Decoupage yo’ flo’, yo

6 Nov

I  just decoupaged my floor. Pictures soon. I read a million things online, and after a good deal of trial and error, this is how I will do it in any other room. This was enough to do my big living room (approx 16×18′) and hallway, with supplies left over. (this is also assuming you have carpet with concrete underneath like I did – there are a million tutorials for ‘brown paper floor’ online I if you had wood). This is amazingly cheap as far as flooring options fog, looks good, and feels good on your feet. And you can easily do it yourself with no crazy tools. The most annoying thing is not having furniture in the room for about 3-4 days.

  • Chisel ($3)
  • concrete patch mix ($15-20)
  • trowel ($4)
  • concrete and masonry binder and primer* (in a paint can, $25)
  • 9″ paint roller
  • 3-4 9″ paint roller pads (I used one for adhesive and some for smooth surfaces)
  • 1 3-4″ paint roller c pad
  • paint tray
  • 2 gallons universal wall paper paste * (2x $19)
  • 1 roll of brown builders paper (35″x140 ft), cut into approx 3′ squares ($10)
  • squeege or scraper (the cheap plastic ones for drywall worked great)
  • 3 gallons Titebond II premium wood glue* ($18 each)
  • 2 quart mixing container with measurements ($2)
  • 2 8 oz bottles Rit Cocoa Brown liquid fabric dye $2.88 ea)
  • 1 8 oz bottle Rit Wine liquid fabric dye ($2.88 ea)
  • 2 gallons polyurethane *for floors* ($25 ea)
  • microfber/fuzzy socks and towels
  • a fan if you a have one
  1. Remove carpet or old floor. Remove any stuck carpet tacks using the chisel. patch the holes left by the carpet tacks and any other large holes. Remove any large bits of carpet foam or other bumpy objects from the floor. Sweep it thoroughly. (don’t worry about removing carpet glue or paint splatters or anything like that).
  2. it would be prudent to remove your baseboards and tape up around your floor. I didn’t do this. I regret that.
  3. paint it over with 1-2 layers of masonry binder. I read about this for painting the concrete and it seemed like a good step, and plus I’d also already bought it. I’ve read nowhere else of anyone doing this for decoupage, so do what you will. It says to wait four hours before painting, so I waited for hours before decoupaging. 
  4. Roll wallpaper paste evenly on the backs of the brown sheets as you use them (1 at a time). Other online tutorials use 1:1 Elmer’s glue all and water (homemade mod podge), and I tried that, but it wasn’t working great, and ahead some leftover wallpaper paste, so I used that. It worked well.
  5. line up the paper sheet with the wall into stick it into place. squeegee it until it is as flat as it will be (it might be a bit wrinkly, but get it as flat as possible.
  6. move on to your next sheet and continue until your floor is covered in paper. while the paper is drying, mix up some of the wood glue (4 cups glue: 2 cups warm water. Roll this over the edges and corners of your paper sheets and squeegee down. All of the online ‘recipes’ used Elmer’s glue all and water, but home depot didn’t have it. i went to hobby lobby and got some but it was $8/pint and really didn’t work great. I tried the Titebond on a whim because home depot had it, and it was much cheaper, easier and worked great). HINT: the wet paper sticks to bare skin. Wear fuzzy socks, and everywhere you need to rest your palms, put a microfiber cloth underneath.
  7. wait for that to dry. This is a good before bed activity, so you can sleep and not mess with it.
  8. In the morning when the glue is dry the paper should look nice and taught. Mix up Another batch of 4c glue:2 c warm water and cover the entire floor with a thin coat, applying special attention to any edges that might not be adhering. You want to start in the corner farthest away from your “exit point” and work towards the exit point so you don’t have to walk on it. A fan is helpful to help it dry. It dries pretty quick if there’s no puddles, about 30 minutes to an hour.
  9. You might notice some of the paper getting wrinkly when wet. Thats ok. It should get flat again when it’s dry.
  10. mix up another batch of 4c glue : 2c water, this time substituting 2 tbsp cocoa dye and 1 tbsp wine colored dye for 3 tbsp of the water.
  11. roll a thin coat of the glue/dye mix, again starting away from the exit point and working towards it. mix  it up whenever you need more.
  12. wait for that round to dry, and then add another coat of the glue/dye mix. If you rolled right-left the first time, try going up- down the second time. I like to work in small 3×3 squares sitting on the floor.
  13. wait for the glue to dry and do another coat if you want. Keep doing coats until you like the way it looks and feels.
  14. Once you’re satisfied with the glue and the last round is dry, start the coats of polyurethane. These go by fast. Roll the polyurethane in thin coats. They take about two hours to fully dry. cover the floor with as many coats as you’d like for the right look and feel and durability. I’ve heard anywhere from 2-10. I would say at least 4 coats, 2 hours apart each.
  15. and ta-da, you are done!
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