Did you see the Treasure Maps in my last post? They're not only adorable but I made them out of fabric!!! You might be thinking - that just seems like too much work for a kids party. If you could see the way it's been played with since the birthday, and the lack of damage to it (no bends, no rips, no plastic pulling back, and still no need to wash it) then you would understand the reason I made it so sturdy. In other words: No Tears, No Drama, No printing 5 more in one week!
Honestly, I wasn't planning on making them all fabric, but after making the first one, for my son I decided to do the rest the same way. And because it was so easy I've made a tutorial for you.
Fabric Treasure Map Tutorial
1 Printable Map Image
1 8.5x11" page Printable or Photo Fabric
1 8.5x11" Heavy Weight Fusible Interfacing
1. 8.5x11" piece of Backing Fabric
1 8" piece or Ribbon (Optional)
Thread to Match
1. Get your Map image. You can either make on yourself, search for one, or I can personalize the one I made for you. Email me about the cost.
I created the map for his birthday and made each one individual with their name. I put images all around the path that related to places they had to find for their hunt. Envelope for Mailbox, Picnic Table, a Flower Path, and the Umbrella over the Water Table out back ending in finding the Treasure right by the Water Table. It was simple photos because of their age, and it worked great!
2. Test print the Map on regular paper first. That way I knew the colors looked good, and the size was right. If it doesn't look right, adjust the photo or printer settings and try again. You can also play around with the Map size and quantity. My son preferred the smaller (about 5x7). It's perfect because that means you can print two maps to one page. I used my HP Photo printer.
3. Print the Map onto the fabric page. Printer color can be set to "normal" and paper to "plain paper".
4. Follow the instructions for setting the color to the fabric.
I had to wash the fabric in cool water for about 30 seconds to make sure the ink wouldn't run anymore. Then I blotted the fabric to get some water out and ironed it dry with a dry iron.
5. Cut our each individual Map. *This does not mean perfectly cut out the detail, instead just cut on the white fabric so they are all separate.
6. Cut interfacing to size of Map. Iron the interfacing to the back (wrong side) of the Map. This is personal preference. I highly recommend a good interfacing, but you could use lightweight, or iron it on to the backing fabric instead of the map. Just depends on what you want.
7. Wrong sides together, match up the Map and backing. (*Optional: Fold the Ribbon in half and pin in between the Map and the backing.) Sew 1/4" border around the edge of the Map.
The backing fabric I used was fabric I ordered when I was pregnant with my first son. It wasn't at all what I expected (it's actually weird fish on it) but I was too lazy to return it. When I was about to make the maps I realized how perfect it would be - it sort of has an aged parchment look.
8. Trim the edge of the Map following the image as closely as possible. If you attached the ribbon, make sure not to cut it as you cut everything else. This image had a lot of indents around the edge of the map to make it seem more aged. It looked really good clipped out of the fabric too.
You're done. Stand back and admire your handi-work! Roll it up and tie it with the ribbon. The kids are going to love these!
I had some special pirate fabric I ordered from BugFabric.com! They have quite a few options, but I loved the Andover Pirate Line. It's great colors and tones and not as dark as some of the others. I plan to make a pirate banner for my son's bed, but used a little bit of the fabric to back one of the maps. It's so cute!
Here are all the maps made from one Package of Printable Fabric that I purchased for $12. Everything else I used I already but considering everything the maps probably cost $1.30 each to make.