We haven’t made any coasters yet, have we?
A couple of years ago I bought 6 of them and I kept them stored in my cupboard ever since. I even forgot that I actually had them.
Needless to say that my “sous-verres” (i.e. under the glass, in French) were longing for the moment to be transformed! And I finally found the time to work on them!
So here’s what I did.
I started by applying an image on mats. When I thought that I was done, I kept on experimenting while adding effects and applying additional techniques.
In the end, I attached gold leaf, and to make it even more impressive, I finalized my object with an amazing crackle effect!
If you ask me, they look like a piece of art. The result exceeded my expectations!
They now have a vintage effect that suits the coasters. They are perfect for any decoration you might have in mind no matter if it’s a bedroom, living room or kitchen.
Although they look awesome, the truth is that it took a bit longer than it seems. Though I did enjoy every single step!
Let’s get started and find out what materials and tools we’ll need for this tutorial.
The basic materials we will need are the following:
- Printed Image
- Transfer Glue
- Gold Leaf Kit
- Crackle of one component
- Wood glue
- Oil colors
- Water based Varnish
- Varnish for oil paintings
Our tools will be the below:
- Different types of brushes
- A small sponge
- 1 small plastic cup filled with water in order to wet our brushes
3,2,1….! Let’s get to it!!!
How to create coasters with image transfer and crackle effect step by step
A few tips before we begin with the steps
- The image that you’ll apply on the coasters need to be printed by a laser printer. This way the ink won’t fade away.
- You can find various images on the internet and print them out. Alternatively, you can find all kind of images in special stores that provide decoupage material. In case you find an image on the internet, keep in mind that it should have high resolution.
- To apply the image on the coaster, you can use the special transport gel, that is specifically made for this purpose. Alternatively, you can use diluted wood glue. Personally, I’ve used both methods in the past and the result was equally good.
- If you decide to make an object crackled, like I did, you can use any varnish of your preference for the finishing, except for water based varnish. Water based varnish will damage your crackle.
First thing I want to do is to cut out the paper at the preferred shape.
Since I’m going to work on round coasters I cut the paper accordingly in circular shape.
I apply and spread a bit of wood glue on all my images where the pattern’s side is (once I’ve already diluted the glue, if it’s thick). This way, the paper becomes more resistant. Once I finish, I let them dry.
I spread wood glue on the coasters and then I let them all dry well.
Once they are dry, I apply glue on the image carefully but only on the side of the pattern.
A word of caution! The glue should be applied on the entire surface! Otherwise, we might mess up the pattern on the next step.
Before my image gets dry, I flip it right away and attach it carefully on the coaster with the side of the pattern facing down.
Once the coaster and the image are glued together, I repeat the same procedure for every coaster.
To make sure that the images and the coasters are glued together well enough, I press the image gently with my fingers so no blisters appear. I let everything dry well for 24 hours.
The glue should be dry by now and it’s time to proceed to the next step.
I soak a sponge in a bit of water and then carefully touch the back side of the image of each coaster. The paper needs to get a bit wet and then I rub my finger the surface of the paper gently.
You’ll notice that the paper slowly goes away. I repeat the same process until the entire image is revealed. Try to be as gentle as possible so that you don’t scrape the image.
I follow the same procedure for the rest of the coasters.
Step 4 (you can skip this step if you had no problems with the image.)
If there’s a chance that you scraped part of the images during the previous step, there’s no reason to worry. I’ll show you how you can mask it with gold leaf.
First thing you want to do is take a thin brush and spread the special glue for gold leaf on the spots that you want to cover.
Make sure that you don’t put too much glue because once you apply the gold leaf, there’s no way you can take it off anymore.
If you choose to apply gold leaf on a larger surface, feel free to use a thicker brush for applying the glue.
When you’re done, let the glue dry for approximately 15 minutes.
Next, I place the gold leaf on the coaster.
Hold the gold leaf very carefully because it’s fairly thin and it’s easy to make a mistake here.
I apply a bit of pressure on the gold leaf, on the spots where there’s glue underneath.
Then, I use a small piece of cotton -or cotton pad, to rub the gold leaf smoothly and I remove any unwanted pieces.
Tip: Don’t throw the remaining pieces of gold leaf since you can store them for future use.
I repeat the same procedure for the rest of the coasters.
When everything is applied properly, I take one final look and see if I like it the result.
If the gold color seems too strong for your taste, you can rub the surface with your finger.
As you’ll see from the pictures, I removed the excess gold leaf so that I give the coasters a more vintage look.
Next, I paint, the spots where I removed the gold leaf with turquoise color (special for wood). I use the same color to paint the back side of the coasters. At this point I stop adding any other colors.
I decided that the addition of colors and gold leaf wasn’t enough, I decided to add a crackle effect.
I begin by painting the surface of the coaster with water based varnish and let it dry.
Once it’s dry, I pass a thick layer of one component crackle and leave it for at least a day to dry completely.
The next day, you’ll notice that some cracks made their appearance on the surface of the object.
That’s great! This means that the crackle is now ready!
It’s time to fill in the cracks with patina or oil colors to highlight the crackle effect.
I put the desired oil color or patina on a small piece of cotton. With circular motion and a bit of pressure, I fill in the gaps.
In case you accidentally applied more color than you wanted, soak a small piece of cotton with turpentine and make gentle strokes on the excess paint. Most of the color goes away and you’re left with the color in the gaps.
Mission accomplished! The coasters are ready.
One last thing I want to do is spread 2 or 3 layers of varnish (no water varnish) so that they become time and water resistant.
I’ll enjoy my well deserved coffee now and place it on my my vintage coffee mat.
If you want to take it one step further, you can tie the coasters with twine. You’ll now have a beautiful gift ready to be offered to your beloved ones.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial as much as I did! Good luck to everyone! I am looking forward to seeing your objects!
For any further questions, don’t hesitate to leave your comment below!