Hanging Chalkboard US Map – Playroom Wall Art Inspired by Restoration Hardware

Hanging Chalkboard US Map – Playroom Wall Art Inspired by Restoration Hardware

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend. I have one last piece of wall art to show today as part of my little guys playful learning room makeover.
As I have shared before, my goal for the wall art in this particular room was finding pieces that were not distracting and as neutral as possible – but still filled the room with a little personality and style.
 I really wanted to add a map of some sort to the room and last year saved a fun unique military map from Restoration Hardware in my inspiration file. I really liked how the map was outlined and unlabeled which I thought would be perfect for learning and recognizing the individual states.
Though the map is no longer available I was able to re-create this inspired hanging chalkboard map version for just under $8 {which in the end was a little better on the budget that the original – retailing just over $600}.
I was lucky enough to have an old United States canvas we had hanging in my little guys old room to use as a guideline for the states. The canvas was picked up a couple years ago and is a fun take on the States – not exactly ‘map accurate’. Since the chalkboard map is going to be used more for wall decoration than actual educational purposes that didn’t really bother me – however there are plenty of maps online that can be downloaded, enlarged and used as template – like these from Free US and World Maps.
Each individual state was traced onto a blank transparency and cut out. The transparency film is used for overhead projectors and can be found at any office supply store.
Once all of the states were cut out, they were ready to be transferred onto the chalkboard canvas. I found the chalkboard canvas right at my local Joanne Fabric and Craft Store for just $4.99 a yard – It’s actually called Blackboard Fabric and can also be ordered online. The fabric is thick and can be used just like a chalkboard. I only used one yard for a finished canvas size of 27 X 36.
The state templates were traced onto the chalkboard canvas with a ball point pen.
Then over the course of a couple nights, I used acrylic paint to go over all the outlines by hand, using a fine tip paint brush.
Painter’s Tape was then placed along the edges and filled in with acrylic paint to create the border.
And I used my Silhouette to create a vinyl template for the United States – which was simply filled in with acrylic paint.
To create the retractable look of the original, two 1/2 inch wooden dowels were picked up from my local Home Depot and stained.
The dowels were then attached to the top and bottom of the chalkboard canvas with a finishing nails – along with a sawtooth picture hanger for hanging.
My little guy is already enjoying pointing out some of the states he already has memorized from several of the tabletop maps and puzzles we already have.
Since the canvas is mainly just decorative right now, I did not prime the canvas – though it can be written on with chalk and wiped right off just like a regular chalkboard.
Although this project was a bit time consuming, the $8 price tag makes it worthwhile for a larger piece of custom art work that is not only fun, but educational as well – and I just love the understated industrial look.
Hope you have a wonderful week – enjoy.


  1. Phenomenal! Wow, it is stunning and would look wonderful in any room. What a lucky boy and a talented mum.

  2. That is just so cool. I don’t know if I would have the patience to keep my line painting as perfect as yours was. Great job!

  3. That looks fabulous! Great job, well worth the time 🙂
    Tami @ Curb Alert!

  4. This is great! What a wonderful idea.

  5. Great idea! I love how that turned out! You’re so talented!

  6. great idea! I could do one of Australia, we have a lot less states to fill in too!

  7. This looks amazing, Stephanie! You can see how much love and careful thought went into creating it. Thank you for sharing your lovely project!

  8. Stephanie, this is incredible! I do believe I am going to make a larger one for our room and then mark all the places we have lived as a family as well as my childhood homes. Thanks for the inspiration!! And I have a coupon for Jo-Ann’s right now!!

  9. Brilliant! I have a semi-destroyed classroom map already and I can’t bring myself to either cut it up or dispose of it, but your creation has given me some inspiration…maybe paint it with chalk paint?? Beautifully done.

  10. I love this project! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Really, really nice Stephanie Lynn! I love it!

  12. I love the simplicity of your map – just black and gold and the outlines.

  13. That looks great! I love a great “knock-off” deal.

  14. You have such an eye for design, I see it in everything that you do. This map is amazing and so well done! Thanks again for sharing your tremendous talents with us. 🙂

  15. That is so well done. Your blog is such a joy! Thank you!
    Smiles, Alice

  16. That is beautiful. Very minimalist

  17. WOW! That looks amazing. Great job!!

  18. Beautiful, educational, and simple with a touch of elegance, too. Great Job!

  19. That looks wonderful. Like you said, a two for one! Art plus learning. I loved doing state puzzles with Austin when he was little!!

  20. This is great and I didn’t know there was such thing as chalkboard fabric. Opens up all sorts of possibilites. Pinning.


  21. Oh Stephanie Lynn, I love this project! There’s just one thing…would you believe I’m posting the same one in a week? With different materials, of course. But the same knock off! Too funny!
    xo Becca

  22. You did a great job on that map, and I’m sure it took many hours. Fabulous!

  23. What a great idea! It looks great. Poor Michigan just looks like a big lump, though 🙁

  24. You probably won’t see this since this is an older post, but I just wanted to say I LOVE this map! I have done a globe in virtually the same way but have really wanted a map too…and your colors are perfect for my boys’ room! When you tire of it, just send it my way. ha ha.

  25. this is great! I’ve been trying to find an idea like this to use chalkboard. Thanks for sharing !


Leave a Reply to Susan @ homeroad.net Cancel reply