Glue, Water and Paper
June 15, 2008 11:20 AM   Subscribe

I have a print that I want to glue to the wall.

I have a color print on bond paper that I want to glue to the wall. I don't know what the technique is called but I know it involves water mixed with white glue and brushed over the print.

If anyone knows how to do this, please share since I don't want to ruin this print.

posted by edmz to Media & Arts (7 answers total)
I think it is called decopage.
posted by bz at 11:21 AM on June 15, 2008

It's called Decoupage.
posted by bcwinters at 11:22 AM on June 15, 2008

Actually, it's d├ęcoupage but, then, who's counting?
posted by bz at 11:39 AM on June 15, 2008

The most popular product for this is called Mod Podge, easily and cheaply available at most craft stores. You can use a water/glue mixture, but Mod Podge is premixed and you may have better results with it than water & glue (I've used both -- I have my issues with Mod Podge, but it does what it's suppose to).

As for how, it's basically spread glue/Mod Podge on the wall (and the back of your print), stick print to wall, smooth out air bubbles, spread another layer of glue/Mod Podge on top to seal it and let dry. I would personally use a top coat of a water-based polyurethane no matter which route you go -- Mod Podge can get sticky in humid climates, even after it's dry.

Do know, though, that once you do this, your print will be permanently on the wall and you won't be able to remove it without destroying it if/when you move. I only mention this because you say you don't want to ruin your print.
posted by darksong at 12:28 PM on June 15, 2008

Consider using Crescent brand board, Foamcore, Gatorboard or other heavy illustrator board to mount the print on. That way you get the nice flat display, clean and crisp, and you can mount it to the wall using an inexpensive hanger or even double sided tape. You can get sizes up to 4 foot by 8 foot at your local professional printer or reprographics; smaller sizes available at local art supply or craft supply.

If you have some money, a professional print shop can mount it for you. Could be up to $100 or so, depending on size and material. I have gotten 24"x36" stuff mounted on 1/4" black Gatorboard with heavy clear plastic lamination on top for $80. Looks spectacular, it's light, portable, and durable.

Directly mounting a print to a wall can't be a good idea, and since you say you don't want to ruin the print, I would strongly recommend against mounting to the wall. Really.

You can slipsheet the print to the board using the Mod Podge, or use a liberal amount of spray adhesive. If you don't have experience using the spray adhesive, practice on some junk paper first. Spray adhesive is merciless and unforgiving, but done properly will give excellent results. Humidity can make the print wrinkle, so you need to get 100% uniform coverage on the adhesive - Mod Podge is easier to use for that reason, so you might want to stick with that. Spray adhesive has the advantage of not having to wait to dry.

Also, test the Mod Podge on a similar print to make sure the stuff doesn't make any of the colors run or blur. If the print is off an inkjet, the colors are water soluble and will run the second anything wet hits them. I'd probably not put anything on top of the print if it were me. Over time, some of these products can turn yellow, and you won't be able to do anything about it.
posted by Xoebe at 1:56 PM on June 15, 2008

Is wheatpaste also an option instead of glue?

(btw, thanks a lot for the answers)
posted by edmz at 2:59 PM on June 15, 2008

Do you live somewhere that is at all damp? Flour and water glue will come unstuck again if it gets re-wet and I've also had problems with it going mouldy if it wasn't able to fully dry (and stay dry). I don't know how well it would work somewhere totally dry, but I do know it won't be suitable if your environment is damp or overly humid.
posted by shelleycat at 5:04 PM on June 15, 2008

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