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DIY: Image Transfer: Mother’s Day Edition!

Mother’s Day is right around the corner, and if you have yet to get your mom something, there is still possibly time for you to make something for her! Let’s face it, homemade gifts are more special since you put a little piece of yourself into it. At least, that’s how I see it. So today I’m going to show you how to make a nice photo transferred wooden plaque, which isn’t necessarily a Mother’s Day only kind of thing, but it can be depending on the imagery that you use. Like for the one I made I used a photo of me and my sisters from the last time we were all together.

Anyway, enough rambling, let’s get started!

You'll need: -a wood plaque  -some hanging hardware -a plastic card, like a gift card or whatever -gel medium -foam brushes -paint -a bowl of water -a sponge -polyurathane sealer - you can also use mod podge to seal it. -laser printed or a photocopied image, flipped
You’ll need:
-a wood plaque
-some hanging hardware
-a plastic card, like a gift card or whatever
-gel medium
-foam brushes
-paint
-a bowl of water
-a sponge
-polyurathane sealer – you can also use mod podge to seal it.
-laser printed or a photocopied image, flipped
Find the midpoint on the back of your wood plaque and attach your hanging hardware. The kind I'm using here comes with little nails to secure it in place.
Find the midpoint on the back of your wood plaque and attach your hanging hardware. The kind I’m using here comes with little nails to secure it in place.
This is gel medium, you can typically find it in that art section of the craft store with all of the other additives for paint.
This is gel medium, you can typically find it in that art section of the craft store with all of the other additives for paint.
Apply it to the plaque in an even layer. Make sure to get a good coating. You don't want it to be too thin or too thick.
Apply it to the plaque in an even layer. Make sure to get a good coating. You don’t want it to be too thin or too thick.
Carefully lay your printed image down, face down onto the wood.
Carefully lay your printed image down, face down onto the wood.
Run your card along the back of the image to make sure the image is completely smooth and touching all of the gel medium. If there are any bubbles or anything, the image wont transfer in that spot, so make sure you get rid of them! Let this dry overnight.
Run your card along the back of the image to make sure the image is completely smooth and touching all of the gel medium.
If there are any bubbles or anything, the image wont transfer in that spot, so make sure you get rid of them!
Let this dry overnight.
Use a sponge to dampen the paper. You can start to see the image starting to come through!
Use a sponge to dampen the paper. You can start to see the image starting to come through!
Use your fingers to start to rub the paper so it starts to peel off.
Use your fingers to start to rub the paper so it starts to peel off.
If you're brave enough you can use your sponge to help rub the paper off. This is really risky though because you can more easily rub the image off. You just need to be gentle and be patient. Keep rewetting and rubbing until the majority of the paper is removed. This is the part that gets a bit tedious. While it's wet it will look great, but when it dries you'll notice spots that still have paper bits on it. Just keep at it and you'll finally remove most of it.
If you’re brave enough you can use your sponge to help rub the paper off. This is really risky though because you can more easily rub the image off. You just need to be gentle and be patient.
Keep rewetting and rubbing until the majority of the paper is removed. This is the part that gets a bit tedious. While it’s wet it will look great, but when it dries you’ll notice spots that still have paper bits on it. Just keep at it and you’ll finally remove most of it.
You might notice you have some excess gel around the edges. If so, just use an xacto knife to cut it off.
You might notice you have some excess gel around the edges. If so, just use an xacto knife to cut it off.
When you've finally removed as much of the paper as you can stand, let it dry completely and then apply your sealer. I'm using a semi matte water based polyurathane, but you can also use something like mod podge. Set it aside to let it dry.
When you’ve finally removed as much of the paper as you can stand, let it dry completely and then apply your sealer. I’m using a semi matte water based polyurathane, but you can also use something like mod podge.
Set it aside to let it dry.
And finally, paint the edges with your paint! Here I'm using liquid gold leaf, my favorite!  Also, there was a gap that was about 1/4 inch wide gap on one side because the image was slightly too small, so I extended the edge of the paint up around the image, 1/4 of an inch on each side. Let it dry.
And finally, paint the edges with your paint! Here I’m using liquid gold leaf, my favorite!
Also, there was a gap that was about 1/4 inch wide gap on one side because the image was slightly too small, so I extended the edge of the paint up around the image, 1/4 of an inch on each side.
Let it dry.
Here it is, all ready to be packed up and sent to my mom!
Here it is, all ready to be packed up and sent to my mom!

 

I hope you enjoyed this weeks project! And to all the moms reading, Happy early Mother’s Day!

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