Adhering an old sticker to a notebook
December 26, 2016 10:37 AM   Subscribe

I bought this planner for 2017, because I'm one of those people who's convinced that my life will be perfect if I can just find the right organizational system. I want to put this amazing sticker on the cover and have it last as long as possible. The sticker is from 1975 so I'm worried that the adhesive left won't do a great job. What are some things I can do/steps I can take to make sure it stays stuck thoroughly as long as possible? (If nothing else, I was thinking about putting some kind of adhesive around the edges on the bottom before I stick it down, but what kind?) Any thoughts? Thanks!
posted by skycrashesdown to Grab Bag (24 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Double sided tape would work. It's fantastically useful stuff.

Alternatively, put packing tape over the top to seal it down.

If you want a really polished look, you could put down the sticker, put packing tape gently over it, then carefully use an very sharp blade to trim away the extra tape in a contour around the sticker.
posted by itesser at 10:44 AM on December 26, 2016 [1 favorite]

You could laminate the sticker (that way it won't get ripped and you can reuse it) and then use heavy-duty double-sided tape.
posted by littlesq at 10:46 AM on December 26, 2016 [13 favorites]

Laminate and then use a spray adhesive like Super 77 wouldn't be a bulky as double sided tape though you'd damage the cover removing the laminated sticker if that is something you care about.

You can also use a mactac to protect the sticker if you prefer something more flexible than most heat laminating materials.
posted by Mitheral at 10:56 AM on December 26, 2016

I'm no expert on decoupage, but I'd probably go at it with some ModPodge or a diluted white glue mix, both under and over top of the sticker.

(cool sticker!)
posted by hydra77 at 11:04 AM on December 26, 2016 [1 favorite]

I'd be tempted to scan it and make a reproduction rather than using the original...
posted by primethyme at 11:07 AM on December 26, 2016 [21 favorites]

I would stick it on and then cover it with clear sticky plastic, which I'd already cut into shape to follow the contours of the sticker, plus a margin. I would NOT mess with the sticker adhesive itself.
posted by Too-Ticky at 11:07 AM on December 26, 2016

Clear packing tape.
posted by kindall at 11:10 AM on December 26, 2016

If you want the sticker to be permanent and don't care about more fade to the sticker's face: contact cement. That stuff never comes off, there will be no edges peeling. Though it'll fade from the sun, etc.

If you want the stick to be permanent and add protection, lay the sticker face-down on some packing tape or an adhesive cell screen protector. Trim the edges, apply contact cement to the back.

If you want the sticker to be removable and want to keep the cover of the journal pristine: rubber cement. There are 2 methods for rubber cement, and one of them allows the stickiness and removability of a high-quality sticky note. The residue can be easily wiped off with warm friction, aka rubbing your hand on it.

If you want to preserve the sticker and keep it removable: laminate or use packing tape, and use paper cement.
posted by FirstMateKate at 11:14 AM on December 26, 2016

Mod Podge decoupage glue is made for this. I'd both paste it down and paint over it with the Mod Podge -- it'll stay down for just about ever. You can choose matte or gloss finish Mod Podge, as you please.
posted by ourobouros at 11:32 AM on December 26, 2016 [1 favorite]

If you don't care about being able to get the sticker OFF, superglue that sucker on and then ModPodge over it to help protect it.
posted by ElizaDolots at 12:06 PM on December 26, 2016

Clear contact paper.
posted by radwolf76 at 12:09 PM on December 26, 2016

I would scan it, print the image on sticker paper, and generate an infinite number of replacements with modern stickum, which I would then cover carefully with packing tape if needed. That original sticker is TOO AWESOME but presidential terms are 4 years long, so you might need it again in 2018-2020.
posted by The Elusive Architeuthis at 12:20 PM on December 26, 2016 [18 favorites]

Something like these self adhesive laminating sheets may work. I use a more heavy-duty version of these for creating signage at work.
posted by aristan at 12:56 PM on December 26, 2016 [1 favorite]

