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Create a Themed Collage Table

Updated on November 7, 2013

What is a collage table and is it similar to a college table? A collage is defined simply as a collection of items that have been glued to a surface. Thus the word collage is derived from the French word “colle” which means “to glue.” A collage table is just a table with some items glued to it in a free form artistic manner. (No to the college table BTW.)

The items that are glued can be newspaper clippings, magazine pictures, photographs, ribbons or just about anything that is appealing. The art form of collage goes back several hundred years and is now enjoying a resurgence. In particular is the product of a themed collage. Here one designs or artistically creates an object for a specific person.

Some of the themes one could consider would be a desk in a teenagers room with family pictures, award certificates, school announcements or any other item that has special appeal to the teenager. Another common type of themed collage table is the family coffee table. Here you will find many pictures of family members at various family outings and activities. Each picture chosen to invoke found memories of when and where it was taken.

Other themes are also possible such as a table in the nursery with baby pictures, a phone table near the kitchen with copies of Grandma's favorite recipes or in the den with family vacation pictures. Any thing you can imagine will lend it self to making a collage table.

So how do you make a collage table? Well first you need a table. You can use one that you currently have or you can purchase a new one. Look for tables at thrift stores as they will tend to be cheaper than new ones. Since they already may have some slight blemishes it won't matter because you are going to remove the top surface any way. Do not select a table that has a Formica type surface. Strip the paint off of the top of the table down to bare wood. Sand fairly smooth but leave the surface just a little rough for adhesion.

Select those items that you want to display such as pictures of planes and trucks from a magazine for a boys room or flowers and kittens for a girls room. Perhaps select family pictures that have a special meaning or even ribbons won at school activities. Newspaper clippings mentioning the person that the collage is being made for is always a nice touch. Arrange these items on the surface of the table in a way that is eye appealing to you. Consider not keeping the items square. Take some of the items and cut the edges into irregular patterns. Cut a face out in a circle or oval. Tear some of the pictures to leave ragged edges. Whatever.

Once you have decided on a finished layout pick each item off the table one at a time, coat the back with spray adhesive and press back down on the table top. After all of the items have been glued allow the table top to cure for at least twenty four hours. Now you are ready to apply a surface finish to protect these memories. The best surface that can be put down is a product known as Liquid Glass. It is a two part crystal clear epoxy which is also used on bar and counter tops. Apply this finish according to manufacturers instructions and after setting up you will have a wonderful table geared for someone specific that will be enjoyed for a long time.


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    • vibesites profile image

      vibesites 4 years ago from United States

      Hmmmm I could put my Instagram pictures to great use! Nice concept. Thanks for sharing. :)

    • Movie Master profile image

      Movie Master 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      This sounds like a great project, I didn't know you could get a liquid glass, I would imagine you could create something looking really professional!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Awesome project idea!