Had a sleepless night this week, so it seemed as good an idea as any to start cutting out map circles at 4am, rather than pacing the floor. Very therapeutic, I must say, along with the two hot chocolates.
I didn’t butcher any ‘real’ maps for these, you may be relieved to hear, just a pad of writing paper from around 1990, when buying stationery cut from redundant otherwise-to-be-pulped map stock was all the rage. This has been sitting at the back of a drawer for long enough. Heck, it even qualifies as vintage on Etsy! – 20 years plus – so it’s high time I used it. I didn’t like it as letter-writing paper (the ink didn’t quite soak into the paper enough: smudge city) so it needed another use, and the map showed through distractingly.
My template was a 9cm scone cutter (the smooth top end, not the crinkly cutting end) and, yes, I laboriously drew round them all, then cut them out with scissors, then erased the pencil marks. As an anti-hair-tearing exercise, I’ve done a lot worse.
It took 44 dots to make an approximately 4m garland. Sewing them together was fun; the crunch of the needle going through the paper was strangely satisfying. I decided to go for what felt like a cartographic red thread (actually Sylko D 45, Turkey Red), rather than subtle white. Consequently, I think I may have added a curiously straight (Roman?) bridleway to Oxfordshire; maybe I should tell the Ramblers Association.
By the way, these are destined for a male relative with a big birthday to celebrate soon. I hope they’ll lend a certain restrained masculine joy to his big day. If he’s reading this, I’m sorry I spoiled your surprise…