DIY Map Clock From Repurposed Spindles

DIY Map Clock from Repurposed Spindles

I’ve been wanting to make a diy map clock for quite a while.

Years probably.

It’s one of those projects that has been in the back of my brain just waiting to be brought into reality.

This month’s Thrifty Chicks spindles project challenge was the perfect time to get to it.

Sponsored: Decoupage product for my project provided by DecoArt. This project idea, choice of product used, and all opinions are 100% my own. See full Disclosure Policy here

Thrifty Chicks Repurposed Spindles Project Challenge

On the second Wednesday of each month I join some very talented blogging friends for a Thrifty Chicks project challenge, and with a different theme each time it’s really a lot of fun.

If you missed any of the past projects you can find them here.

At first I thought I didn’t have any spindles, so I was looking at my local thrift store haunts and I wasn’t having any luck.

Then I remembered this table that I found a few years ago. It was lost behind a bunch of stuff in my greenhouse turned treasure storage.

I have no idea what this little table would have been used for.

I’m guessing some kind of display, but the small size of it makes it pretty useless to me as a table.

I brought it home because I loved the spindles and thought I might take it apart one day.

Well that day is finally here.

repurposed baking pan and wooden spindles for diy map clock

The table was put together with two-sided screws and was very easy to take apart.

For this diy map clock I’m repurposing some wooden spindles from that little table, as well as a vintage baking pan.

outlining shape of baking pan on map with pencil

To get the nice round shape of the baking pan mark the shape with a pencil on the map.

You’ll see my cut out a little later.

Working with maps is a lot of fun, and I’d love to do more map projects. Like this silver tray map table.

aqua blue spray painted wooden spindles

Then spray paint the spindles with three light coats of whatever color you like.

I used a vibrant aqua blue.

It’s so happy and bright.

wooden spindles spray painted aqua blue

If your spindles have screw ends like mine tape them with painter’s tape to keep them free of paint.

Measuring, marking, and drilling the baking pan

measuring and marking center of baking pan

To find the middle of the baking pan measure across from top to bottom, and then side to side.

I spray painted the baking pan because at first I thought I was going to show the paint on the side of the pan, but you’ll see later that I changed my mind.

measuring around baking pan to mark where spindles will go

To decide where the twelve spindles will go measure around the pan and mark with pencil.

Double check that the marks are evenly spaced before you start drilling.

Measure twice, drill once.

drilling holes in side of baking pan for spindles

To create the holes start with a small metal drill bit.

It doesn’t really matter what size.

This makes it much easier to drill through with the larger bit needed for both the spindles and the clockworks.

Use whatever size bit you need.

IMPORTANT: Always, always, always wear eye protection when drilling because of metal shards. Always wear gloves as well. It’s helpful to keep a piece of paper below to catch them. I also always use a sticky roller thingy to clean the area once I’m done drilling just in case there are any stragglers that somehow made it off the paper.

Applying map to baking pan

map cut out and decoupage medium for diy map clock

To apply the map cut out onto the baking pan I’m using DecoArt decoupage medium for paper, and a craft brush.

I often use the one inch foam brushes for decoupage but I didn’t have any, but any craft brush will do the job.

applying decoupage medium onto baking pan for map

Before doing the top I decided I wanted to cover the sides with map pieces as well..

To do this just cut some strips a little wider than the baking pan side, apply some of the decoupage medium and put the pieces in place.

applying decoupage medium onto baking pan for map

Run the paper along the edge of the baking pan, and sort of fold it over the pan as you go.

smoothing out map with hand in plastic bag

Apply some decoupage medium to the top of the pan, put down the map circle, and smooth it out with your hand inside a small miscellaneous plastic bag.

Do three light coats to the top and the side, letting it dry in between.

poking holes with pencil through map and baking pan

Use a pencil to poke through the paper to reveal the holes.

clockworks and hands for diy map clock

Now it’s time to turn this baby into a clock.

Attaching clockwork and spindles for diy map clock

front of clock with clockworks added

Once the map is all dry you can install the clockworks into the middle of the pan, and screw the spindles through the holes.

back of diy map clock with repurposed spindles and baking pan

To secure the spindles in place use nuts that should be tightened just enough so the spindles don’t move.

Hanging my diy baking pan map clock

hanging repurposed spindle clock with jute twine

Because the clockwork that I’m using doesn’t have a hanger on it I’m just using a piece of jute for hanging.

diy map clock with red spray painted hands

For some contrast, and because I love the combo of aqua blue and red, I spray painted the black clock hands a happy red.

I have a thing for clocks with no numbers on them, like this lazy susan tray clock, and this vintage screwdriver sunburst clock, but if you prefer numbers you could easily add some stick-ons.

view of sides of diy map cliock with repurposed spindles

Here you can see the side of the clock.

I’m so glad I decided to apply map pieces there too. I think it makes the spindles stand out more.

Supplies used for DIY map and spindle clock

– wooden spindles
– round metal baking pan
– map
– decoupage medium
– craft brush
– clockworks and hands
– nuts
– scissors

Repurposed spindles diy map clock

And here’s my finished diy map clock with the my repurposed spindles marking the hours.

I took it outside so I could get a pic in natural light. My living room, where it’s hanging right now, is natural-light challenged.

Create a DIY map clock using repurposed spindles and baking pan

Now be sure to check out what my friends did with their spindle projects.

Just click on the links below to check them out.

  1. That’s me!
  2. Itsy Bits and Pieces: DIY Wood Spindle Pumpkin
  3.  Andrey Would! Vintage: Repurposed Spindles to Advent Countdown
  4. Little Vintage Cottage: Repurposed Window Valance

Thrifty Chicks Repurposed Spindles Project Challenge

Thanks so much for reading, and until next time…

keep on keepin’ on!


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  1. Debra Hubbs says:

    Ok so I thought eh clocks, not my thing but because it was made by you, I just had to check it out. This is amazing! Love it so much. You have outdone yourself again IMO. So cute! I ‘think’, not positive, that little table may have been an old telephone table .

    1. Thanks Debra! I never thought it might be a telephone table, but now that you mention it that kinda makes sense.

  2. Super cute, Tuula! I’ve got something I want to turn into a clock, too. This gave me some great tips!

  3. This is just so fabulous, Tuula! I have a thing for maps and for clocks, so you had me right from the start. I love that you painted out the hands in red and that you left the numbers off – so cheerful and fun. Off to pin. 🙂

    1. Thanks very much Sheila! I definitely have a thing for clocks too. I’m happy to know I’m not the only one.

  4. Elaine Hopper says:

    Great creativity on the use of the spindles for a clock! However I do have one question…. In the first picture where you showed the table you bought there was this wire musical Staff and lines that was really pretty. Did you do anything with that??? I absolutely love it! and would be interested in what you did with it….. ~ Elaine

    1. Thanks Elaine! I still have that musical piece. It’s in storage waiting for its some day. Maybe its time has come.

  5. Your clock gives off a nautical vibe. Reminds me of a ships steering wheel. I like the colors you chose. Turned out nice.

  6. Fabulous! I agree with Olivia, it definitely has a nautical vibe to it. Again, I am so envious of your creative imagination!

  7. Saw all the other projects for this month and I like yours and the pumpkin the best! Wouldn’t that be great in an older boys bedroom? Or a man’s den? Or anywhere in MY house?? Love it! Dona

  8. Great looking clock! I bet that little table was originally a telephone table, even had a little drawer for an address book below. A telephone with a rotary dial on the front, a handset to listen to, wires coming out the back.

    1. Thanks Ruth! That’s so interesting. I guess it was pretty useful in its day.