Painted Map DIY Tutorial

 Hi friends!  First-a HUGE thank-you to those of you who took the time to complete the survey I posted a day or two ago.  I have really taken your words and thoughts into consideration and have many exciting things planned for The Rosy Life in the upcoming months!  One thing I noticed was a request for more DIY tutorials, which I would love to share more of. 
So-today I want to show you an easy way to customize a map, whether it be local or global!  This is easy to do, and would make such a unique gift as well.  The possibilities are endless!
 First, you will need to find/buy an old map!  I bet if you put the word out you could even score some old maps for free.  This map belonged to my dear father-in-law, and was going to be thrown away.  (hint: If people know you love to take on projects you'd be surprised at the free items that come your way).  My apologies for the darker than normal photos.  My crafting time is either during nap time, or in the evenings, which doesn't always allow for the best lighting!
 1.) Although I didn't mind that the map looked old (and actually preferred it that way) I didn't care for the edges looking torn.  So my first step was to use double-sided tape around the perimeter of the map in the places where it needed to be repaired. 
 2.)  Step 2 was to type the word(s) I wanted on the map in a blank Word document.  As you can see, I typed the same word in various fonts to figure out which one I liked the best.  Since I knew I was going to be using my letters as a stencil I decided to go with a thicker font-making it easier to cut around and then eventually, paint. 
 3.)  Next I printed out the letters needed to spell "Joy to the World" and then cut each letter out individually. 
 4.)  After all the letters were cut I then placed them on the map and arranged them in a way that looked pleasing to me.  You will notice some of the letters are missing and that is because I didn't want to print repeat letters.  So, only one "O" and "T" were needed, leaving a few gaps in the arrangement.
 5.)  Once I was pleased with the spacing and arrangement of the letters I then traced around each one with a pen.
 6.)  Now for the fun part-COLOR!  After each letter had been traced around I started to fill in each one with paint.  I had already picked 4 coordinating paints and decided where to put each color based on the background color of the map underneath.  For example, for the word "JOY" I decided to use a darker color of paint so that the word could easily be read over the pink background color of the United States.  The brushes I used are a cheap pack of 25 or 30 brushes from the checkout stand at Hobby Lobby.  I like to use coffee filters stacked several high for the paint, and then throw the brush and filter away when I'm done.  It makes for cheap, easy clean-up.
 7.)  I found it was easier to fill in the letters with paint if I traced around the outside of each letter first.  Then I could easily fill in the middle with color! 
8.)  Here is the finished product!  The paint I used are the small tubes found on the craft aisle at Joann's.  They cost less than a dollar each and they have a huge variety of colors to choose from!  
I am so pleased with how this map turned out and hope that you'll let your imagination run wild with a Painted Map project of your own!
In a later post-I can't wait to show you what I plan on doing with this map in my home.
Stay tuned!