How to Flatten a Folded Map so You Can Frame It
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How to Flatten a Folded Map so You Can Frame It

September 10, 2019

Hi I’m Charlie Neuschafer at New World Maps we sell a lot of folded maps. Old oil company maps, National Geographic map, Official State Highway maps, travel brochures, and other paper ephemera that’s folded. And we get asked from our customers. How a… how do you flatten that map? I want to frame it, but I want to get the folds out. Well, I’m gonna show you. It’s really easy to do. Realize that anything that’s folded was flat when it was printed and then it was later folded. So it’s easy to unfold it and flatten the folds. In fact, National Geographic used to include a little blurb that said feel free to.. you wanna frame your map, feel free, go ahead and use an iron. They said a hot iron, and I wouldn’t say that’s not something that we recommend, but if you got an iron, you iron your shirts, you can flatten your map. It’s that simple, but I would use the warm setting on your iron You don’t want to burn your map and you don’t want to set your house on fire. But we use a smaller version of that just because it’s a little handier for all the ones that we work on here and What you do, first of all open up the map on a flat, clean surface. Take a damp paper towel fold it up and moisten the folds what this does is relax the fibers in the paper and once you’ve done that take your iron and always use an interleaving sheet of some sort all right, so you’re not putting your iron in direct contact with the paper and then just iron the folds it’s that simple I’m ironing the folds and having fun too. And when you’re done, you’ll have a flat.. a flat map that you can frame and when it’s time to frame visit our website where we have a page on framing tips. Very useful. Handy, we hope. And I hope you see how this easy this is We’re just flattening the folds on this map This happens to be the map of the Virgin Islands, but it could be a map of anywhere. And the folds are now flat. Perfecto. Ready to frame. See how little time it takes. See how easy it is. You’ll have fun you can do your own fold flattening now. Thanks very much for watching and have a good day. Happy mapping.

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  1. Thank you for this! Recently came into possession of a large collection of US Department of The Interior Geological Survey maps. Got a lot of ironing ahead apparently!

  2. Really helpful. I purchased an art print and, unfortunately, it arrived all bent out of shape. I'll be sure to dampen the non printed side to avoid ink bleeding, and then I'll give it an ironing. I definitely want to salvage it

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