November 16, 2023

How to make a beautiful keepsake by transferring photos onto wood!

How to transfer photos onto wood a beautiful keepsake idea

I am in love with this idea and I will continue to do it over and over again! It’s a wonderful keepsake for your own family, but it also makes for a beautiful thoughtful gift!

Check out this easy follow to video to learn how to make your own below!

To make your own you will need:

Transfer photo to wood - what you will need

  • A printed photograph (using a laser printer) onto regular printing paper MUST BE LASER PRINTS, NOT INKJET
  • A piece of wood – I used a thin ply wood, but you can use any but make sure it’s nice and smooth
  • Mod Podge
  • Gel medium
  • A brush/sponge
  • A wet tea towel
  • A smoothing tool (I used a large paddle pop stick)

How to transfer photos onto wood

Step 1

Paint your gel medium onto the FRONT of your image. Spread it nice and evenly

Step 2

Place the photo FRONT side down onto your wood and smooth out any bumps or lumps using your smoothing tool

Step 3

Let this sit over night

Step 4

Using your wet tea towel, gently rub onto your paper in a circular motion and slowly remove the backing of the paper (the gel medium will adhere your image to the wood)

Step 5

Once all the paper has been removed, finish your project by painting a generous (but even) layer of Mod Podge over the top to seal it!

Step 6 (optional)

Decorate with embellishments – I used seashells as it went well with my image

So beautiful and so simple!

*note – when you place the image down on the wood it will come out reversed (or mirrored), so before you print out your image, make sure you flip it on the computer so that it will come out correctly on the wood.

We have some other fun video tutorials for you to view too! You can check them out here.

We have plenty of other beautiful DIY keepsake ideas that you can check out here.

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20 thoughts on “How to make a beautiful keepsake by transferring photos onto wood!

    1. Joanns Fabrics. Michaels craft stores. Hobby Lobby. And some Walmarts. Hope you have these near you. If not any craft store.

    1. If you go to your local craft store such as Spotlight or Eckersley’s Art & Craft, they will have it for you 🙂 Jenni x

  1. This is great! Out of curiosity, do you know how long these will last? Will they fade or peel over time, or are they pretty stable? Thanks!

    1. It is pretty stable Sarah, as long as it is not exposed to the elements, it will be fine 🙂 Jenni x

  2. This would be a nice idea to use to make personalised coasters as a gift but would a hot mug or dampness from a wet glass damage it or is there some way of protecting it from that?

    1. This is common with this project, unfortunately 🙁 It is best to use a “tea towel” as mentioned above. Using fingers creates smudging from oils, and using a sponge is too rough and peels back too much of the image. It took me 3 tries to get an acceptable product.

  3. I live in France, a long way from any Wallmart, so what is ModPodg and what is the sealing agent please?

  4. I am trying to put a photo on the lid of a wooden humidor. How can I do this myself, or do you know where I could take it to be done professionally !? I am at a lost, been searching different sites to no avail! Thanks for any input you may have.

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