Upcycled Map Magnetic Board & Pins

How to Upcycle an Old Magnetic Board with Maps

I love maps! Stick a map on something and all of a sudden it becomes much more attractive and hipper. For example, my brilliant vintage map suitcase.
If you use the right map you can also add meaning to an object by personalising it with maps of your favourite places. I did this with my personalised map chairs.
My son had this old plain Ikea magnetic pin board in his room and I decided that it needed a bit of map magic. I decoupaged it with some map wrapping paper and now it’s a much more interesting map magnetic board.
When he finishes school in the summer my son wants to go interrailing around Europe. With a map magnetic board in his room, he can plan his trip whilst daydreaming. To add a bit more fun to the board I made some travel themed magnetic pins to compliment it.
This map magnetic board would look great in any home office, or teenagers bedroom. It would be a great gift for people like my son with wanderlust!
How to make an awesome map magnetic board by simply decoupaging map wrapping paper to an old magnetic board.  Also includes tutorial for map themed travel pins.
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What you need to make a map magnetic board and pins

  • Magnetic notice board. My board was a simple steel board.
  • Europe Map Wrapping paper
  • Mod Podge & sealer
  • Rolling pin & Scissors
    How to make an awesome map magnetic board

    Upcycled Map Magnetic Board


    For the Magnetic pins

  • Ink jet shrink film paper
  • Self adhesive coin magnets
  • Images, create your own or download mine for free

    How to make a Map Magnetic board and pins


  • First to ensure that my map would stick to the board I keyed it, by covering the front of the board in dilute Mod Podge (50/50) and leaving to dry.
  • Map magnetic board preparation

  • Next I applied a thin layer of Mod Podge glue to the board and the wrong side of my map and carefully lay my map over the top of the board. To help eliminate air bubbles, I used both a ruler and a rolling pin to gently squeeze them out.
    How to make a map magnetic pin board

  • The map wrapping paper was wrapped round the sides of the board and the excess trimmed away. To protect the map, apply a coat of Mod Podge glue or varnish to the top of the map.
    Map Magnetic board
    Map Magnetic Pin Board and travel pins

    How to Make the Travel Pins

    To give my map magnetic pin board even more of a travel theme I made some special magenetic pins. To use my own travel themed hand drawn images download them here..
    Images for magnetic travel themed pins

    As well as my own drawings, I found some fantastic graphics of vintage airline tags from a great graphics blog Graphicdefiner. I emailed Jonathan at Graphicdefiner and he gave me permission to use these tags.
    Map Magnetic pin board and travel themed pins

      To make your pins, print your chosen images onto your shrink plastic (bearing in mind the images shrink to about 1/3). Cut out the images and place on a baking tray.
      Shrink your images according to the instructions that come with your shrink plastic. I did mine in a 150c oven. Don’t get alarmed as the plastic shrinks it will curl but then uncurl.
      Once your picture has shrunk and cool just stick one of your self adhesive magnets on the back to create a magnetic pin.

    How to make magnetic travel pins for map magnetic pin board
    Upcycled map magnetic pin board and shrink plastic pins

    Upcycled Mpa magnetic board and shrink plastic magnetic travel pins
    If you like me and love to decoupage with maps check out my other popular map crafts:
    Vintage Map Suitcase
    Map Table Mats with City Maps
    Map Heart Ornament
    Ikea Lamp Hack With Maps

    42 Responses

    1. […] of crafting with shrink plastic. I have used it recently to make some fun luggage tag pins for a travel-themed map magnetic board. And I decided to use the stuff to make some colourful heart shapes for these Valentine’s […]


    3. […] If you follow my blog you will know I do this alot. For example my personalised map chairs, map magnetic board and vintage map suitcase, and many more. I admit it I have a bit of a map habit, but once you start […]

    4. […] around the house just in time for Christmas.   If you like this you might also like my upcycled map magnetic board and travel pins.   amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0"; amzn_assoc_search_bar = "true"; amzn_assoc_tracking_id = […]

    5. […] Get the full tutorial here: Upcycled Map Magnetic Board & Pins at Pillar Box Blue […]

    6. This is so much fun Claire and a great opportunity for a geography lesson. Thanks for joining us again this week at Celebrate Your Story and I hope your weekend is off to a great start.

