How to Decoupage: Adding a Creative Touch

Picture of decoupage from Victoria Magazine

Decoupage can be as simple or as intricate as the artist behind the craft. As Leslie Linsley, the decoupage artist profiled in the July/August 2009 issue of Victoria, explains, “Decoupage is an authentic craft that is easy to learn. Once the technique is mastered, you can really get creative.” Spend a calm afternoon allowing your imagination to soar by creating classic art.

What you will need:

First, you will need something to decoupage a picture onto, which can be just about anything: furniture, photo albums, frames, boxes, vases, or mirrors. Next, let your ideas come alive with inspiring images. Choose beautiful photos or graphics cut from magazines, catalogs, or books. Finally, gather a few supplies to carry out your project:

  • Decoupage medium, which acts as an adhesive and can be found in your local crafts store.
  • Brayer, a miniature rolling pin designed to help remove wrinkles and excess glue.
  • Foam or small paintbrush, used to apply and spread decoupage medium.
  • Craft knife, used to cut out detailed pictures.
  • Sealer, which acts as a final coat. Try using polyurethane, acrylic spray, or an extra coat of your decoupage medium.

Decoupage image from Victoria Magazine

Follow these simple steps to create your very own decoupage:

  1. Clean the surface on which you plan to decoupage.
  2. Delicately cut out and arrange pictures. Get creative by overlapping and adding accents of solid-color papers.
  3. Completely coat the back of the picture with your decoupage medium, as well as a layer of the adhesive where you are applying the picture.
  4. Affix the picture onto the adhesive. Use your finger or the brayer to gently push down the picture (for a large picture, start from the center and work your way out), and remove any wrinkles.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until all pictures are applied. Allow the adhesive to dry.
  6. Add coats of the decoupage medium, or use another sealer (see “What you will need,” above) until you achieve the desired results. Continue applying coats until the edges of pictures are smooth.

Decoupage image from Victoria Magazine

For more about Leslie Linsley and her enduring art, see “A Timeless Art Form,” on page 80 of the July/August 2009 issue of Victoria magazine.

July/August 2009 Victoria Magazine cover

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