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Playroom Changes – Map Wall Art

How is it Thursday night already? Between field trips, Dr. appointments and various after school activities, this is the first chance I’ve had to crack open my laptop this week! I wanted to pop in and share some changes I’ve made in the playroom. I think I mentioned this summer how this room got yet another redo since our living room furniture found it’s way up here after we inherited my mom’s furniture.

A dining room table in front of a window

I felt like with the new white couches up here and mostly white walls I needed something dark to give some contrast. You may remember I painted our mudroom cabinets this gorgeous gray color and I conveniently had leftover paint just begging to be used somewhere else in our house (spoiler: it may have found it’s way a few more places too – stay tuned!). The darker color board and batten totally gave me the contrast I wanted and bonus – hides purple crayon SO much better than the white.

A living room filled with furniture and a large window

My kids have been obsessed with maps lately and different parts of the world. I think part of this has to do with the Mr. reading them bedtime stories in different accents. His level of commitment to reading all of Harry Potter in different English accents was equal parts impressive and annoying – just ask my kids!

A room filled with furniture and vase on a table

“JUST READ IT LIKE A NORMAL PERSON DADDY!!!” and “MOMMA, DADDY THINKS HE IS BEING FUNNY WITH THOSE VOICES AGAIN!” was a nightly occurrence around here…at least she has realized he isn’t “normal” at such an early age ha :)

They clearly still haven’t mastered their geography though, as my daughter came home from school proclaiming that Daddy and her teacher were both Canadian!! This was news to the Mr. as he was in fact born in California and not Canada, to which my sweet 2nd grader responded “Oh well, that’s basically the same thing!” #momfail

I thought adding some fun vintage map wall art would add some color and charm to this corner and possibly clear some things up for my sweet kiddos. So I hit up my local antique store and grabbed a few old travel maps for a few bucks each.

A painting on the wall

I made these really fancy frames for them. All I did was tack the maps where I wanted them to the wall with pushpins. Then I measured and cut some scrap pieces of wood to size. I stained them with leftover stain I had on hand. Once they dried I used my nail gun to just nail the individual pieces of wood right to the wall over top of the maps to keep them in place. The wood isn’t attached to each other, just the wall. This was basically pure laziness on my part, but hey it worked!

A chair sitting in front of a window

I grabbed these fun floral stems from Hobby Lobby and stuck them in my Ikea containers. Another vintage globe adds a pop of color and confusion to this corner as now I have to answer questions like what’s the USSR? Maybe an actual current map could be a good idea…

I’ll be sharing the rest of the room soon so stay tuned!

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  1. Just found this site..love it!The map treatment was spectacular for an old English map in my office!

  2. Hi Kelly! Can you tell me how far apart you spaced the battens on the wall treatment? Thanks! Looks great!!

  3. Just read an article in the July issue of This Old House about the redesign of your son’s bedroom; I loved the colors, the artwork, the nautical theme, and your great $15 trundle bed find!! Look forward to seeing more of your ideas and designs.

  4. Oh my gosh, this seriously had me laughing:
    When did you come to my house and record my kids???
    Love your projects, thanks for the inspiration!
    -Leah: )

  5. My daughter has several large maps on the wall of her room; she loves them. And she has a couple of Paris posters, too, that she got from Amazon. It gives the room a great international vibe.

    1. Oh fun, that’s my daughter’s dream to go to Paris! We have big plans to go when she graduates High School, need to make it thru 2nd grade first ha :)

  6. What a great idea! You have a never-ending supply of creative and inventive ways to decorate. This would be neat to do a map/frame for every state we visit. Thanks!! Liz

  7. Kelly,
    You somewhat redeemed your geography knowledge by displaying a second map of Michigan with most of the upper peninsula depicted. A geography lesson of Michigan should include the fact that Michigan has two peninsulas!

    1. Hey Nancy, the upper peninsula was on the backside of the other map so I had to choose! I will say my kids know the peninsulas but they call them the “upper and downer peninsulas” ha ;)

  8. Drinking my morning coffee and slowly taking in the stunning color on the cabinets. Reading your post on the wall maps and the frames. I’ve been smiling since reading “nailed the wood pieces directly to the wall.” Innovative and it gets the job done! Love it. You have a beautiful home. Keep the projects coming.

  9. I do like the looks of the room and it is great that your kids are interested in geography. I can’t believe how many GROWN people don’t know anything about the US. We were in Florida and someone from the East Coast (New York) and asked where we were from. We said Indiana — he responded is that close to Arizona. And in the same breath asked if the Gulf was made up of salt water. Yes indeed!! What are they teaching in school? He was at least in his late 50’s and NOT foreign born — like a Canadian :-). Can’t wait to see the rest of the redo.

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