I've used self-adhesive laminating sheets for similar projects. They're great and hold up well. No need for additional adhesive on the sticker itself. The sheet will hold it in place.
Paper planners are so fun. I put lots of stickers inside and tape in mementos with packing tape. They end up being a diary souvenir after the year is done.
posted by quince at 1:19 PM on December 26, 2016

nthing duplicate it. I just wouldn't bother printing at home - unless you have a fairly good laser printer, it's always the easiest, most expensive way to get disappointed. Check with a printshop if they do stickers or print in vinyl paper instead, or with some online store that does custom stickers, although a few might balk at the idea of reproducing unaltered copyrighted material.

Start by scanning the image at around 600dpi, edit carefully to clean the original, remove scanning artifacts (as well as the original die-cut, unless you are planning on cutting it exactly like the original) and some color correction if necessary, put as many as possible in a printing page respecting bleed borders and get a handful of copies. This way, you'll also have a few spare to give away while keeping the original intact.
posted by lmfsilva at 1:36 PM on December 26, 2016

Nthing "scan it in and get duplicates made". Most upload-your-own stores that sell stickers I've seen (eg Redbubble) put an extra white border around images to make sure everything prints, and that might spoil the effect you're going for, but you should be able to find somewhere to do the job for you if you don't want to go the "get sticker paper and print your own on a home printer" route.
posted by sailoreagle at 2:27 PM on December 26, 2016

If you decide to use tape please spring for 3M Archival Book Tape. It's much nicer and will hold up way better than packing tape - it's what librarians use to repair books and adhere dust jackets. You can order it off Amazon for under $10 I think. It comes quite wide; if it comes as wide as the sticker it'd be more or less like laminating.

You should totally have duplicates made. It's an awesome sticker.
posted by jrobin276 at 3:43 PM on December 26, 2016

Response by poster: Alas, right now I have access to neither a printer of any kind nor a quality scanner. Any recommendations for a place in Seattle I could take it to and have it scanned and printed on sticker paper? If I can find a place willing to print it, given that it's copyrighted, I'd be happy to make a bunch if they aren't too pricey, and send them out to interested Mefites!
posted by skycrashesdown at 4:35 PM on December 26, 2016 [3 favorites]

Kinko's/FedEx Office.
posted by Bretley at 6:26 PM on December 26, 2016

I haven't used them since they were just Kinkos and then only in Canada but FedEx Office has a few locations in Seattle. Kinkos self service options were essentially unmonitored vis a vis copyright infringement.

Your phone will probably take a picture with more than enough resolution to print decent stickers. Insert the photo into an appropriate sized grid in the word processor of your choice and then take the file to a FedEX Office to print it. I'd just call and check to see if they either have quality sticker paper or allow you to supply your own before heading over.
posted by Mitheral at 6:27 PM on December 26, 2016

I came in to say double-sided garment tape. Love that sticker!
posted by bunderful at 7:18 PM on December 26, 2016

Nthing ModPodge
posted by tristeza at 8:45 PM on December 26, 2016

Maybe Aurora Prints? (And please please please let me get in on this, I will chip in on printing costs.)
posted by The corpse in the library at 8:14 AM on December 27, 2016

In addition to all the suggestions above, make sure the surface is really clean, especially in regards to oils, including from your hands. When I want something to stick I generally wash the surface with a little soapy water on a damp cloth, then wipe it down with water, again on a damp cloth, then dry/degrease it with a solvent. Acetone is great, but often takes the color off the surface, in which case rubbing alcohol (the >90% kind, or 190 proof grain alcohol) is usually safe. Of course you want to test all of the above steps in an inconspicuous place to make sure they won't damage the cover. I can't really tell what the cover is made of in the picture or from the website (I could only see it described as "vegan") to my cleaning suggestions may or may not be practical. Also, if the cover is not smooth you should definitely use contact cement or something similar to fill in the little gaps on the surface.
posted by TedW at 5:57 AM on December 28, 2016

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