local craft shop. (TenThousandVillages, $44)

9. Jazzy journal

old-map-journal

Image: Ruby Murrays Musings

Remember those fun Easter baskets we made by weaving strips of construction paper? That's the concept behind this map-covered journal by Ruby Murrays Musings. Find step-by-step instructions on the blog, which features fabulous tips for reusing, recycling and repurposing all kinds of things.

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