Useful Tips on Decoupage

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1. Use a craft knife and not scissors, as it is a lot quicker and accurate

2. Practise under-cutting a technique where the craft knife is held at an angle and used to cut under the paper, this will held any harsh white edges.

3.  However if your piece you cut out has a really white edge, colour it in using a soft pointed pencil or water coloured pens to disguise it.

4. Number all the pieces you cut out and using your shaping tool and shaping mat only shape the final layer of your picture.

5. Apply silicone glue like you would apply icing on a cake, hold tube of glue 1mm above print, squeeze and gently pull away to require height.  Allow silicone glue to dry between layers.  Try not to show any silicone on your finished picture.

6. To prevent glue solidifying in nozzle, shape and insert matchstick or similar.

7.  Try to only use Decoupage silicone glue, as some bathroom sealant can produce only blobs all over your picture

8. When your craft knife starts pulling or ripping the paper then it's time to change your blade.

9. Varnish the top visual layer generously, after your have completed.  Make sure each piece is well supported by glue otherwise the paper may curl.

10.  Use a fine horsehair brush when applying coats of varnish to avoid bubbling.   Clean brush in thinners or nail polish remover, immediately after use.

11.  Do not leave the top off the varnish or it will thicken, if this does happen use thinners to restore consistency.

12.  Never hang your completed picture in direct sunlight, over the years the colours will fade and the varnish may start to crack.

c. Rob Jackson, Jacksons Mail Order (used with his permission)

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