Build Your Own Chicago is a series of postcards published by Wurlington Press which can be cut and assembled into miniature paper models of prominent Chicago landmarks. All postcards are designed and drawn by Matt Bergstrom. There are also postcards available of landmarks in New York, San Francisco, Washington DC and other places.
The postcards measure 4-5/8" x 6-3/4" and include all pieces and instructions necessary to make one model. The scale of the miniatures varies, depending on what size will fit on a postcard.
The models are designed to be as accurate as possible and therefore can be challenging to assemble. If you are comfortable with a hobby knife, craft tools and a bit of patience, you will be able to build them. See the Tips page for helpful hints on putting the models together.
Because Build Your Own Chicago models are small they are challenging to build and are most appropriate for teenagers or adults. For smaller children, we have designed some simpler Chicago cutout kits.
The L Train and John Hancock Build Your Own Chicago cards are the easiest to assemble, while Wrigley Field and Marina City are the most difficult. If you'd like a larger scale model you can use a color copier to enlarge the card to make it easier to build.
All the cards are mailable oversized postcards with space on the reverse of the card for a letter stamp, address and a message. Each card also includes a short informative description of the landmark the model represents.
Instructions are included in the form of isometric diagrams on the front of the cards. If you would like more detailed instruction for any of the models, visit the How To Build It page.
These Elevated Trains are designed at a scale of 1:160. They are 1" tall by 4" long when complete. You can see more pictures of completed models in the Photo Gallery.
You can order postcards directly from the designer by clicking on the "Order" flag to the left.
Copyright 2022 Matt Bergstrom