    7. […] Upcycled Map Magnetic Board from Pillar Box Blue […]

    8. Great way to upcycle. Thank you for linking up at Funtastic Friday!

    9. What a fabulous idea, Claire!! I love the little pins you made!! Just adorable! Thank you so much for sharing your Upcycled map magnetic board at #WasteNotWednesday! Look forward to seeing what you have up your sleeve for this week 🙂

    10. […] Map Magnetic Pin Board – Pillar Box Blue […]

    11. […] This Map Pin Board via Pillar Box Blue is awesome – especially with the adorable DIY magnetic pins! […]

    12. What an absolutely fantastic idea but then you add in the graphics for the magnets to take this project totally over the top. Thank so much for sharing at Vintage Charm and I hope to see you back again this week.

    13. The map and travel pins go so well together. I love the look you have created. Thanks for sharing your post with us at Creatively Crafty #CCBG

    14. Hi Claire! What an adorable magnetic board. I never knew you could buy a sheet of wrapping paper that was a map. Very cool! Thanks for sharing and linking up at DI & DI 🙂

      • Thank you ! You can get all sorts of maps wrapping paper, cities countries and world.

    15. I absolutely LOVE this! I love maps too and have them all over my home (I posted my own DIY map gallery wall recently on http://www.roost-blog.com too) but as yet I don’t have one for my new home office. I think I am going to have to make one of these! 🙂

      • Thank you so much ! I love your map gallery wall it looks awesome.

    16. Fabulous Claire, and love those magnets too! I’ve got some of those magnet boards too, and we really need a world map somewhere, so this is perfect! thanks for sharing on craft schooling Sunday!

    17. I was already sold on the project but then you added shrinky dinks to the mix and now I’m in love! Your son will have a blast traveling Europe by rail. As you probably know, the trains are (mostly) modern, fast and the scenery is amazing. Thanks for sharing with us at Creatively Crafty #ccbg 🙂

      • Thank you ! Shrinks dinks are such fun ! Yes he’s started planning his trip already and keeps talking about it. It’s nice to have something to look forward to.

    18. What an amazing idea! I love the little pins you made, too – so creative!

    19. What a fun idea!! Would be perfect to showcase the places you’ve visited, I love it! Thank you for sharing with us at the #HomeMattersParty

      • Thank you ! My other son has one of these boards too so will be upcycling with some other maps.

    20. Love the idea behind this craft project! I’m inspired by it since I have constant wanderlust and often wonder what I’d do with leftover tags or things from my travels.

      • Thanks ! I love to collect maps and tags from my travels so am always looking for things to do with them. It’s nice to have some visual reminders.

    21. What a cute map project. I adore the pins. Thank you so very much for sharing this wonderful post at Thoughts of Home on Thursday.

      • Thank you ! I love the pins too especially the vintage airline tags.

    22. Thanks for sharing at TOHOT. I just love your magnet board.

    23. SUCH a cute idea! And the possibilities are really endless! So great! Thanks for sharing!

      • Thank you ! I’ve rediscovered my childhood love of shrinks dinks.

    24. I love this magnet board! It looks like it is also doubling as a dream board as your son plans his future trip. Thanks for sharing!

    25. this is such a creative way to use a map. Not only is it stylish, but it promotes easy, continual learning.
      Great job! Stopping by from Fantastic Friday Link Party 🙂

    26. This is such a fun idea. It can also be a great way to teach geography to older kids.

    27. This is fun!! The map idea is great to start with but when you add those magnetic pins it’s just over the top. Sharing on Facebook.

      Happy Thoughts of Home. 🙂

    28. I am over the moon with this idea! Love it and sharing it too.
      Great to have you join us at TOHOT!

    29. This board is stunning! I’m pinning it for my son’s travel themed room! thanks for sharing!

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