Inside: A collection of fantastic decoupage craft ideas on various surfaces with different materials and some top tips.
I’ll let you into a secret, one of the easiest ways to wow someone with your upcycles and crafts is with decoupage!
I know it’s often said how amazingly something can be transformed with just a lick of paint (especially furniture), but that is nothing compared to a bit of decoupage.
Decoupage offers a unique look and texture you can’t consistently achieve with just paint. With decoupage, you can create intricate designs and patterns using different types of paper or fabric. Plus, you can use decoupage to add depth and dimension to a piece that you might not be able to achieve with just paint alone.
Another benefit of decoupage is it’s a great way to repurpose and upcycle old objects.
Maybe you have an old wooden box that’s a bit beat up but still has good bones. Decoupaging it with some pretty paper can transform it into a beautiful decorative piece you’ll want to display proudly.
And because decoupage is relatively easy and inexpensive, it’s a great way to refresh an old item without breaking the bank.
Decoupage is worth trying if you’re looking for a fun and creative way to give new life to an old object and get the wow factor!
What Surfaces Can You Decoupage?
Decoupage is a fun and creative crafting technique that involves decorating surfaces with layers of paper or fabric. It’s like collaging but with a bit more finesse.
The possibilities are endless! You can decoupage on just about any surface that can be painted or covered with adhesive. Some popular decoupage ideas include
- Wooden boxes & wood slices
- Picture frames
- Glass bottles & jars
- Tin cans
- Plastic pots
- Leather purses/bags and shoes
What Materials Can You Use For Decoupage?
There are a variety of other materials you can use for decoupage. Choosing thin and flexible materials to conform to your surface without wrinkling or tearing is key.
You can buy printed paper specially designed for decoupage, but this option is expensive. I prefer to use other paper and repurposed materials listed below:
- Paper: The most important thing is to choose a thin and flexible paper to conform to the curves and contours of your surface without wrinkling or tearing. I keep old gift wrap and road maps for decoupage.
- Fabric: Like paper, thin and flexible materials can be used for decoupage. You can create a beautiful patchwork effect by layering different fabrics onto your surface.
- Paper napkins are a very popular choice for decoupage. They are thin, flexible, affordable, and come in lots of beautiful patterns and designs.
- Photos: If you have some favourite images you’d like to display creatively, consider using them for decoupage. Print them on thin paper or use photo paper specifically designed for decoupage.
- Magazine clippings: Another fun option for your decoupage. You can create a collage effect by layering different images and colours onto your surface.
- Tissue paper: you can also use them to create a stained glass effect by layering them onto glass surfaces with decoupage glue.
- Old book pages and music sheets – paper from old dictionaries and encyclopedias works well as this is often much thinner than standard book paper.
- Natural materials: such as leaves, flowers, and feathers for decoupage. Press them flat and dry them out before applying them to your surface.
Have fun experimenting with different materials, and see what creative ideas you can come up with!
Cool Decoupage Craft Ideas For Adults
Whether it's a large furniture upcycle, a vase or a small shell, you'll find a decoupage idea you'll want to try! Most surfaces are covered from glass to wood with materials from fabric to paper and napkins. All with tutorials to ensure successful decoupaging.
How To Make A Beautiful Decoupage Vase With Fabric
Fabric decoupage works well on curved surfaces as it is less likely to crease and wrinkle than paper. This can be seen with this stunning Kaffe Fassett vase.
A Beautiful Decoupage Shell Dish
The tutorial also shows you how to print beautiful vintage patterns and illustrations onto tissue paper for decoupage. The delicate printed papers can decoupage scallop shells to make pretty trinket dishes. They would make lovely handmade gifts.
How To Make Cool Marimekko Plastic Bottle Planters
Like many everyday household waste materials, plastic bottles are perfect for decoupage crafts. Like these Marimekko self-watering herb planters. An example of a paper napkin decoupage.
DIY Liberty Fabric Decoupage Clay Dish Tutorial
A beautiful fabric decoupage of clay dishes with Liberty fabric scraps.
Unique Vintage Image Decoupage Placemats
This is an Anthropologie knock-off. Paint some old placemats and then decoupage them with gorgeous botanical and zoological vintage images. The post includes free vintage images.
Antique World Map Decoupage Candles
LED candles may be convenient, but they are plain and boring. So why not transform them with some paper decoupage, like these antique world map candles?
How To Make Postage Stamp Decoupage Jar Tea Lights
Old postage stamps are another fun material to decorate with. Upcycle yoghurt jars with old stamps make these colourful tealights.
