What is decoupage?
You have probably heard the word “decoupage” before. It comes from the French verb “découper”, meaning “to cut out”. Decoupage is a way of decorating various objects and is the perfect opportunity to give an old jewelry box a new look or bring an outdated vase with its ornaments peeled off back to life. In the basic sense, you glue the customized decoupage paper of choice to a specifically prepared surface and create a look that is unique, personalized and amicable to you. Here are the basic steps you need to take while decorating any object and further on we will discuss how to apply them to accessories specifically:
- Once you select an item you wish to decorate, make sure the surface is clean, smooth, does not have dust on it;
- Select pictures and cut them out first using scissors and then a craft knife for precision. Color any white edges with a crayon that matches either the background or the picture;
- Arrange the pictures carefully before gluing them to the surface;
- When you glue them, make sure to even out the wrinkles. Do it carefully, with a barely wet sponge, to avoid soaking or ripping thin decoupage paper;
- Varnish the surface. Allow the varnish to dry carefully between each layer. Depending on the thickness of the paper, you might need anywhere between a couple and a dozen layers to make the surface durable. Wipe away the dust between every varnish to avoid bumpy surface.
These steps can be followed to turn any boring object into a fun, playful or elegant accent of the house. However, this technique is also commonly used while making jewelry.
Decoupage and accessories
Making jewelry using decoupage can be as easy or as difficult as you want it to be. One way of doing it is buying ready-made shapes that you wish to turn into earrings or a necklace and simply gluing pictures to it. However, this way you cannot claim that you have made the accessories yourself as half of the job has already been done for you. If you want to truly discover the beauty of arts and crafts when it comes to jewelry making with decoupage, consider taking these steps. First, decide what surface you want. If you wish to make long-lasting accessories that can endure various situations, you might want to learn how to make shapes out of wood or other similar materials. However, understandably this might not be a viable option for many. Modelling clay is a great alternative to that. Choose polymer clay as it dries into semi-durable and solid shapes. You can use various tools and forms to achieve any shape or form you want. Depending on what kind of jewelry you are making, create a small hole somewhere before the shape gets dry so that you can hang it in some way. Then cover it in the paper of your choice and let it dry.
You should have numerous chains, hooks and other elements to turn your decoupaged form into an actual piece of jewelry. Choose them carefully so that they are not relatively too big or, vice versa, not large enough to support the clay. Bend them, attach them, and voila, a beautiful pair of earrings you have made from scratch!