My Coffee Table DIY

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March 23, 2013 by myfabfico

Every now and again I get these ideas that I absolutely have to see through. Like, not having them happen pains me. So after watching one of my favorite DIY’ers, Mr.Kate , I was inspired…no determined to create a coffee table for our little piece of Brooklyn.  I used the decoupage method to achieve our special look.

I was conflicted with whether to use a traditional coffee table from a thrift shop, but decided to pick up a Lack table from Ikea, that way if I screwed it up, I wouldn’t feel bad. In total this table took my about an hour and half  of labor and cost less than $30 to create!


Several people from Instagram asked me to do a tutorial on it so here we go. (Since this project was done about a week ago, I will use some excerpts from a WikiHow article)

Supplies you will need:

–       Coffee Table

–       Some type of paper to decoupage (I used FREE maps requested from NYC MTA subway booth attendants. They’re free, just ask for one.)


–       Modge Podge

–       The Modge Podge Roller

–       Modge Podge Sealeant Spray

–       A tarp

–       Paintbrush Sponges

–       Exacto Knife

–       Papertowels or sponges (cleaning supplies, Modge Podge can get kinda messy.

–       Polyurethane and Paint brush (optional)


Step 1– Lay out your Tarp and set out all of your materials. Place your paper towels in close proximity to your workspace. Get your materials ready. Collect materials you would like to decorate the table. You can use just about any materials for decoupage, including cards, tissue paper, magazine clippings, thin fabric pieces, or (of course) decoupage paper. The softer and more flexible the material, the easier it’ll be to work with if you’re decoupaging a curved surface.

Step 2: Size your materials to the area of the table you would like to cover. You don’t have to be too precise during this phase, you can clean excess edges after your glue dries. For my project I used on complete map and then I cut a portion of a second map that I wanted to use.

Step 3: Prepare the surface. Make sure the table is clean and dry, fill in deep gouges, and sand it down to remove bumps and imperfections if necessary. If you want to paint it or refinish it, you should do this before pasting anything onto it. For some materials, such as wood and metal, you may need to prime the surface with a coat of latex paint to help the cut-outs stick better.

Step 4: Apply the Modge Podge. Use the paintbrush sponge to brush a thin layer of glue onto the table and onto the backs of the cut-outs. Make sure you apply the glue evenly.

Step 5: Slowly lay your map onto the area you applied the glue. Apply the paper carefully to avoid bending or crumpling it, and smooth it out with the a small roller or with your finger, rubbing outward from the center. Wipe any excess glue that may run onto the side.

Repeat  Steps 3-5 with each piece.

Step 6: Allow glue to dry for about 15 minutes and then apply another coat. I applied about 3 coats. Be careful not to make the paper too soft though, it will start to tear and or peel if you do.

Step 7: About 25 minutes after applying the last coat, make sure it is dry and then begin spray with the Modge Podge Sealer. Make sure to open a few windows as well because this stuff is STONG! Hold can about 10-15 inche away and spray the entire area. Allow to dry and then repeat this.

Step 8: Once surface is complete use your SHARP (a dull knife will result in paper tears) Exacto knife to CAREFULLY trim the excess off the edges. If you attempt to do this too quickly you risk ripping the paper and or cutting more than you intend to.

Step:9  Optional- Apply a coat of Polyurethane Paint to protect the table from water and other wear an tear.

Allow to dry, place your table where you want, clan up, and you are good to go!


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