DIY Pinboard World Map

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A DIY pinboard map to showcase the places you’ve been!

DIY Pinboard World Map - With just a few inexpensive items, you can make your own push pin map!

We recently decided to incorporate a travel theme to our home because traveling is a common love between the two of us.  I had been trying to think of a related decoration to hang over our piano and wanted a framed pinboard map of the places we’ve been.  After a quick Google search, I found that this type of framed map is just way too expensive to buy (starting in the $200 range)!

DIY Pinboard Map

So Ben and I set out to make our own.  We already had a large foam insulation board in the garage that he cut down to size and I found a cheap vintage looking world map poster on Amazon.  Ben came up with how to do it (after my failed attempt primarily using mod podge).  We used spray adhesive to the back of the poster, then quickly and carefully stuck it to the insulation board.  Then, using inspiration from this post, we made a trip to Hobby Lobby to purchase our frame.

Here’s how we did it and how much it cost:

DIY Pinboard Map

24- x 36-inch World Map Poster ( – $5 including shipping
Foam Insulation Board (The Home Depot) – $10 for 4′ x 8′ sheet, but we already had this on hand
24- x 36-inch Frame (Hobby Lobby) – $20 on sale
Krylon 7777 Super Quick Grip Spray Adhesive (Michael’s) – $6 with 40% off coupon
OPTIONAL: Mod Podge Matte Finish (Hobby Lobby) – $6 with 40% coupon
Map Pins (Office Max) – $3.00

Total Cost:
$50.00 (or less, if not using Mod Podge or you already have supplies on hand)

DIY Pinboard Map - less than $501) Spray the back side of the poster map and the front side of the insulation board with an even layer of the adhesive spray.

DIY World Map Pinboard2) Working quickly, carefully place the poster over top the insulation board (the sticky side).  We didn’t cut the insulation board to the exact size until after we stuck the poster map to it.  In other words, the insulation board was about 1 inch larger on each side in order to give us room for error, then Ben cut it to the size of the poster once it was glued on.

DIY Pinboard World Map3) Use a credit card to smooth down the poster map onto the insulation board and get rid of bubbles.  Note: You will have to embrace some bubbling.  Unless you are a super amazing bubble blaster, it is impossible to not have bubbles.  If bubbles do not appear now, they probably will later…  Let dry for at least 1 hour.  After this step, I also added a thin layer of matte finish Mod Podge to take out the glossiness of the poster for a more vintage/worn look.  The Mod Podge is not required.

DIY Pinboard World Map4) Tape the map to the back of the frame.  (There are other ways to frame your map, but we like to be ghetto and do it the quickest way possible…)  😉  It’s been holding up just fine!

DIY Pinboard Map5) Nail in your hook.  (Look at my man’s sexy work hands!  Rawrrr!)

DIY Pinboard World Map6) You’re done! Hang that puppy up and start pinning!

We use our map to pin the places we’ve been together as a couple (red), as a family (white), and then where we have friends and family ministering so we can remember to pray for them (black).  We want to use this map to teach our children to pray for those serving God around the world, while learning a bit of geography.

DIY Pinboard Map

Plus, it adds nice a rustic decor to our living room, don’t you think?

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  1. Angie Landon says:

    Very cool

  2. We made a “newlywed map” after we got married for the same reasons. We put pins in any place we’ve been since we started dating. It’s been fun to add new pins as the years go by.

  3. I love it! I especially like trimming the foam board down to size AFTER the map is glued on…I wouldn’t have thought of that and would have probably ended up very frustrated 🙂

  4. Um, I LOVE THIS!!!! Maybe I can convince Addison to do this when he’s not busy with seminary (May 2015??!!)

  5. Sue Gladd says:

    Fabulous idea!!!

  6. Brilliant! Love the commentary too :)! Thanks for sharing!

  7. AWESOME! Thanks for the amazon link, it’s the cheapest place I’ve found a cool map like that! Planning to give this as a graduation gift to travel-lovers and gonna make one for our living room too!

  8. I love your map. Have you heard of “Flat Stanley”? The first grade at our school uses a huge map in the hall to keep track of him. It’s funny how maps are nothing until you use them to teach your kids where you are and where you’ve been.

  9. Great idea!! Thank you for sharing this. I’m hoping to attempt to recreate it as a gift. Do you know how thick the foam board you used was?

    Thanks again!! xxx

  10. I LOVE THIS!!! I am going to make my husband one for our 1st anniversary and am so excited! The frame is phenomenal! I really hope Hobby Lobby still has it! EEEK! Wish me luck!!

  11. Could you specify the name of the frame you used from Hobby Lobby? It looks really good but I am having trouble finding it. Thanks.

    • Nikki Gladd says:

      Hi Brad. I’m sorry, I don’t know the exact name of it. It is one of their normal frames they carry in their custom framing aisle. I guess it’s possible they do not carry it anymore, but I’d be surprised because it’s a pretty popular one. Maybe they were out of stock the day you went in? Make sure you’re looking in custom framing and not in normal picture frames aisle. Hope this helps!

  12. What is the name of the Hobby Lobby frame?

  13. Here’s a tip that worked for me: spray the adhesive on the board, not the map, that way the map doesn’t get so wrinkled. I got repositionable adhesive and was able to lift up a corner that got accidentally tucked under. Also smooth from the center outwards.

  14. Hi,

    I am trying to find out the difference between the foam board and the foam insulation board. Is there much difference in using either?

  15. Since the foam board is quite thick, how did you cut it down? Do regular scissors work? Thanks!

  16. Jennifer says:

    I’m soooo glad that I came across this post. I’ve been looking to buy one of these for my boyfriend, but I agree, they were too expensive. I had thought of making my own as I am very crafty was I was a bit intimidated by how much time it might take. Thank you for sharing!

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