How to make your own Pirate Ship and Treasure Map

Posted on July 31st, 2016

Trash 2 Treasure August

“Arrrr me lovelies” and welcome to my third post on ‘How to Make’ pirate crafts. I began with simple pirate crafts with a cutlass and eye patch, moved onto a Treasure box and treasure and now am looking at the all important Pirate Ship and Treasure Map in this post. These pirate activities have been used at Coombe Mill with huge success in our weekly Activity hour session. Every time we run a pirate afternoon I add something new to keep things fresh and interesting. The pirate ship started life as a rowing boat, then was combined with a Maypole from our May Day dancing to finally form a Pirate Boat. Treasure Maps are an old favourite the children always enjoy. Both activities are great for inspiring creativity and imagination in children. 

How to make a Pirate Ship and a Treasure Map

Pirate Ship

What you’ll need:-

  • Large cardboard box, we used one our new running machine had arrived in for the Coombe Mill Gym
  • Strong pole or stick, we used a pole from an old ripped windbrake
  • Duct Tape colours
  • Floristry ribbon in your choice of colours. Red, white and back would be best though ours was multi-coloured reused from Maypole dancing the previous week!  
  • Sticks 
  • Scissors

What you'll need for the Pirate ship


  1. Push your pole or stick into the ground (you may need to use a mallet or stone to help) and measure your lengths of floristry ribbon to make your mast and rigging.
  2. Attach the Floristry Ribbon to the top of the pole with Duck Tape Colours.
Pirate Ship Steps 1 and 2
Pirate Ship Step 3 Putting together the Mast and the Ship
  1. Cut a hole in the base of your cardboard box and slide it over your mast and rigging.
  1. Tie your ‘rigging’ to the box, if your box doesn’t have pre-cut handles like ours did you may need to cut holes to use. 
Pirate Ship Step 4 attaching the Rigging to the Ship
Pirate Ship step 5, Creating the oars.
  1. Cut small holes along each side of your box and push sticks through to create oars. 

Your ship is ready for your pirates to climb aboard and sing some shanty songs. We invented a take on the classic Row row row your boat as follows:

Row row row your ship

gently over the sea,

If you see a pirate coming

don’t forget to scream,


Kids singing in the Pirate Ship

Treasure Map

What you’ll need:-

  • Paper or wall paper roll
  • Pens or paint
  • Tea bag

What You'll Need for the Treasure Map


  1. Fold your piece of A4 paper in half 
Treasure Map Step 1 Fold your piece of paper in half
Treasure Map Step 2 Tear around the edges of the paper
  1. Keeping it folded, tear around the edge to make it look old and tattered.
  1. Unfold and design and colour your map
Treasure Map Step 3 Design the Map
Treasure Map Step 4, age it with an old teabag
  1. Dab the map with a used tea bag to age it.

A few fun additions you could try:-

  • Try Adding a Pirate Flag with a stick and paper or fabric to the mast of your ship
  • Why not make a group treasure map. We used a section of Wallpaper taped to the ground to do this with each child adding their own unique map attributes.

Painting the giant Treasure Map

Vlog tutorial for How to Make a Pirate Ship and Treasure Map

Joining in with Trash 2 Treasure

If you have post about something you have made with something from nature or something you would have otherwise have thrown away please come and share on Trash 2 Treasure. The linky will run on the 1st Monday of every month and stay open for the full month. Posts can take any form, all that matters is that the item made has primarily been upcycled from something of little value or found in nature. Leaves and loo rolls, sticks and staples, there are so many throw away items which, with a little imagination, can be turned into something of value. Most of my something from nothing craft tutorials will come from fun keepsakes we have made with the children in our farm activity hour but sometimes I will share bigger upcycling projects from Farmer Nick too. I hope through the linky to acquire some new ideas and I welcome all posts old and new.  

A little extra from the awesome folk at Duck Tape Colours

Trash 2 Treasure sponsored by Duck Tape UK with Coombe Mill Holidays for creative fun.


Trash to Treasure is sponsored by Duck Tape Colours, makers of colourful tape to add pattern and sparkle to all your upcycling projects. My favourite upcycling post each month will receive 3 colourful rolls of tape to inspire your next project. Do check out their website for plenty of creative ideas. 

My July winner of the duck tape colours is Kerry from A Journey of Footsteps with a Pokamon Storage Box. Pokamon storage box July Trash 2 Treasure winner

As always there were some wonderful upcycled ideas last month, Please keep them coming.

My other favourites during the month were a knights jousting pole by Leandra at Lara Bee UK and a bespoke t shirt quilt by Jill at Creating my Way to Success

When joining in please use the hashtag #Trash2Treasure on Twitter, Instagram or Google Plus and I’ll find you

If you link up I’ll send you an invite to pin on my Trash 2 Treasure Pinterest board   

Please grab my badge and join my crafting journey and do pop back to check out other people’s posts during the month.

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