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Get Creative With Decoupage…

January 16, 2012

Unlike many other handicrafts that can take time to master, decoupage is a very simple process that anyone can do no matter how creative (or not!) they may be.  It’s a great technique to use if you want to create something totally unique and personal to you.   If you’re a fan of the upcycling trend, “converting waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality”, this is a great way of achieving just that!  Its fun, its easy and its cheap to do.

Cut outs can be sourced from wallpaper samples, computer printed images, photographs, newspapers, magazines, old maps, tissue paper, etc.  Before you begin to cut its a good idea to  seal the areas you intend to use by painting with with PVA adhesive.  This will prevent the ink bleeding from one image to another.   The exception to this would be any images on photographic paper which can be used as they are.  Ideally, before gluing onto your furniture, loose-lay your cut outs in position to determine the best arrangement.  If you are using a lot of small images I would suggest taking a digital photo at this stage.  This will allow you to refer back to your original layout once you begin to glue.   Using the PVA you can now stick on your cut outs – the glue will appear white while wet but will dry clear so it’s not a problem if you get some onto the front of your paper.  When finished allow the item to dry thoroughly before applying several coats of your chosen varnish.   Sand lightly with very fine sandpaper between coats.  I prefer to use a matt finish acrylic varnish but this will always be a matter of personal preference.

Whether you fancy being outlandish and quirky or subtle and sophisticated, with a little imagination you could transform the dullest piece of furniture into a real focal point!   A child’s chair covered in comic book heroes, a coffee table decorated with family photos or holiday postcards.  This fab comic book chair is the work of Laura (From Chaos Comes Creation) and it sounds like it was a real labour of love!

Depending on where you are planning to put your finished creation you may want to stick to a specific colour theme, period style or subject matter such as beach/sea (bathroom), tranquillity (bedroom), food (dining room), fairies (girls bedroom) – the possibilities are endless!  One of my favourite projects is the coffee table  (shown below) which I created with my niece.  Sophie & her husband love to travel so when they asked for suggestions as to how they could decorate their huge ‘boring’ coffee table I immediately thought of the ‘travel’ theme.  Using a map of the world, photographs, old paper money, foreign stamps, etc we created a montage of their travels around the world.  This is now a great talking point when friends call round – some have even spotted their own face somewhere on the table!

If your chosen item is to be completely covered with paper it may only require a quick rub down with sandpaper & a wipe clean before the fun starts!  Alternatively, you could paint your chosen piece in an appropriate colour and then decoupage certain parts of it, leaving some of the paintwork exposed as shown below.  When applying images to a set of drawers you can create a really effective look by slicing them horizontally and applying them in individual pieces, matching them carefully,  as shown below.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. June 13, 2012 17:29

    My son walked up behind me while I was reading this post and made me stop and show him the super hero chair. 🙂
    The furniture examples are beautiful- this makes me want to decoupage something!

  2. June 13, 2012 21:19

    Thats great! I am pleased you liked the post and if you get the time to do something of your own I would to see it.


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