DIY Tile Planters
Printable art nouveau patterns were used to make these stunning tile planters. There are many designs to choose from, all in the Public Domain.
Jar Makeover with Coloring Books
An example of paper decoupage using adult colouring pages. Colour the pages in before decoupage for a brighter finish.
An Easy Mod Podge Fabric Mirror Frame
Fabric mirror frames are on trend now and are so easy to replicate at home with fabric decoupage. This beautiful patchwork mirror frame is made with upholstery fabric scraps.
Adult Coloring Book Dishes DIY
Cut flowers and other motives from adult colouring pages and decoupage them onto plates. The reverse would also look great with coloured pages stuck onto white plates.
DIY Comic Book Frame
A paper decoupage craft using pages from old comic books. Great for making gifts for superhero fans, like with this fun photo frame. This would also make a great Father's day present.
Easy Blue and White Decoupage Chargers
Another one for the dining table, decoupage the plate chargers to match your decor. These were once plain IKEA bamboo chargers decoupaged for a fresh spring look— a paper napkin decoupage idea.
Anthropologie Knobs Knockoff
Turn any plain wooden drawer knob into a designer one with some simple decoupage. Choose patterns and colours to match your furniture-a paper napkin decoupage.
Decoupage DIY Bud Vases
An upcycled tutorial on repurposing small yoghurt bottles, such as Yakult bottles, into cute Marimekko mini flower bud vases using paper napkins.
Designer Desk Caddy
To make designer pen pots, paint and cover tin cans with decorative paper, such as free wallpaper samples or leftover gift wrap.
Decoupaged Blue and White Chinoiserie Oyster Shells
Another fabulous Chinoiserie decoupage, this time on oyster shells. Use them as trinket dishes or just as beautiful decorative items- a paper napkin decoupage project.
Mod Podge Picture Frame in Five Steps!
Update old photo frames with pretty fabric or patterned paper. A decoupaged frame would make a lovely handmade gift.
Decoupage Coasters with Wood Slices and Napkins
Make gorgeous nature-themed coasters for your coffee table with floral paper napkins and wood slices.
Decoupage Gift Box DIY
I love how the scrapbook paper flowers have been edged in gold paint after being glued to the wooden box. The whole project has a lovely floral vintage vibe.
Fall Napkin Luminaries
Paper napkins are thin enough so the light will shine through when decoupaged onto the glass jars. Use suitably themed paper napkins to make these for any holiday or season.
Colorful Magnetic Clothespins
Even the most mundane everyday objects, like these clothes pegs, can be turned into something beautiful with decoupage.
DIY File Cabinet Makeover the Easy Way!
Decoupage has turned an ugly pine filling-cabinet into a pretty furniture piece.
How To Make A Brilliant Vintage Map Suitcase Upcycle
The vintage world map on this old suitcase looks fantastic. On Pillarboxblue, there are many vintage maps you can print for free for decoupage projects and crafts.
DIY Decoupage Floral Bag
Customize a simple handbag with a brilliant floral print. Cut large floral motives out of cotton fabric and decoupage them to design a one-of-a-kind bag!
Fabric Decoupage Sneakers
These sneakers were ready for the bin before they were given a new lease of life with some clever fabric decoupage. I have some beautiful fabric scraps and now want to try this on my old shoes.
Comic Book Can Storage
Old comics are good to decoupage with. They can be used to make fun of upcycled storage like this upcycled coffee can—a fun project for a kid's room or superhero fans.
Easy Upcycled Decorative Decoupage Tin Can Planters
Paper napkins are so delicate you can still see the ridges in tin cans when you decoupage them. This gives the illusion of the images being printed onto the cans, like with these stunning planters.
DIY Floral Decoupage Storage Box
Cut images such as flowers out of gift wrap and decoupage them onto old shoe boxes to make some stylish storage.
Decoupage Bench Upcycle
More oversized items can be decoupaged with paper napkins with excellent results. Amazingly it only took about half a packet of paper napkins to cover an entire garden bench. If you cover the finished decoupage project with an outdoor varnish, you can leave it to the elements, and it will be fine.
Map Mason Jar Bank For A Wonderful Gift
Make these travel-themed money boxes for those with wanderlust. There are many map paper napkins designs for this decoupage project.
How to Decoupage Flower Pots with Stunning Results
Another fun decoupage craft for the garden. Upcycle plastic or terracotta plant pots with paper napkins to match your decor. Cotton fabrics also work well when decoupaging pots.
