Matchbook Landscapes is an interesting project by Krista Charles, who has collected old matchbooks ever since she salvaged a small collection from her then 90 year old grandfather-in-law.

For each matchbook I find where the location of the business would be in Google Maps and on the inside cover of the matchbook I make a pencil sketch of whatever is now shown at this location. On average each drawing takes about two hours to complete. Sometimes the places advertised on the matchbooks are still in business even after decades have passed, some businesses have changed names and are under new ownership, and some buildings are empty or have been torn down and replaced by new buildings or parking lots or highway expansion programs and even empty fields.

The age of the matchbooks I use vary, but all are a unique view into the previous business and the dreams of its owner and how these places and by extension all places and our histories change over time. Even the story of matchbooks has evolved and what was once a common item to give out to promote a business has now become a vintage item, rarer to find except in antique stores and our own junk drawers.

you can see the entire collection on her website and buy the matchbooks from her etsy store.


  1. So charming.
    I used to collect match boxes when I was younger.

    There are so many little jems in the most obscure places. :)


  2. How do you come across things like this? The project seems so unlikely, but also so creative/fantastic/charming. Did you find the project on Etsy, or did Krista contact you, or did someone refer you to it? However you discovered it, I’m glad you posted about it!

  3. What a lovely collection and concept. I used to collect matchbooks a few years back and loved finding such interesting designs and places. Thank so much for sharing!

  4. Thank you for sharing this amazing artwork with us :)
    I postet about it in by blog as well (in German) and added a link back to your blog. I hope you’re fine with that :)

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