Do you have old maps lying around that you don't know what to do with? Perhaps you have a friend with a wanderlust that won't quit, or a spouse who keeps maps as mementos of epic trips. Maps can have a lot of character, so put your old ones to new uses with this fun craft or gift idea.
Things You'll Need
- A map that you don't mind cutting up.
Roll of 18 inch wide Clear Contact Paper
Roll of heavy, clear tape.
Two pieces of heavy, pressed cardboard (4x10 approximately)
Glue Gun (optional)
Sewing Machine (optional)
- Laminate as much of your map as you can with the clear contact paper. Laminate both sides. It is easiest to peel up only a thin (2 inch, 5cm) strip of the contact paper backing at a time and smooth it onto the map as you go. Avoid wrinkles and bubbles, smoothing from the middle to the edges and in the direction you're rolling. You may also want to iron wrinkles out of the map with a cool iron before you begin this step.
- Remove any areas of the map that are not laminated. This should leave you with a 12 or 18 inch (30-45cm) wide strip of laminated map depending on your roll width.
- Cut the laminated map strip into two long strips. Make the first three inches (75mm) wide (for the handles) and the second 9 to 16 inches (225 to 400mm) wide (for the sides and flap).
- Fold the wide map strip so that one end is approximately 6 inches (150mm) longer than the other. This longer strip will become your purse closure flap. Temporarily tape them into position with clear tape or masking tape.
- Fold the long sides in approximately 3 inches (75mm) each. This will form the ends of your purse.
- Pinch the corners into a flat miter to form the sides. Take care that your pinches/miters are evenly sized.
- Tape the side edges together.
- Tape down the miters on the inside of the purse.
- Measure, cut and place a piece of cardboardin the bottom of your purse and tape the mitered corners flat over its ends to hold it in place. If you used a sewing machine, turn the purse inside out to hide your seams.
- Measure the rectangle formed by your miters (the “bottom” of the purse”) and cut a piece of pressed cardboard to match.
- Cover the cardboard rectangle in laminated map.
- Sew your handle strips.
- Fold the remaining 4-inch (100mm) strip of laminated map. For those who sew, fold it as bias tape is folded. Others, fold in the two raw edges about half an inch each side. Then fold the whole thing in half again so that your first folds match up and your raw edges are hidden on the inside of the fold.
- Tape the handle to your map-covered rectangle.
- Sew or glue the handle to the ends of your map purse. Be sure to attach it securely enough to withstand the weight of whatever you will carry.
- Slide the cardboard rectangle into the bottom of the purse and secure it there with glue. This helps the purse hold its shape as well as securing the purse handle.
- Fold your 6- to 8-inch flap over the front of your purse opening.
- Mark the area that overlaps on the sides and miter cut the corner.
- Fold the edges of your flap so that they will line up with the “body” of the purse with little overlap.
- Sew or tape the edges down and trim off any excess.
- Place your Velcro tab in the center of the flap and sew or glue it into place.
- Mark where the flap Velcro lies when the purse is closed. Place the corresponding Velcro tab on the mark and glue or sew it into place.
- As a cute accessory, glue a Hot Wheels car (or similar) to the center of the front flap.
- This project can be either sewn or taped. Taping is easier and wears approximately the same.
- If you don't want a full purse in this style, consider doing a miniature one as a make-up or toiletries bag. Just make sure it closes securely if you're going to put very small items in it.
- Use appropriate care with scissors and hot glue gun.
- Paper dulls needles very quickly.