How To Make A Scratch Map Frame With Window Trim

How to make a scratch map frame with window casing

How To Make a Scratch Map Frame With Window Trim/ Casing – Open Frame

Here is a Scratch Map frame idea that is easy! I have tried to make this project user-friendly and possibly to do for people who do not have a workshop or any power tools. Check out my other fame and display projects that require no power tools.

We are going to eliminate the use of glue or nails by using a heavy duty double-sided tape. The new generation of heavy-duty double-sided tape is a game changer. This tape allows you to do things that were only possible with nails and screws.

We are also going to leave the frame open by using no glass. This will allow us to assess the frame for scratching.

Window casing is available at any hardware store making it a great material to work with. You will have many choices of trim when picking something out that you want to work with. The styles will come in different width (in this project I will be using a 3″ casing) and there will be a choice of different profiles. This refers to the look of the finished product.

Here is what you will need, always remember to be creative with the supplies that you have or are available to you.  


  • 2pcs of Window casing/trim (usually sold 8ft/pcs)
  • Regular double-sided tape
  • Heavy Duty double-sided tape
  • Form Board or Cardboard
  • Picture Hanging Kit


  • Miter Box/ Handsaw
  • Box Cutter Knife, Tape Measure, Hammer (Basic Tool Kit)

Tip: Always be careful to protect the face of your Scratch Map, you don’t want to damage or scratch the film. When resting the map down, only rest it on smooth surfaces. Don’t ever drag the map when it is face down. 

1. Remove your Scratch map from the tube and let it sit flat on a table overnight. Use books to hold down the corners. The map will be much easier to work with once it is flat and not trying to roll up on its own.

flatten a scratch map

2. Measure the width and length of your map and take a note of the measurement on a piece of paper. We are going to cut the window casing 1/2″ shorter than the width and height. This will allow the frame to overlap the map by 1/4″ on all sides and give us a very nice finish.

Tip: Measure twice, Cut once.

measure the scratch map

3. Starting with the height, cut two pieces of trim, subtract 1/2″ from the actual measurement of the map so the edge of the map will be under the frame in the final steps. Cut two pieces of trim for the width, also subtracting 1/2″ off the total length.

Tip: Put everything together to check for fit before using any double-sided tape.

Tip: When using the miter box, don’t push hard on the handsaw, let the blade do the work as you push and pull.

Tip: Having a helper hold the window casing, this will make this job easier.


miter box and saw

4. Measure your form board to be 4″ wider and 4″ higher than your map dimensions. This is so when we center the map we will have two inches around the perimeter of the map to attach the trim.

Example: If the width of your Scratch Map is 23 1/2″, the width of the foam board should be 27 1/2″. This will allow 2″ of foam board to show on each side when the map is centered. Do the same for the height. 

Tip: For your safety, don’t expose more blade then is necessary. Form board is 1/4″ thick, so 1/2″ of the blade should do.

5. Use regular double-sided tape to mount the map onto the foam board. Mount the map in the center of the foam board leaving a two inch around the perimeter.

Note: Regular double-sided tape is thin and allows the Scratch Map to sit flat, we need the map to sit flat so it is scratchable.

The heavy-duty double-sided tape we will use for the casing, it is thick foam tape, we need to use this on the casing because it is super strong!

mounting a scratch map

6. Nail a picture hanging hook on the back of the top piece of trim. Be sure that the nails are short enough that they will not go all the way through the trim.

Tip: Drive the nails on the thick side of the trim to ensure that they do not go through the trim.

install picture hook

7. Now we are going to test the frame to for fitment. Lay the trim around the Scratch Map and make sure that the length and angles are fitting properly. Adjust length or angle if necessary.

Once you have found the perfect fitment, take close note of the exact location, use a pencil to make a small mark on the map if necessary.

Tip: Put everything together to check for fit before using any double-sided tape.

scratch map frame

8. Paint or stain the trim. If you are going to leave it natural move on to step 9. I am not painting or staining in this project.

9. Using a heavy duty double-sided tape, apply on the full length of each side of the map. To get the best results take your time to thoroughly push the tape down on the foam board.

doublesided tape

10. Start with the bottom piece of the trim and install in a clockwise manner. Referring to your pencil marks, lay the trim down on the form board.

Tip: It is important to get the placement of the trim right the first time. But just in case you have to pull a piece off do not push down on the trim until you are happy with all four places. Once you are happy with your frame push firmly and it will be locked in place.

Why not add a bit more depth? The foam board makes a great surface to use map markers and pins. This is a great way to personalize and dress up your map. This will add a lot of visual depth to your display.

Congratulations! It is time to hang and display your Window Casing Scratch Map Frame!

Scratch map frame

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