Why such a interest in direction type materials? Who knows! I wish I could provide a deep and clever answer for my curiosity of them. Like most things for me....I just like the way they look, the colors the come in, and all that kind of surface stuff :) I guess it could be something about all the intricacy of the lines, compass rose's, grids, being able to pinpoint exactly where you are and thinking about yourself in the grand scheme of a much larger space around you... I also like the colors commonly used on world maps and globes... The pictured globes below are some of my favorite takes on these age-old geographical tools. These are by ImagineNations (http://www.artonglobes.com/) . Such endless possibilities, especially if you go with the kit version they provide! Adorn the Antartic or massive country of Africa with any sticker you want!
There is a 'world' full of ideas out there of creative was to use globes as decor. Here are some bright new ways i've seen that really deserve to be on display...(talk about global warming! :) )
That gold/coppery globe above is a fave of mine and would be a very easy and cheap DIY! Spray paint the globe, then use silver thumb tacks (from the Dollar Store) to cover the land portions. Love!
Although maps as art are typically seen in the home in rooms like the den, maybe a boys bedroom, etc...I think it has added impact and looks more interesting when used outside their standard element. That's not say using them in 'male' rooms is out..there is ALWAYS room for a map! I know that these next ideas aren't going to be for everyone's taste, but since I clearly have a map obsession...i'm really loving the thought of using them as wallpaper!
Maps are a great direction for design any way you use them, even if just for creating a color palette for a space, and not actually using a map as art, decor, or a wall covering. Since the world has been around for centuries, I feel like using it as a form of art or decor will be a trend that will be around just as long.