DIY Wood Transfer Christmas Ornaments

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This fun image transfer method is easy and extremely versatile. You can choose any image you wish to transfer, in color or black and white. It allows you to create very large pieces to display on your walls, or smaller pieces like these beautiful reindeer ornaments.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

These adorable ornaments can be customized and used as gift toppers for a personal touch.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Things You'll Need

  • Wood ornaments
  • Craft paint
  • Paintbrush
  • White printer paper, preferably lightweight
  • Printer 
  • Image to transfer
  • Scissors
  • Acrylic gel medium
  • Credit card or popsicle stick
  • Sponge
  • Dish or tray
  • Sealant or decoupage medium (optional)
(Image: Lucy Akins)

Tip

  • Laser printed images on lightweight printer paper work best for this transfer method.

Step 1

Paint the wood ornament and let it dry overnight. Print out the image you would like to apply to your ornament on regular or lightweight white paper. Cut and trim the image to the size of the ornament.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 2

Apply the acrylic gel medium with the paintbrush directly to your wood ornament, ensuring you cover the entire surface area evenly.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Tip

  • Apply gel medium evenly; not too thick, but not too thin.

While the gel is still wet, place the image (facing down) onto the wooden surface. Lightly press the image down with your fingers so that the paper sticks to the surface.

With a credit card or popsicle stick, lightly burnish the surface with smooth, even pressure. Set aside and allow to dry completely.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Tip

  • Make sure you burnish with steady pressure -- not so lightly that the gel doesn't adhere to the paper, but not so hard that the gel is pushed out from underneath to the edges.

Step 3

When the gel is completely dry, dip a sponge in water and rub the sponge over the image. This will reveal the image and start to remove the paper backing.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 4

You will see the pulp of the paper starting to lift. Gently continue this process until most of the paper has been removed.

(Image: Lucy Akins )

Step 5

Use your fingertips to rub off any remaining paper.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 6

Wipe off any additional paper residue with a clean paper towel.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 7

Apply a light coat of decoupage medium or sealant on top to protect your transferred image. Although this step is optional, it adds a nice touch to the finished pieces.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

These black-and-white reindeer images are both festive and rustic, but with this transfer method, you can customize your tree with images in any style or color.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

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