Trying to stage a home that has seven children and two exhausted parents living in it is not a simple task! My bedroom must have been the worst spot in our house, as we always just tossed stuff in there and never took the time to make it into the serene calming place I had dreamed of.
We knew that trying to sell the house with a calming and relaxing master bedroom would be much easier, so we went about getting it ready. Everything I read told me that I had to depersonalize my space, so other people could imagine themselves living in it. So the first thing in my mind was that I had to take down the wedding photos and replace them with art that was simple yet unique. I didn’t know exactly what I wanted until I saw a world map at IKEA that looked like it was on wood.
I really liked it, but didn’t love the price tag, and it was just a print. After seeing it I realized I really wanted it to be actually on wood. Maybe a bit brighter, but still simple.
I decided to try to create something similar to the feel of the map, but with my own unique vibe to it. You see the finished product above our bed in the “after” photo above, but here is the tutorial on how I did it!
To start you either need to make or find a wooden pallet/shelf. I happened to have an ikea gorm shelving unit in the basement that I had an extra shelf to. This was completely unfinished so I didn’t have to prep the wood with anything.
I used a cherry wood colour stain and applied it with a paper towel.
After the first coat, it was nicely covered. But I applied a second coat after the first coat felt dry to the touch. I let the wood dry overnight.
Next comes the tricky part. Mostly because I didn’t remember to take a photo of it! The easiest way to make your wood look distressed is to use Vaseline. I smeared vaseline on the edges of the wood (or anywhere else I wanted the cream paint to not stick). I didn’t glob it on, but also didn’t skimp on this part. Then I used some cheap dollar store cream acrylic paint and painted right over top of the stain and the vaseline.
I let the paint dry slightly, so it wasn’t wet to the touch. Then took another paper towel and gently wiped away the paint where the vaseline had been put on. It comes off very easily and works so well!
The next step is to measure your wood so you know how big to make the print out of the map. Mine measured about 2′ x 2.5′. I found a map silhouette that I liked and enlarged it so that the dimensions would match the shelf dimensions. I printed off the map and pieced it together, taping it so that it was properly set up.
The next part is the most time consuming. Using small scissors, cut all the continents out carefully, to make a stencil for your paint. I really was shocked by how many tiny islands Canada has, and this felt like it took forever (really though it probably took about 15 minutes even with a hand cramp break).
Now comes the fun part! Using a warm brown (also a cheap dollar store acrylic paint) and a sponge brush, I sponged on brown paint into my stencil. This was really a lot of fun!
You can add as many layers of paint as you want, or as little as you want! Its really however you like it! I did some areas darker than others, and in retrospect it would have been cool to do that in mountain range areas!
I let it dry for about an hour, and then just peeled off the stencil. I was so excited with how well it turned out!
We hung it up with a single screw into a stud above the bed and I am thrilled with how easy and perfect it was for the space!
The shelf was upcycled, the stain was in the basement from a previous work project, the two bottles of acrylic paint came to $2 and the sponge brush was 50 cents! So the total out of pocket cost was $3.50. I was really happy, and this was my very first painting project like this! I would love to see if anyone else puts their own spin onto this project!