Disclosure: I created this post in partnership Modern Map Art, but all ideas included here are mine. This review contains a referral link.
I have the hardest time buying birthday gifts for my husband. Do I get him yet another shirt for work? (Boring.) Shoes? (He likes to pick out his own.) T-shirts with cool sayings on them? (Did that for Christmas.) Ties? (He hates wearing them.) Ski gear? (He knows what he wants.) Yet another electronic gadget? (He really doesn’t need that, does he?)
You see the challenge here, right? I find that birthdays have shifted, as we’ve gotten older. It’s much, much less about the gift giving, and so much more about celebrating another year of being together and creating memories.
That’s where the folks at Modern Map Art come in.
As I was surfing the Internet looking for birthday gift inspiration, Modern Map Art reached out to tell me about their products based on more than 600 cities, countries, and ski spots around the world. You name the place, and they likely have taken a section of its map and turned it into a colorful piece of art. What a fun idea for world travelers, recent graduates, or friends moving to a new city.
Since I was intrigued by Modern Map Art’s blend of art and memories, I first looked at their artwork of Boston, as it was, after all where my husband and I first met. The Boston piece is offered in a number of colors, including Celtics green (of course!). Then I saw Glasgow. My husband studied at the University of Glasgow during college, and we traveled to Scotland to celebrate our engagement. The country has always been special to us, and I loved the idea of having a remembrance of our time there hanging in our house. The Glasgow poster, in particular, is a vivid blue that I thought would be a good fit for our home. Ta da! Birthday gift dilemma solved.
In addition to prints, Modern Map Art sells phone cases and pillows of its map art, and prices start at US$29.99. They also have a custom option, allowing you to create map art for a place you find meaningful. That could be a thoughtful wedding or engagement gift, or even a baby gift. (Think of the spot the wedding took place, where the proposal was made, or where the baby was born.) Shipping is currently free in the US, and the artwork is mailed in strong cardboard tubes, with each piece wrapped up in tissue paper inside, keeping it safe during transport.
A few weeks ago, amid bites of birthday cake, my husband unwrapped his gift, which I had placed in a white frame I already owned. The first thing he did, upon realizing the picture was of Glasgow, was open up Google Maps on his phone to see if the neighborhood he lived in during college was captured on the map, and sure enough, it was. He was quite pleased, and I was relieved. Success! Now, I only another 365 days to come up with next year’s birthday gift! All ideas welcome.