Rethinking Holidays: Revolution Gift Idea #6 | Confessions of a Stay-At-Home Mom

November 18, 2009

Rethinking Holidays: Revolution Gift Idea #6

Rethinking Holidays

This project rates a 4 on the Craftiness Scale: not too difficult, but will require some creativity on your part.

I've come to embrace this method of crafting. I believe in the 70's, it had a bad reputation. I find it to be personal, economical and (if done correctly) stylish.

Revolution Gift Idea #6:

Yes, I am talking about a more mature version of gluing stuff to...well...stuff. Yes, I know it's old-school. Yes, I know it's simple.

But, friends, Decoupage is more than just "glue." It is a wonderful outlet for creativity, and SIMPLE is GOOD in this case! We want simple but beautiful gifts. Decoupaging is also an economical way to make a bunch of gifts.

For those who are out of the loop, to "decoupage" means to glue (with a decoupage medium, like Mod Podge) paper or fabric items to a non-porous surface (wood or glass). Decoupaging can be as intricate or simple as you'd like it to be. I have made very nice gifts in 30-60 minutes. If you are particularly creative, decoupaging can go on for hours!

Supplies needed:

1. Items to decoupage (see below for ideas) - made of wood or glass ($5+ depending on the project)

2. Decoupage Medium, such as Mod Podge ($10 [for a quart] -$25 [for a gallon] will last you LOTS of projects)

3. Paper decorations OR fabric to decoupage with (cut from magazines, your personal photographs, wrapping paper, newspaper, or speciality/scrapbooking/decorative paper found at any craft store. Grab a couple of leftover fabric pieces from your fabric shop. Really, anything you like and can work with that is made out of paper or fabric)

4. Paintbrush dedicated to decoupaging, as it will not be able to be used for painting after being used to glue things ($2-$5)

5. A protected work space - table or counter covered with a drop cloth/old towels/newspaper

How to:

~ Spend some time cutting out the paper or fabric you wish you decoupage onto your project. Let your mind go wild: projects can be all photographs, others can be words cut out of magazines, or different pictures of flowers.

~ Brush the decoupage medium over your project (for example, a wooden or plastic photo frame).

~ Place your cut-out items over all glue-covered surfaces. The idea would be to have no surface showing, but be completely covered with paper/fabric.

~ Brush another coat of decoupage medium over the papered surface.

~ Let dry for several hours.

You can see how this could easily take less than an hour, which is great when you have lots of gifts to get through! Ideally, you can decoupage several items at once. The jar or jug of Mod Podge you purchase will easily get you through several projects, potentially all of your holiday gifts! If you shop the sales at local craft stores or go garage sale hopping, you can find lots of great potential items for decoupaging for cheap. These gifts can be really personal, but price-friendly. The perfect handcrafted holiday gift!

Need some ideas to get you started? Here are a few:

1. Photo Frames: whether you buy them new, use existing ones from your home, or purchase them at second-hand stores or garage sales, these make great gifts. Cut out words from magazines that remind you of the recipient ("fun" "beautiful" "frugal" "sexy" "vacations") and decoupage the entire frame. Stick a photo of you and your friend/family member in the frame. If words are not your thing, find different images of flowers to glue, or old photos.

2. Shelving: Grab a wooden shelf from your local craft store to decoupage. I am actually using this idea for my Hubby (he never reads this blog, so I feel safe sharing this). To get more info on this Guy Gift, email me and I will let you know my specific plans. If your Hubby (or Dad or guy friend or whatever guy is in your life) enjoys beer/homebrewing, than this idea is for you - so get in touch with me!

3. Furniture: WHAT? Yes! Find an old chair at Good Will or a garage sale, and decoupage it back into shape! Have an old desk that looks...old? Renew it with decoupage! Here's a big challenge: decoupage an old rocker for a nursery. WHOA!

4. Lamps: I've never tried this, but it sounds SO COOL. Get an old lamp (doesn't matter if it's "pretty" or not, but make sure you like the shape of the lamp base). Decoupage paper-items on it, and find a nice shade to accompany it!

5. Rocks: Sure, why not? This simple project could make for a nice center-piece or household decorations.

6. Memory or Photo Box: Take an old box or bin that has a lid, and decoupage both. Give to someone who enjoys keeping photos or old memorabilia. A great (and stylish) way to organize their items.

7. Water Pitcher or Wine Decanter: This could be a really hip gift for those who entertain a lot. Pitchers and decanters can be found at Walmart, Target and Bed Bath and Beyond. If you can get one on sale, this could be a fun project!

8. Serving Tray: it can remain decorative or be used for service. This is a fun gift to give! Decoupage pictures for the grandparents, or fun magazine images for your Hostess with the Mostess friend!

9. Flower Vases

Some great websites and blogs by Awesome Creative Decoupagers:

Visual Inspiration (taken from Mod Podge Rocks blog):

Are you starting to see that just about anything can be decoupaged? The only limitation? Your creativity! I can't wait to head out and get my jug of Mod Podge, and you can bet this is definitely on my list of Must Give Gifts (that don't hurt my wallet) this year!

For a fun afternoon or evening: have a Decoupage Girls Night before the holidays hit! Several of your good gal pals + Decoupaging Supplies + cookies/coffee/ice cream + Chick Flick = SO FUN! A night of fun, while being super Holiday Productive. Anyone in for having one with me?!?!

Do you have great Decoupage project ideas? Send them my way so I can post them for everyone! Send pictures if you have them!

Check back next Wednesday for Revolution Gift Idea #7
(and keep sending me yours!)


  1. Ahhh! Steph this is super cute! I always thought that decoupage walked that awkward line between just enough pictures and WOW WHAT A CLUTTER OF IMAGES! But the examples you show here are great and still look somewhat simple but with flair! Maybe this is the encouragement I need to return to decoupage! Hope you are doing well, thanks for the tip!

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