Play Map to Taco Bell
Huck has recently gotten very interested in maps. Again, this is a Wii inspired obsession. We play Animal Crossing (affiliate link) with my family over WiFi quite a bit, and one of the options the game has is to view a map of our town and maps of the towns we visit. He enjoys looking at the maps and talking about the different buildings and landmarks on them. He has been wanting me to draw maps for him, and he asks to incorporate elements from Animal Crossing, Super Mario Brothers and from our real life (!!!). One element he always wants on the map is Taco Bell. We don’t even eat at Taco Bell very often, and our Taco Bell isn’t particularly kid-friendly or fun, but for some reason he always wants me to draw him a map to Taco Bell!
Since he has been into the map thing so much, I wanted to make him a cool play map out of fabric. I took a piece of unbleached cotton and did some color washes with diluted fabric paints for the land and sea. I did a zig-zag stitch in gold thread around the edge, but otherwise left it raw with the hopes that it will fray naturally. I also added some of the Jacquard Lumiere (affiliate link) metallic fabric paint to give it a little bit of a shimmer. When the paint dried, I used several of my sewing machine’s embroidery stitches to outline the edges and make trees, grass and water. Then, I created little applique elements for the buildings. I used Lite Steam-a-Seam 2 on the backs of several scraps of fabrics which I drew on with my trusty Crayola fabric markers to make landmarks and such. I then cut out the elements and ironed them onto my map. The last step was to label everything, which I did by first printing out the names in a fancy calligraphy font and then I used a lightbox to trace the words onto the map. I wish I had gotten a little fancier with “The Boundless Sea” but otherwise I think it came out very nicely. I still may add a compass rose to the top corner, but maybe not.
I loved this project and was so excited about the way it came out. Afterwards I thought of a bunch of ideas for more play maps, and different ways to make them, and I have three more maps with the base paint washes drying right now!