Decoupage (or découpage) is the art of decorating an object by gluing coloured paper cutouts onto it in combination with special paint effects, gold leaf and so on.
I was very intrigued when I saw pictures online on what can be achieved using this technique and decided to give it a go..
I found this little side table in the amenity side and thought it was a good little table to practice my first attempt at decoupage.
It was pretty beat up and scratched, so before I did any work, I made sure I cleaned it properly, dried it and once dry I could sand down the old varnish and get rid of all the scratches and little bumps.
I then primed the wood and prepared it for painting.
I had some paint left over after one of my projects which was going nicely with my chosen design. You can use pretty much any paper – napkins, wallpaper, wrapping paper and even prints straight of your printer! However, be careful and youse only prints that have been printed of laserjet printer and not ink jet as otherwise the picture will bleed through.
I decided to go with the french theme and used this image I printed off from the internet on A3 paper.
I painted the little table and let it dry, ready for it to be decoupaged
Place the image over to see how you want it placed on the item you are decoupaging.
I did not use decoupage glue or mod podge which are both brilliant products, instead I used PVA glue mixed with water. Youse around 60/40 (PVA to Water) and shake well. The mixture will not be as sticky and thick as ordinary PVA.
Cover the area in glue mixture and place the print over it, use an old credit card to smooth out the air bubles. Don’t go over too many times as you dont want to damage the paper. Once you are happy with the surface, use the mixture and paint over the whole area. Be quick as the glue starts to get sticky. Let the table dry and don’t worry about it looking white as the PVA glue dries see through. The glue will make sure the picture is sealed in place.
Let the surface dry completely. Once the glue has dried off, you may see a few air bubles, use the sandpaper to get rid of them. I had a few lines which did not look very good, but I sanded them down and actually ended up with a distressed shabby chic look, which I loved!
As I was using PVA and water mixture, the surface is not protected, so it will require sealing. If you use mod podge, the mixture actually works also as sealant so you will not need the next step.
I then used clear gloss varnish over to seal and protect the surface. If the surface will be used many times, put an extra layer of varnish to have extra protection.
And this is the finished product!
Have fun and don’t be afraid to give it a go.. I had no idea what I was doing but I think it turned out pretty nice!