The Language Show Live in London was much less stressful than last year for one key reason: we knew how to hang our maps on the modular wall systems. Last year, Velcro, blu-tac, and wall hanging strips all failed. After getting everything finally set up on the night before the event, I arrived early the next morning to find all of the maps on the ground. Panic! Copious amounts of double-sided tape came to the rescue, but it had to be reapplied throughout the show and cleanup was a pain.
This year, I was prepared. The key? Magnets.
The top row of maps was easy - I just used clips to attach to the top of the walls. The bottom row, however, needed to be hung on the vertical, smooth, flat surface of the walls. Complicating matters were the vertical support ribs that stuck out about half an inch from the wall itself. This meant that you could not put a solid bar or panel flush against the wall.
The solution turned out to be very simple, largely reusable, and very affordable. It's also a solution you can employ for non-fabric materials you want to preserve and reuse. You can also use it at home with minimal damage to walls.
Essentially, all you need is some very strong, yet inexpensive magnets and scotch tape. Take a strip of scotch tape and tape one magnet to the flat surface of the wall. Run the strip vertically so it is under tension. Then put your map or poster over top and place another magnet on top. This will hold the material firmly in place without puncturing, tearing, or damaging the map or poster. It is then also really easy to take everything down when you're done. There's no messy glue or worry about tearing materials on the way down. Just take the top magnets off, take everything down, then remove the magnets still hanging on the wall.
The simplicity of the method is actually surprising, especially considering how inexpensive and reusable it is. I've never seen anyone else do this, so I figured I'd share the method through our blog in case it is of use to anyone. This year, we watched one of our neighbors at the show struggling to get their posters affixed to the wall systems, using tons of disposable wall hanging strips before success. Then, there was the struggle at the end to remove everything without damaging the posters. The magnets are so small you barely notice them, yet they actually hold the weight of our maps more stably than considerable amounts of double-sided tape.
BUY A LANGUAGE MAP HERE.