Decoupage Do-s and Don’t-s

Last summer when I was looking for a desk for my apartment, I could not find anything I liked. I wanted something practical but not expensive. My mom and I searched for an entire day and found nothing in my budget at places like Target, Walmart, and HomeGoods. On our way home we decided to stop at Savers “just to look” even though we were not hopeful. Whaddaya know… this $2.99 desk was basically put there just for me. I knew right away that I would create an epic collage on the desk top. It was my first experience with decoupage and here is what I learned:






DO: Properly clean all of the surfaces you plan on decoupaging

DO: Lay out your desired design before making anything permanent and take a picture to reference the layout later

Do: Use Mod Podge – it is super simple and it is a great way to adhere your design to your surface. I suggest gluing everything down first and then applying several coats of Mod Podge. I also suggest using the gloss coat instead of the matte so your surface has a shine to it

DON’T: Let your masterpiece dry in direct sunlight. I put a lot of movie ticket stubs on my desktop and I realized some of the text faded off the stubs when I let my desk dry in the sun

DO: Use thicker paper or card stock for your designs. The stuff printed on thicker paper like all my movie, football, and concert tickets held up the best

DON’T: Use regular printer paper. I printed maps of the four places I consider home on regular paper. I wish I had printed them on card stock to avoid air bubbles and gaps caused by the moisture of the Mod Podge.

DO: Use a resistant clear coat spray after you completely finish decorating your surface. This protects your desktop from water and allows it to be cleaned without being damaged



Despite some of the bubbled surfaces, I love my desk. It cost me less than $10 for the desk and mod podge – everything else I had at home.  The best part of the desk is that it is me. It is filled with movie stubs and concert tickets I have been saving for years and did not know what to do with. It is personal and fun and unique. I am so glad I chose to design a desk myself instead of buying one that hundreds of other people have – that would be the least me thing ever.

DON’T: Be afraid to decoupage!

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