March 5, 2011

Decoupaged Plate Tutorial

A few local moms and I get together monthly for a Mom's Night Out, and tonight I'll be hosting.  We usually play bingo or do something else that is relaxing and conducive to chatting, and tonight I thought we'd decoupage some glass plates for either hanging on the wall or serving cookies or other dry foods.
This is a really cheap and simple project, and you could either just do a decorative pattern, like I did, or personalize it with letters, photographs, or other ephemera like ticket stubs or quotations.  The only things you need to be aware of are 1.) that the paper is not too thick, and 2.) that the ink on the images is not smudge-able, as in things that come from an ink-jet printer.  I recommend making photocopies of any questionable items.
You'll be decoupaging on the back side of the plate, so technically you could still serve food on it, since no glue or paper will be on the front. However, you don't want to put the plate in the dishwasher, since the paper will obviously come off.  You can just wipe the front surface clean after use.

Here's what you'll need:
  • A cheap glass plate with minimal or no ridges or bumps (mine was $1 at the dollar store)
  • Decorative paper
  • Scissors
  • Mod-Podge or other decoupaging glue (you could use 3 parts water to 1 part Elmer's glue too)
  • A foam brush
Clean the back of your plate with glass cleaner, making sure to remove any stickers.

Decide on an idea of the design you'd like to create, such as abstract, pr quilt-like patterns, or even a simple animal or vegetable.  Checking out clip art online can be helpful in finding a silhouette or simple image that you'd like to copy.  Next, select coordinating papers that you'd like to use.

Prepare your papers by cutting out your designs.  Because I decided on doing a sunburst pattern, I cut my paper into thin strips, using a paper cutter.
 The pieces I used here were all 1/2" wide.
Lay out your pattern before hand, especially if you're doing a representational design like an animal.  I didn't do this with mine, because it was easier to just add strips as I went.  You'll most likely be layering the design, so begin with the pieces that are in the foreground. In my case, I placed my center circle down first, then layered the strips behind it.
Paint a light layer of Mod Podge on the back of your plate, and also on the front of your first piece of paper.  Stick them together, smoothing out any bubbles as they occur.
Continue painting on the Mod Podge and layering your papers, smoothing out bumps as you go.
When you're finished, fill in any small holes you might have, where you can still see the glass.
When your plate is completely dry, add another layer of Mod Podge over the entire backside of the plate, sealing up all the paper.  Trim all the edges with scissors or an X-Acto knife, and if you wish, you could color the plate's edge with a gold or silver paint marker.
(please ignore the visible glue--I was impatient to get a photo before the underside dried!  But trust me, it will dry clear).
Hang with a plate hanger and enjoy!  This project is a bit addictive, and I could see having an entire wall of coordinating plates of all shapes and sizes.


  1. That is such a cute idea! It would make a great project with the kiddos. They could pick their papers and hang the dish in their bedrooms!

  2. Great idea! This would be so fun for a luncheon craft that I am hoping to have soon. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I love it! What a great idea ;)

  4. I love this. It would make a great personalized gift!

  5. Very nice......looks like something from a fancy boutique.

  6. I love this idea - I usually use fabric for plates so I like this variation a lot. I also posted your tutorial and a link to your website on my blog today. I posted some decoupage plate projects that I really liked and yours was on of them. Thank you for sharing :)


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