Decoupage is an odd sounding DIY hack that once learnt, will transform the look and feel of your upcycles in no time. The best thing about learning how to decoupage is how easy it is; essentially, decoupage is the process of cutting, arranging and sticking images to an object, which is then coated with varnish.
When executed well, with images carefully chosen, the finished object can look hand painted; when done badly, the item will be a one-of-a-kind and unique DIY project.
To learn how to decoupage…
What You’ll Need:
- Decoupage Glue
- Paint Brushes
- Several Sponges
- An Old Piece of Furniture
- Pictures or Patterns to be Stuck
How to Decoupage:
Step 1: Failing to Prepare is Preparing to Fail
Before starting you need to prepare your object and make sure it’s ready to be transformed. Start by washing your item down, removing dirt, dust and any stains (that includes those sticking mug rings); (basically, anything that you don’t want to be forever on display beneath varnish).
Step 2: Cut!
By this stage you should have already chosen what images you’d like to decoupage and have them ready, if you’re not sure what type of things you can use – have a hunt around for these things in your home:
- Wrapping Paper
- Origami Paper
- Paper napkins
- Greeting cards
Now that you have your images sorted cut away anything you don’t want visible on your final project – excess white paper perhaps.
Due diligence is critical here as these cuts will be visible, so take it slow - be precise and neat with your cutting!
Tip: if you’re unsure about trimming away unwanted edges you can colour white boarders in similar shades or tones to the image – this will help it blend better.
Step 3: Action!
Stop! Put the glue away – don’t stick anything down until you’ve completed a trail arrangement. It’ll be too late to fix bad arrangements when they’re covered in glue!
Think wisely about how you want to place your images – this is the perfect opportunity to hide any imperfections on your furniture.
When you’re happy with your arrangement it’s time to take your decoupage glue and get sticking. Using a paint brush cover an area in glue and gently place your images on top. Once you’ve completed a whole area place cling film over the top and use a rub with a damp cloth – this will smooth out any air bubbles.
Ensure to wipe away any excess glue before leaving it to dry.
Step 4: Varnish
Once you’ve left your furniture to dry completely, it’s time to seal your DIY project in place. Decoupage requires multiple coats of varnish to stay intact – make sure you leave each layer to dry thoroughly beginning the next.
The type of varnish you choose will affect your final finish – of course – it’s best for you to research different types of varnish to know which is best. However, we recommend glossy as it remain clear regardless of multiple layers (and will leave a nice, shiny finish).
Now you know how to decoupage check out these 40 decoupage ideas for simple projects!
Author Biography: Sasha N is a digital marketer and copywriter by trade, but specialises in Art, Design and Interiors; she runs A Fancy Home (www.afancyhome.com)