A map, flour, and water.

I was walking home from my weekly volunteer gig and stumbled upon this fantastic book full of maps.  It was sitting just on the sidewalk in front of one of my neighbor’s house.  I love this amazing phenomenon in the Bay Area where folks put out stuff they do not want anymore and others dive through it to find new treasures.  I have walked by several piles of stuff bundled together under a “free” sign in the last 8 years I have lived here.  Almost every time, I watch the pile slowly disappear as folks find something they like and take it home.  This time around, that person was me!

a book of maps sits on a table

I decided to turn some of those map pages into a new paper bowl!  And, if you have and old book, map, paper, hanging around then make yourself a bowl for your keys, fruit, popcorn and more and more.  They make great party decorative bowls.  Of course, you can’t put anything wet in them.

This project is even more fun because all you need is flour, water and a paint brush.  AND, you could even do it without the paint brush.

So, here’s a quick tutorial on How to REuse a Map to Make a Paper Bowl:

First, you will need to make some homemade glue with flour and water.

I use a 1 water:2 flour ratio and then adjust it to create a watery paste.  If you have made pancakes before, it will sort of be that consistency.

flour sitting in a bowl water being poured into a bowl of flour a knife stirring flour and water together

1.  Find a bowl that is the shape and size you would like your new map bowl to be.

2.  Tear out a few pages from your map book.  Or, if you are using an old map, cut it into squares.

3.  Turn your page so that the map side is facing the bowl.  Press it down into the center of the bowl.

pressing a piece of paper into a bowl

4.  Use your paint brush to spread your homemade glue on the first piece of paper.  You will have to hold it down into the bowl so it will start to take on the shape of the bowl.

5.  Take another piece of paper with the map side facing the bowl and press it into the bottom sheet.  Use the paint brush to soak the paper with glue and it will begin to stick the paper behind it.

layers of paper being glued together inside of a bowl

6.  Take another piece of paper and push it into the bowl from a different direction.  Glue it down.

7.  Work your way around the bowl with several pieces of paper.

a bowl full of paper that has been glued together

8.  Now, start to create the inside of your bowl by placing some pieces of paper with the map side facing up toward you and gluing it to your bowl.

gluing the inside of a paper bowl

9.  Work your way around the bowl again.   I matched up some of the pieces of paper to the bottom layers when I could.

The bowl is not going to be perfect, which in my opinion, makes it so much cooler.

10.  Let the glue dry.

11.  Fill your bowl with awesome stuff.

a paper bowl made from an old map is filled with mail a wallet and keys



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