Wall Art Made From A Table Top
This project was fun; an old wooden table top was decoupaged with designer paper napkins to make impressive art. This has been hanging on the wall in my office for years, and I still haven't tired of it.
How to Decoupage Furniture With Fabric for an “Upholstered” Look!
It's so simple to transform a wood chair into a fun, funky desk chair using beautiful fabric.
Did you know you can even decoupage sneakers with paper napkins? Use this technique to make some unique designer footwear like these Marimekko trainers.
Decoupage on Wood with Perfect Results
Specialist decoupage paper from the craft store made a wooden tissue box pretty.
DIY Decoupage Black Rose Pumpkin
You're best using paper napkins or fabric when decoupaging the curves and bumps of a pumpkin. I've never seen a fall decoration like this one; it's unique.
World Map Necklace From Eyeglasses
Turn broken eyeglasses into keepsake necklaces with decoupaged maps. Use old road maps or cut maps out of old atlases.
How To Make A fun Dictionary Christmas Decoupage Baubles
Print vintage images onto book pages from an old dictionary and then use them to make unique Christmas baubles for the tree.
Fun and Unique Oriental Vase DIY flower pots
Print out these free images of original Ming vases and use them to upcycle tin can planters. The decoupage creates aTrompe-l'œil effect.
How To Make Still Life Flowers Decoupage Tray Table
Still-life flower paintings by the Dutch masters are decoupaged onto an old tray to make a glamorous mini table. This would make a great plant stand.
Decoupage Napkin Crates
What a great way to transform a wooden crate from meh to wow! I wouldn't mind having these pretty storage crates on show in my craft room.
IKEA Clock Hack With A World Map
Many things in IKEA are crying out to be made unique with some decoupage decoration. Like cheap clocks, this one has been covered in a world map.
How to Make a Map Table an IKEA Hack
Learn how to upcycle an old side table with a world map to give it a new look and make it a talking point!
Decoupage Baubles Decoration
An alternative way to display baubles is to put them in vases, like flowers. Decoupage polystyrene balls with designer paper napkins to create a unique decoration that looks great all year round and not just for Christmas.
Popsicle stick bracelets
Make some fun bracelets with decoupaged popsicle sticks. Choose patterns and colours to match your clothes.
Personalized Map Decoupage Glass Tray
Old road maps are great to decoupage with. They can add meaning and interest to a project. By using a map of somewhere special, this trinket tray becomes a lovely personalised gift.
DIY Decoupage Ring Cones
Traditional Japanese washi origami paper would work wonderfully with this decoupage craft. You can make the cones out of cardboard packaging to save money.
Cute Upcycled Easter Baskets From Tin Cans
All you need is the colourful patterned gift wrap paper to transfer old tin cans, and garden wire into fun Easter hunt buckets.
Tissue Papaer Decoupage Letters
Make ombre letters with an exciting decoupage technique; using thin tissue paper rounds.
DIY Halloween Silhouette Plates
What a fun and stylish way to decorate for Halloween with these decoupaged plates! The spooky images are free to print.
Blue Porcelain Craft Pumpkin and Free Printable
Make your fall pumpkin look like blue and white porcelain with some beautiful decoupage. The tutorial includes the printable flower image.
Decoupaged Napkin Earrings
Pick up some simple plastic hooped earrings and update them with paper napkins. This craft would work well with bangles and chunky necklaces too.
Decoupage Lunch Box Stationery Kit
The floral images used for this decoupage are gorgeous, making this a beautiful craft. The lunch box is also a fun way to store stationery.
Simple and Brilliant Ikea Moppe Hack With Maps
IKEA Moppes are back in the store! Not only are they handy little storage drawers, but they come unfinished, begging to be decoupaged, like this one with maps.
Fun Decoupaged Rocks
These rocks are so pretty; they would make fun paperweights and lovely decorations, and it's another paper napkin decoupage idea.
Decoupage Easter Eggs
Instead of paintings eggs this Easter, how about decoupaging them? For this fun spring craft, you can use blown real eggs, plastic, wooden or even polystyrene eggs.
Check out these other easy adult craft ideas, and before you begin, ensure you have the crafting essentials.
A good source of vintage images and maps for your decoupage ideas is Pictureboxblue.co The images are in the Public Domain and include many stunning vintage botanicals and vintage art and patterns.
D. Lynette Leplat
Friday 17th of March 2023
So, so many inspiring, beautiful, creative ideas❤️❤️❤️
Friday 17th of March 2023
Thank you so much, glad you like the decoupage ideas.