Home » You Can Accomplish This Before Your Effing Head Explodes: “Postcard” Wall Art

You Can Accomplish This Before Your Effing Head Explodes: “Postcard” Wall Art

As you are aware, I’m engaging in some serious front-line trench warfare with our house.

It’s not the house’s fault.  A series of events including an unwanted guest (basement mold) a few years ago, and the addition of one toddler plus another on the way has made our previous living arrangements less than ideal these days.

So. . .improving we are a-doing. . .

And one of my biggest aesthetic challenges involves our walls.  Not the paint color so much as their adornment.  I happen to like a mish-mash of interesting art and photos, etc on walls.  Hung salon style, floor to ceiling. . .the more eclectic the better.  I’ve tried to clean up my act.  Tone it down.  Simplify.  I really have.  But I ALWAYS go back to hanging more shit on a wall than TGI Fridays.

It makes me happy.

What wasn’t making me happy was the destruction the toddler was exacting on all those easily accessible frames and wall hangings.

He was yanking stuff off the walls left and right.

I had to capitulate.  For his own safety.

So I ripped EVERYTHING off nearly every wall.

And we’ve been living with bare walls which resemble swiss cheese for a couple of months now.

But it’s bringing me down.

So now that I have a plan for where the new kid on the block will be bunking.  And a basement that is nearly completely reassembled (FINALLY after 2 years!!), I’m thinking about kid friendly wall art.  Kid friendly meaning it’s cheap, not precious, practically indestructible and won’t harm them if they yank it off the wall. . .

Mac currently has zero access to the basement.  And it’s an area that when completed, he will visit only under strict supervision.  So I decided we could probably get away with putting some of our larger Baltimore/Maryland prints and stuff in a salon-style display on one wall.

After hanging what we had, I was left with one large empty spot.  And I couldn’t see filling that spot with small snap shots. . .and I also didn’t want to blow any of our re-make budget on purchasing a print and frame.

While I was organizing some other stuff, I found an older Maryland road map.  (The kind they give away free at visitor’s centers and the like.)

I also had some canvases a friend gave me after she decided painting wasn’t the hobby for her.  She decided her thing was baking.  And she definitely found her passion.  I pimp her awesome cupcakes ALL. THE. TIME. on Twitter because YUM.  Check her out here:  AimeeCayks.

One of her canvases was already painted black.  Black all over.  And that’s a pretty difficult thing to paint over, so it had been languishing in a dusty stack of “I’m not sure what to do with this” stuff.

Road Map, meet canvas.  Canvas, meet empty spot on the wall.  

This is quick and easy.  You need minimal materials and absolutely zero artistic talent. . .

1.  Cover the canvas in a coat of Modge Podge (or some watered-down regular old white school glue).

2.  Adhere the road map to the canvas.  Make sure you have the most interesting parts of the map properly aligned before smoothing everything out.  You probably won’t get out all the creases if you are using a pre-folded map but I kinda’ like the weathered look of it.

3.  Allow the adhesive to dry thoroughly.  Trim the map carefully so its edges are flush with the canvas edges.  (I used an Exacto Knife but sharp scissors and a careful hand will also work).

4.  Take a charcoal pencil and lightly trace out your phrase or post card “slogan” onto the map.  (You could use a No. 2 pencil; however, I find a charcoal pencil disappears better under the paint and doesn’t “scratch” the surface of the paper/canvas like a  regular pencil might.)

5.  Once you are pleased with your slogan placement, use a couple of fine tipped brushes to paint the slogan.  (I used a heavy-bodied acrylic paint straight out of the tube because I find I have better control with a heavy body paint and I like the texture.  You could use any acrylic paint you are comfortable with. . .Or probably even a medium-tipped good quality marker.)

6.  Allow the paint to dry, touching up as needed.

Before the glossy top-coats. . .

Before the glossy top-coats. . .

7.  When everything was dry, I gave the entire canvas two coats of glossy modge-podge so it had the shiny appearance of a post card.

8.  Let it dry.  Hang it on the wall.  Wait for toddler to find it.

Everything wall

A couple of ideas and notes:

1.  This might make a fun Father’s Day project to do with older children.  They can definitely help with the glue and top-coats.  And it would probably look darling to have them write out the words in their own hand-writing.  As a bonus, you could add small photos from trips you took and places you visited to make the item more personal.

2.  I used a fairly large canvas but any smaller scale canvas would work too.  You might consider putting the entire map across several canvases so they can hand on the wall as a grouping.

3.  The saying I used was “Everything here is Simply Wonderful.”  (Which I thought was kinda’ cheeky, given the fact that our house is a circus most of the time).  I read that somewhere.  I know I saw it on some wall art in an online photo.  Unfortunately, I cannot for the life of me find the image.  I do NOT believe that particular image/art included the saying scribbled on top of a map.  However, if you know the image I’m referring to, please let me know and I’ll give proper credit.

4.  If you aren’t sure what to write on your image, you could seek out old post cards for some cute ideas.

5.  Don’t worry about your hand-writing.  It’s not supposed to be perfect.  If you really feel paralyzed by scribbling on top of the map, you could use a stencil or some sort and ruler to get the letters exactly how you want them.

6.  I used a thicker brush for the “bigger” words and a very small liner brush for the “smaller” words.



7.  This could also be a cute way to preserve summer memories for your family.  You can collect ticket stubs and photos and other ephemera from your summer adventures and arrange them on canvases.  How fun would these look all collected on a wall in a family room?  If you used flat canvas panels, they would also take up less storage space than boxes of memorabilia.  Again, this could be an excellent, easy and inexpensive end-of-summer project for children.  (Seek out sales on canvases at Jo-Anns or Michaels. . . or use one of their ubiquitous coupons for extra savings).

Let me know if you this project.  I’d love to see your work!  The project is super fast. . .the longest part is waiting for the paint and adhesive to dry.

PS Sorry for the poor pics.  I swore I’d use the good camera.  But my cell phone was handy.  Wahmp, wahmp, wah.

Everything wall 2



2 Responses to “You Can Accomplish This Before Your Effing Head Explodes: “Postcard” Wall Art”

  1. Meghan says:

    I love it!!!! What a great idea and so colorful!