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Decoupage on a Tin
Items NeededDecoupage Tin
  • Tin (blank)
  • Methylated spirits or vinegar water mixed - 50/50 to clean tin
  • Craft Paint of your choice of colour or two to three contrasting colours (if sponging as in picture)
  • Piece of sea sponge for first coat and sponge effects
  • Podge (used as a glue and sealer)
  • Waterbased-Varnish (Gloss or Dead Flat)
  • Soft flat paint brush medium or flat foam applicator
  • Serviette images
  • Gold Pen for outlining edge of lid (optional)
  • Small sharp pair of scissors
  • Hair dryer (optional in cold wet weather)
  • Wash tin either in warm soapy water, or use Methylated spirits or vinegar water to clean tin
  • Apply the first coat of craft paint with sponge by sponging on. For the second coat onwards use the foam applicator or paint brush and DRY between coats– repeat as many times until the tin surface does not show through about 3-4 coats) Alternatively use contrasting colours to songe for effect
  • Cut out or tear out the designs from the serviette or neatly cut out your motif/s from the paper.
  • Separate the layers of serviette, leaving only the single top layer to use.
  • Position the serviette or paper cut outs and use a brush or your finger dipped in Podge – Place cut-out onto dry surface and gently brush Podge from the middle outwards.
  • DRY
  • Seal with two layers of Podge
  • Finish off with two layers of water-based varnish
  • If required, now is the time to edge with the Gold Pen
  • If a shinier surface is required, further layers of water-based or oil-based varnish can be applied

DO NOT SAND TIN as the manufacturer’s rust-proofing layer will be removed, causing rust spots caused by the water in the craft paint to appear after a day or two. A metal primer coat as an option could be painted on before applying craft paint.

PREPAINTED (USED COFFEE TINS, BISCUIT TINS ETC) – wash with soapy water, rinse, sand lightly with 600 grit sandpaper and use a coat of metal primer before craft paint.


Tina Schilling is a freelance craft teacher specialising in decoupage. Would you like to attend a class? Click here to see her page for more information.

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