While browsing chalk paint recently, I came across Annie Sloan’s image transfer medium and just had to give it a go, out of curiosity to see how it worked if nothing else! Since then, I’ve been transferring images onto any blank surface I can find to work out how to achieve the best result, and I think I’ve finally cracked it.
If you’re interested in using this method of image transfer, read my step-by-step guide with hints and tips below. But first…
What is Image Transfer Medium?
Image Transfer Medium allows you to transfer a photocopied or laser printed imaged onto a surface, by coating the image with the product, applying it face down on the surface, and once dry, rubbing away the paper to leave the image behind.
How to create a hanging plaque with image transfer
- Buy a blank plaque (or if you’re handy, make your own). Hobbycraft are great for these, or I recently bought some from Craft Shapes, who will even drill holes for you if needed for a small cost.
- Apply a coat of chalk paint and leave to dry.
- While it’s drying, cut out your images. Try to leave as little blank paper as possible. Remember, if you’re transferring text, it will need to be a mirror image.
- Next, I’ve found you get the best results by applying a thin coat of matt varnish. In my experience, when attempting to remove the paper, if left unvarnished the paint was prone to rubbing off in places as well. I haven’t had an issue with the varnish preventing the image from transferring so far.
- When the varnish is dry, coat the right side of the image generously with image transfer medium and place on the plaque right side down. Press down firmly and smooth out any air bubbles. Leave to dry for a least 2 hours, but preferably overnight. You want to ensure it is completely dry before attempting the next step.
- Fill a cup with warm water and use your finger to dampen the paper. Gently rub so that the paper starts to come away. Keep going, adding more water if necessary.
- Repeat the process until all the paper has been removed. I sometimes use a small paintbrush to remove stubborn bits of paper from the edges. Be patient, this part can take a while but it’s worth the effort!
- When you’re confident all the paper has been removed and you’re image is clear, add another coat of varnish to finish.
The image doesn’t come out perfectly every time (you may notice that my bee is missing the tip of his wing), but that’s all part of the effect. This method of image transfer is great if you want to achieve a vintage or shabby chic look.