My map obsession started when I was an exchange student to Brazil at the adventurous age of 16. Meeting other exchange students, plotting where they lived and how we would travel the world meeting up, was a favourite pastime back then. When I was 21 I did travel the world, working in the USA and London visiting many countries and having a fantastic time for four years. I loved visiting counties, staring, plotting and deciding where to travel in the new country. This just fuelled my obsession.
In my old home, I covered the kitchen cabinets in maps. Our wedding had ‘The World’ as a theme. Invitations, seating and ‘acts’ were from around the world. In our current home, maps adorn our walls, including the largest one we could find, which is in the kid’s bedroom.
This leads me to my favourite piece of the collection. You remember them, from primary school, world stamps that you plaster in ink. It was quite a skill to use them. Rolling the stamp on an ink pad and then rolling the map carefully onto paper to ensure even coverage without overlapping. Especially if using an exercise book with staples in the middle- oh dear that did muck up the outline of the country you were studying.
When a local school was culling resources, I was the lucky recipient. I felt like I had won the lottery. When thinking about how to display them, I knew I wanted to see them daily and have the opportunity to touch them if I, or others wanted to.
The handles were unscrewed (saved for a later project) and then the stamps were stuck to a piece of wood painted the same colour as the wall. My clever husband managed to screw it to the wall in the hall way at a height that little fingers could touch them but not look too low to an adult. I truly love them. I also love how visitors seem to do a double take, then reminisce about using them at school. “Poor children nowadays, just handed a photocopy missing out on all the skill involved with stamps and ink”.
Reminiscing plays such an important part with collections. Is there anything from your school days that you would like to collect or have collected?