Our hands on project this week is a decoupaged plate. We have been studying Ancient Israel this year, and our Tapestry of Grace curriculum suggests that we hold various family feasts as we learn about Israel. We’ve already done a Sabbath meal (Shabbat), and soon it will be time for our family Passover Feast.
We’re planning to use these plates for our Passover feast, but you could adapt this project for any number of uses, from making a special plate for a birthday child to a Christmas gift for grandma.
I had originally planned to purchase these inexpensive disposable Seder plates, but then I had the idea to make our own. It’s a lot cheaper and more fun!
1 clear glass plate for each person (purchase at Dollar Tree or Walmart)
1 Coloring page of Seder meal foods (or other pictures if you are adapting this for a different use) and crayons or markers for each person
1 handout showing proper placement on the Seder plate
1 jar mod podge
foam paint brushes
*There are instructions at the bottom of this post for using fabric instead of tissue paper
1) The Coloring page for the Seder food is too small if printed as is. I copied the image and placed it in a Word for Windows file, then enlarged it about 150% and centered it on the page so that one printed page would have all six foods on it.
If I can do it, you can do it! I am not good with the computer!! I also enlarged the diagram showing proper placement so it was easier to read. Print out a copy for each plate. Have the kids color them however they want.
Alternatively, you could have the kids cut out pictures of the different seder foods from magazines, or do a search on Google Images for charoset, horseradish, etc. and paste chosen images into a word document…print in color and use those to decorate the plate.
NOTE: do not allow children to search google images…unsavory images may be mixed in with the other ones.
2) Cut out each circle. I used some of the white paper surrounding the circles to draw one extra circle that the kids could color however they wanted. Most Seder plates seem to have an image in the center. Some of us made Stars of David, and one boy made a candelabra for the center of his plate. If the plates have a price tag stuck to them, make sure you get it well cleaned off and completely dry before step 3.
Don’t worry, if the coat is thin, it will show through fine when the glue dries!
Remember, when you turn the plate over, the left side will now become the right side of the plate! So make sure you place those in a mirror image. It helps to start with the middle, top and bottom images. Turn the plate over frequently to check that the letters aren’t upside down and that the images look correctly placed. Allow the circles to dry.
Too many instructions and photos? Remember, I am blind in my mind’s eye!! I am writing this for others who are “seeing impaired” like me! The rest of you probably already know how to decoupage!
4) When the circles have dried on the plate, center it on a piece of tissue paper, making sure that the side you want to see is facing the plate, not you! Cut around the edge of the plate, leaving about an inch of paper extending beyond the plate.
Gently smooth the tissue paper from the center toward the edges of the plate, pressing gently down and out to smooth out any wrinkles. If the tissue paper tears, don’t worry! Just put a little more mod podge on that spot and cover the hole with a tissue paper patch!
6) Turn the plate over and gently cut away all excess tissue paper. If there is a bit of paper that you just can’t seem to cut close enough, just push it back down on itself so that it sticks to the underside of the plate.
*Making Fabric Decoupaged plates
We have plenty of mod podge left, so I am hoping to make some as Christmas gifts with holiday fabric. The technique is much the same:
1) Wash and dry the plate thoroughly. Center it on printed fabric (cotton or poly/cotton works best). Move the plate around until the image on the fabric looks right.
2) Cut out the fabric, leaving about an inch or so of margin around the edge of the plate.
3) Then paint the back of the plate with the mod podge, coating it well. Turn the plate upside down and press the fabric onto the back, making sure to check that the image looks right on the front side. Gently press out all the bubbles and smooth the fabric to the edge of the plate using your fingers.
4) Generously cover the back of the plate and fabric with another coat of mod podge. Allow it to dry, upside down. When the mod podge is completely dry, trim the excess fabric with a razor blade or craft knife.
A quick Google search of Decoupage revealed that this technique can be used in all kinds of ways! Matching plates and platters, lampshades, vases, purses…apparently anything can receive the decoupage technique with wonderful effect.
This may go down as another one of those “Molly projects”, like the time I decided to learn to quilt, one King-sized bedspread at a time. I got about 15 individual squares done and gave up before finishing 100 more or piecing anything together….anyone need a potholder?
I’m not very crafty, but I can sure get enthusiastic about a project like this one.