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Sew Girl
"Over the years I have made several of these. Speaking from personal experience, I can tell you that these boxes -when used in the pictured position- are not strong enough on their own to hold very many books or magazines for very long. Eventually they will sag and become an eyesore. Preventing the eyesore from happening is simple - turn the boxes on their side once they are completed, and Voila! They are an EXCELLENT way to wrangle in all that clutter and chaos we often find throughout our home and office. There is also another way to make them strong and that is to REINFORCE THEM. Personally, I like to do this when I need to use the boxes for flimsier items like loose papers that have a tendency to curl on their edges if stored on their sides or when not packed tightly. Reinforcing the boxes means you can put a lot more weight into them even while they are laying flat like they are in the picture. I reinforce my boxes with a very thin wood that can be purchased at almost any hardware store - it is called Louon (my spelling is probably off but it is pronounced LEW-ON). It is very cost-effective and extremely easy to work with. Add to this that it is VERY VERSATILE and you have a great solution to making even very flimsy projects much more stable. I hope this helps! BTW USPS boxes are legal to use BUT ONLY if you PURCHASED them OR they are USED. IF you are thinking about using new boxes that were FREE from the USPS Priority Mail Services - then you would be breaking the law. New FREE Boxes MUST be used only for Mail. Boxes that are Purchased or Used should be OK."

Map Placemat Decoupage Idea

By: Claire Armstrong from pillarboxblue.com
Map Placemat Decoupage Idea
Map Placemat Decoupage Idea
This image courtesy of pillarboxblue.com

In the Designer's Words: "Revamp tired old table mats, (or make new ones with cork tiles), with maps of your favourite cities. Not only do these maps look fantastic but they really spark conversation round the dinner table as everyone reminisces about about trips to the city. This is a very easy decoupage craft, that costs very little to make. You can use maps that you may have collected from your travels or download free ones from the internet. These maps would also make a fantastic personalised gift."

Estimated Cost$11-$20

Time to CompleteIn an evening

Primary TechniqueDIY Craft

Beginner

Project TypeMake a Project

Materials List

  • Old table mats or cork tiles
  • Maps - There are links on my blog to download free ones.
  • Decoupage Glue
  • Waterproof/Heat resistant varnish

Instructions

  1. Prime your maps with a 50/50 glue water solution.

  2. Cut your map to size

  3. Apply glue to map and mat.

  4. Place map on top of mat carefully using a ruler or rolling pin to squeeze out any bubbles.

  5. Once dry, coat with 2 to 3 layers of varnish leaving to dry between each coat.

NotesI collect the free tourist maps from all the cities I visit and these are perfect for this. However there are some fantastic vintage ones on the internet you can download for free (links on my blog). They do look awesome and are a great for memories. I used maps of London, Paris, Barcelona, Stockholm and Budapest.

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This looks fun! Making some for my daughter's birthday party!

What a great idea! I am thinking of making them from world maps and using them for my grandkids. What better way to learn about geography and the world? I need a refresher course myself since many countries have been renamed since I was in school. Eat and leArn with grandma.

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