Wednesday, December 15, 2010

How to flatten rolled artwork

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*I know I'm not a painter, but I found this great little article on how to flatten posters or prints that come rolled in a tube. Thought my readers might find this article helpful!*

Shipping artwork is a tricky business. While shipping artwork in a flat container is ideal, it makes shipping the item more expensive. Rolling the artwork and shipping in a tube is more economical, but it requires the recipient or framer to flatten the piece before displaying. Today's art article of interest from Wiki How shows to how to flatten a piece of art in order to frame or display it.

How to Flatten a Rolled Map or Poster

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Rolled wall maps or posters are hard to put on the wall if they're trying to roll back up. Here's how to get them to straighten up.


  • Roll your poster opposite from the way that it curls. Start loose and tighten it up as you go, to avoid creasing it. Sometimes this is enough to flatten it, depending on the paper and how long it has been rolled.
  • Wrap rubber bands around your opposite-rolled poster.
  • Let your poster sit like this for a few hours.
  • Remove the rubber bands and place your poster flat on a clean surface. Put it so that the side towards which it's curling.
  • Smooth out the poster and place weights on the corners and in the center of your poster for 2 to 4 hours. Books are a good choice.
  • Remove the weights.
  • Hang the poster.


  • If your poster continues to curl after completing step 5, keep the weights on for longer.
  • Good substitutes for paperweights include smooth rocks, glass jars, bean bags, and heavy books. Don't put heavy weights on the poster on a soft surface. The poster could crinkle.
  • Work gently to avoid crinkling the poster.
  • If you place the poster on the floor to flatten it, make sure it is out of the way so that nobody steps on it.


  • Ironing does not work for flattening posters.
  • If you want to flatten a vintage poster, please take it to a professional.
  • If you want to laminate a poster, flatten it first.
  • Do not use rubber bands that have ink stamps on them, as they may stain your paper.

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Flatten a Rolled Map or Poster. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

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