Transforming Furniture with Decoupage: A Step-by-Step

Transforming Furniture with Decoupage: A Step-by-Step


Decoupage is a versatile and creative technique that allows you to transform plain furniture into works of art. This ancient art form involves decorating surfaces by layering paper cutouts with intricate designs, securing them with adhesive, and then finishing with a protective coating. Whether you're looking to revitalize an old piece of furniture or add a personal touch to new ones, decoupage offers a world of possibilities. In this guide, I‘ll take you through the process of decoupaging furniture, step by step.

Materials You'll Need:

  1. Furniture piece
  2. Decoupage paper - Mint By Michelle (this can also be napkins, tissue paper, wrapping paper, etc.)
  3. Decoupage glue or medium of your choice
  4. Paintbrushes (one for applying glue and one for smoothing)
  5. Scissors
  6. Sandpaper (if needed)
  7. Acrylic paint (optional for base coat but I recommend a light base to enhance the colours of the paper)
  8. Clear sealer or varnish
  9. Water and a clean cloth

Step-by-Step Guide:

Step 1: Prepare Your Furniture

Start by preparing the furniture surface. If your piece has a glossy finish, it's a good idea to lightly sand it to create a better surface for the adhesive to grip onto. Clean the surface thoroughly to remove any dust or grime.

Step 2: Choose Your Design

Select the decoupage paper you want to use for your project. Tissue paper styles can be torn around the edges, thicker styles will need to cover the whole project as the thicker edges will make it difficult to blend in. Consider the overall theme and aesthetic you want to achieve.

Step 3: Cut Out Your Designs

You can use scissors to create precise shapes or tear the paper for a more rustic look. (Tearing usually makes for easier blending of the edges ) Experiment with different shapes and sizes to create a visually appealing arrangement.

Step 4: Apply Decoupage Glue

Using a paintbrush, apply a thin layer of decoupage glue or chosen medium to the furniture. Place the paper on the furniture surface in your desired arrangement. Press down gently to remove any air bubbles and ensure proper adhesion. 

Step 5: Smooth and Seal

Use a clean, dry paintbrush to smooth out the paper, starting from the centre and working your way outward. I sometimes use a screwed up piece of cling film. This will help remove any wrinkles or bubbles. Allow the glue to dry completely.

Step 6: Blending the edges (Optional)

If you have more space to fill in on your project piece you can do this with paint. Gently blend similar colours around the edge and slightly over the edge of the paper design to feather in.

Step 7: Apply a Protective Coat

Once your design is in place and completely dry, sand any edges you may have (use a sand black at a 45 degree angle and sand in a downward motion away from the decoupage paper so you don’t lift the edges. Apply a clear sealer or varnish over the entire surface. This step not only protects the paper but also gives your furniture a polished finish. Apply the sealer in thin, even coats, allowing each coat to dry before applying the next.

Step 8: Final Touches

Inspect your decoupage design to ensure everything is securely adhered and the finish is to your liking. If desired, you can add additional embellishments, such as painted details or decorative hardware, to enhance the overall look.


Decoupage offers a fantastic way to breathe new life into your furniture while expressing your creativity. With just a few basic materials and a bit of patience, you can transform ordinary furniture into extraordinary pieces of functional art. Whether you're an experienced crafter or a beginner, decoupage is a technique that anyone can master to create stunning and personalized furniture pieces that will be admired for years to come. So, gather your materials and get ready to embark on a journey of artistic expression through the world of decoupage!


I can highly recommend Mint By Michelle Decoupage Papers, You can buy all the designs here

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