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Decoupaging for the Holidays

Updated on November 21, 2011

Fun and Attractive Homemade Gift Ideas

Each year most people face the same dilemma….finding unique holiday gift ideas. For those friends and family who enjoy handmade crafts, a decoupaged gift could be a fun and attractive gift solution.

The definition of decoupage: the art or process of decorating a surface with shapes or illustrations cut from paper, card, etc.

I would like to share with you my way of doing decoupage.

1.Suggested items: Mod Podge(found at craft stores, such as Michaels),White glue(such as Elmers), Scissors, paint, object you are decoupaging, paint brushes or sponge brushes, newsprint, colored tissue paper, decorative napkins, magazines, cards, laser clipart or any paper you may find that will cover the object you are decorating. You may cover your object with one layer of paper or several.

2.Decoupage simply means applying Mod Podge or a glue like Elmers to the front and back of a decorative piece of paper and then applying it to a surface. If my craft idea requires more than one layer, I like to either paint the object I’m decorating or cover its entire surface with some type of paper as the first layer. I think the item looks better if the original surface (ie: wood, glass etc…) is not showing.

3. Some people use the Mod Podge to glue their paper to the surface. I use Elmer’s glue watered down just a bit. It is less expensive, and for me, I find it easier to smooth out the wrinkles. Smoothing out the wrinkles is the most tedious part, but necessary to have a nice looking piece. Be patient and careful not to tear anything. I usually use my fingers to smooth my surface, but choose what works for you. I use the Mod Podge as the last protective layers once I have completed my project.

Note: Mod Podge comes in various sheens- use what you like best.

4. Once my surface is covered, it’s time for everything to dry. If I only want the one decorative layer on the object, all that’s left to do is to apply a couple layers of Mod Podge in order for the surface to harden. Mod Podge is thicker than glue and water proofs and protects better, but if you don’t have it, use undiluted white glue. You can even spray a coat of lacquer on top of the Mod Podge or glued layers once they have dried to help waterproof and protect your surface even better.


I covered the legs with red tissue paper for layer one and with various pictures and words from Bon Apetit for layer two. Lastly, I painted on some white swirls, and after the paint dried,applied a few layers of Mod Podge for protection.
I covered the legs with red tissue paper for layer one and with various pictures and words from Bon Apetit for layer two. Lastly, I painted on some white swirls, and after the paint dried,applied a few layers of Mod Podge for protection.
On the stool seat, I painted the lady and the pot and treated the rest of the seat as I did the legs. After the last layer of Mod Podge, I sprayed a couple of coats of lacquer because the stool serves as a functional piece.
On the stool seat, I painted the lady and the pot and treated the rest of the seat as I did the legs. After the last layer of Mod Podge, I sprayed a couple of coats of lacquer because the stool serves as a functional piece.

5. Remember to let each layer of the Mod Podge or glue dry before adding another layer. I decorated a stool for my kitchen and chose to make it a multimedia piece. The legs have a layer of colored tissue paper for the first layer and an assortment of kitchen related pictures as a second layer. I painted a picture on part of the seat and decoupaged the rest of it. I also painted designs over the decoupaged legs before adding the final layer of Mod Podge. There really is no rule for how decoupage plays a role in your piece, so use your imagination.

1. You can decoupage just about anything! My niece and nephew made Christmas plates(ceramic) for their parents. We also covered a wooden tissue box (can be purchased online or at craft stores). Anything to which you can glue paper, can be decoupaged! You will see I glued sea shells on our tissue box and Mod Poged over them…See you can do just about anything you want with this flexible craft!! If you decide to give it a try, I’d love to hear how your project turned out!

The tissue box my niece and I made together

We chose clip art and had it sized and printed out on a laser printer. This particular project only called for one layer.
We chose clip art and had it sized and printed out on a laser printer. This particular project only called for one layer.
We painted the top of the box and glued shells to the top, then applied three layers of Mod Podge to the whole piece.
We painted the top of the box and glued shells to the top, then applied three layers of Mod Podge to the whole piece.

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    • picklesandrufus profile image
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      picklesandrufus 5 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      thanks for stopping by Natalie!

    • natalie234 profile image

      natalie234 5 years ago from Croatia

      Well done!Thanks forsharing your ideas!

    • picklesandrufus profile image
      Author

      picklesandrufus 5 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      RTalloni I have done mixed media with it too and it turned out great! good luck and thanks for stopping by!

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      So nice to see your projects and learn from your tips as I am planning a couple of mixed media projects that will include decoupage. I'll be decoupaging onto canvas so I appreciate the tip about watered down glue. Thanks!

    • picklesandrufus profile image
      Author

      picklesandrufus 6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      thanks for the nice comments prasetio 30. I appreciate your support!

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 6 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Very inspiring hub. You have wonderful idea here. Thanks for writing and share with us. Well done and rated up!

      Prasetio

    • picklesandrufus profile image
      Author

      picklesandrufus 6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      Eliza57- what a great idea for your light switches. Those personal touches are what makes a house a home and many times what sells them!

    • Eliza57 profile image

      Eliza57 6 years ago

      Great pieces. I love the stool you did. I am in the process of doing my light switch covers in my bathroom using my scrap material. It has been a while since I have messed with decoupage. Thanks again for a great Hub!

    • picklesandrufus profile image
      Author

      picklesandrufus 6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      Hi Linda, Thanks for checking out this Hub.....you have all the skills and surely anyone would love to get one of your pretty decoupage gifts!

    • profile image

      Linda Morgan 6 years ago

      So glad I am reading this in November~ plenty of time to perfect my technique and make a Christmas gift! Thanks for getting my creativity flowing!

    • picklesandrufus profile image
      Author

      picklesandrufus 6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      Thanks Keith. My nephew has fun with it....of course making cool guy things, like a box to hold his fishing stuff.

    • Keith Matyi profile image

      Keith Matyi 6 years ago from Denton, TX

      Good Story and directions! I think I just may try it!

    • picklesandrufus profile image
      Author

      picklesandrufus 6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      Thanks Eiddwen, it really is a great thing to do with kids!

      Thanks TL...you got me back into it from my youth-thanks!

      Julia....maybe decoupaging is another fun thing to do besides photography!

    • profile image

      TL 6 years ago

      Great article and ideas as always, Sheila! Love your tissue box and stool! You and Donna have me wanting to do my own stool!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 6 years ago from Wales

      Hi pichlesandrufus,

      This one I am voting up and bookmarking. I used to do this when my children were small but haven't thought about it since.

      So maybe it is time to try it out with the grandchildren now.

      Tahnk you for sharing;take care and enjoy your day.

      Eddy.

    • profile image

      jtpxt 6 years ago

      Great idea. I've been collecting stamps for years so a few years ago I decoupaged a couple of boxes with duplicate stamps. If I can do this anyone can!

    • picklesandrufus profile image
      Author

      picklesandrufus 6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      I agree Linda! We missed you at our decoupage night Marion! Hope you get the chance to give it a shot!!

    • profile image

      Mflawton2002 6 years ago

      I missed our cc decoupage night and now with your tips I think I can do it at home by myself!

    • LindaSmith1 profile image

      LindaSmith1 6 years ago from USA

      The tissue boxes are really nice. Good way to create some shabby chic decor too.