Sometimes you just need a little direction.

Get in touch with your inner kid by you.

Many, many months ago I signed up for the Sketchbook Project at Art House Coop.  The due date for them was July 31st, and I failed to get it done.  All I managed was the cover and one page.  The theme was “How to Save the World”.  The idea that I had great plans for, was to incorporate old maps in the project.  And on each page I was going to list some small act that one individual could do with the idea that if you multiply that one person and one act by millions of people we can save the world. 

Anyway that’s just background info.  What I’m really getting to is my map and globe obsession.  I’ve been really excited to come across some great projects using old maps.  And just yesterday I got a fab, handwritten letter in the mail from Lea, and the envelope and stationery were old maps!  The moleskin cover is the one I did for the Sketchbook Project.  I used maps from a 1971 World Book Atlas.

Things to do with old maps by you.

And you may have seen Patricia’s papercut made from a map along with her brilliant post about the artist Claire Brewster.  Patricia’s papercut is titled ‘Iowa Flood Dragon.’

Iowa Flood Dragon by ZenCrafter.


dlk designs makes charm bracelets and pendant necklaces using maps.

Your Life Charm Bracelet by dlk designs.

Pink Bath Tub has some cool prints made on maps.

sellwood + moreland by pinkbathtub.

And here are some goodies from the brilliant Bombus Designs.

Bombus Designs Love by you.

Now if you have made it all the way to the end I have two more things to tell you.  First there is a handstitched competition going on here.  And I’ve come up with a swap or show and tell idea if anyone is interested………The title of would be  “The Illuminated Phrase”.   Here’s the idea, you’re reading a book and you come across an interesting string of words, a phrase, or a description that sticks with you.  Or maybe you have phrases or random words tucked away in a little notebook.  Now you take that phrase or words and you illuminate them in whatever medium you want – paper, printing, embroidery, sewing, photo collage – the list is endless.  Mr. Webster defines the word illuminate this way:  2.  a) to make clear; explain; elucidate  b) to inform; instruct; enlighten  3.  to make illustrious, glorious, or famous   5.  to decorate….with designs, tracings, etc……..   I’ve edited a little.  If anyone is interested let me know.  (And this idea really kind of originated with Melinda  aka: mypurplecrayon.)   I’m thinking sign ups would probably start September 1st  and the project would be due in about 6 weeks.  Also, please let me know if you would prefer a swap or just a show and tell.  After I get some feedback I’ll go from there.

11 Comments Add yours

  1. ellen kelley says:

    Oh, my…I am thinking about this, but I don’t know if I could pull it off.
    If I chicken out, I will certainly enjoy what others do, have to say, and how they express themselves.
    What a challenge!

  2. Rachel says:

    The Illuminated Phrase ideas sounds wonderful! I would love to participate.

  3. Anna Y says:

    Such a fab idea. And love those maps. I have always cut up old maps for origami paper in class….

  4. mayaluna says:

    This sounds very enticing, if not intimidating! I’m going to leap…please count me in. I haven’t participated in a swap, yet…but I’m game for either of the two options. I adore this map post, Jackie… it was wonderful to see some familiar images and some totally new ones, thanks!

  5. Batspit says:

    I’m in. But I may need like 8 weeks?

  6. andrea says:

    love the map stuff! so creative…

  7. love the map finds!!!

    yes, i would love to illuminate a phrase. now if only i could remember ones that hit me hard! it’ll be a good challenge to go thru my “life-changing” books over the labor day weekend and hunt for something amazing.

  8. Patricia says:

    Wow!! Thanks for including my dragon in such a fantastic post. I just wish I had thought of the idea first! Doh!

    I would love to participate in the Illuminated Phrase project. The Altoids tin project is in fact just that, so your idea couldn’t come at a better time. And I need a kick in the butt to get the painted tin to the next stage.

  9. robyn says:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog, Jackie! I’m looking forward to having a look around yours as well. 🙂

  10. threesneakybugs says:

    I adore maps. What great finds.

    I won’t comment on the swap/show and tell idea since I still haven’t sent you a bracelet. Well, ok, I’ll comment – it’s a great idea! But that’s all I’m saying.

  11. Diana says:

    The Iowa Flood Dragon print is really nice.

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