How to Make a DIY Push Pin Travel Map

Taking photos in every place you visit is a good way of keeping track of and showcasing your travels, but you would achieve better results by making a push pin travel map. Such a map makes it easy for you to note the places you have traveled to and the places that you need to visit.

Some people opt to buy pre-assembled push pin travel map- which I guess is pretty much okay, but doing that would take away from you the joy and fun of customizing your own map from scratch. Also, a DIY push pin travel map will save you a lot of money.

And if you are thinking about giving the map out as a gift, a map that you made on your own would give you more satisfaction than the one you would buy from the shop.

A good push pin travel map should highlight the cities and destinations that you've been to. It should give you and your visitors a quick glimpse of your travel adventures. At the same time, a world map canvas gives your living room a little decor boost.

Best Gift Ideas For Travel Lovers

Please read on to learn how to make your own push pin travel map. Here are 9 steps of making a push pin travel map.

Step I: Preps

Acquire the following items:

  • A 60cm by 90cm map.
  • A foam board the size of your map or slightly bigger. You will use it to hold your pins in place.
  • A paint of a color that blends best with your map and frame.
  • A frame big enough to hold your map. Ensure that it has pre-installed hanging hardware.
  • A foam paint roller and a couple of 1-inch foam paint brushes.
  • Sharp scissors or a precision knife for any probable cutting needs.
  • Spray adhesive that you'll use to bond the map to the foam board.
  • Weighty items such as books.
  • Smoothing tool to remove any air bubbles that may form after bonding the map to the board. The tool shouldn't be sharp otherwise it might damage the map.
  • Color-coordinated pins to mark different locations on the map.
  • A ruler and a tape

Step II: Cutting the board

  • Use your ruler to measure 60 cm by 90 cm on your foam board and then mark each dimension using the tape. The edges of your measured outline should be perfect right angles.
  • Join the marked edges with straight lines to form a rectangle.
  • Cut the board along the lines drawn. Use your sharp precision knife or scissors to do this.

Step III: Glue the board

  • Use the spray adhesive to glue the boar. Spray adhesive is preferred for this step because it dries up evenly, leaving little or no lumps. To get a perfect bond, apply as much adhesive as possible, though you should be careful not to go overboard.

Step IV: Place the map

  • Carefully place your map on the board ensuring that the edges are well in place and that the map is well stretched out.
  • Using your smoothing tool, smooth out any visible air bubbles. Run the tool over the map as many times as necessary until the bond is perfect and the glue is evenly distributed.
  • Place the map facing the ceiling and place your heavy books on top of it. Leave the setup like that for a couple of hours so that the map can bond well on the board.

Step V: Prep the frame

  • Paint your frame and leave it for 30 minutes to dry. If it won't have dried up by then, give it all the extra time it needs. While at it, remember to use the right colors that blend well with your map and color walls.
  • Use your 1-inch brushes to get into the crevices of the frame.
  • Add another coat of paint and then leave it to dry. That gives it a more complete, finished look.

Step VI: Frame the map

  • Your map must be well dried up by now. Place it carefully in the frame ensuring that the edges remain intact. Remember to keep the map facing up.

Step VII: Pin your map

  • Start by downloading a good pinning legend from a reputable website and then printing it out.
  • Glue the legend to one corner of your map.
  • Mark your travel destinations using the push pins. The advantage of having multi-colored pins is that you can mark past travels, upcoming travels, and dream destinations using different colors.
  • When placing your pin, try to only mark the major cities and country capitals only to avoid overcrowding the map.

Step VIII: Hang the map

  • Hang the map on the wall directly opposite the entrance door. That makes it the focal point of your living room so that every visitor walking through the door can see it.

Step IX: Decorating the map

  • If you have any collectibles from your past travels, this is a perfect chance for you to showcase them. place them strategically and neatly on either side of the DIY world map canvas.
Kalyan Panja