The first project for my holiday gifts this year was a set of personalized flight map drink coasters. I read some tutorials online as to how to create coasters using paper and this project seemed simple enough. I started off by purchasing a vintage flight map on Ebay from the 1970′s. I decided that the NY flight map would be most relevant to this project and for the person I was giving them too. I really like that cork coasters slip less so, I purchased a set of 6 discontinued cork coasters on Ebay. It is much easier to use flat top coasters rather than a tile, that could have a beveled edge. Every tutorial I came across said to use mod podge, which can be used as an adhesive and a glue for paper projects. Now, I have an important time saver for you. Only Use Hard Coat mod podge-let it dry and use a varnish to finish. Other mod podge dries tacky and soft- not a good look for a coaster.
What you will need:
Scissors or exacto blade
Straight edge ruler
Nylon or sponge bush that does not shed
Ready made coasters to cover or pieces of cork cut to size
Hard Coat Mod Podge
Here are the steps:
- Choose a part of the map you would like to use.
- Cut around the coaster to cut the paper to size
- Once you have finished all your paper cutting wipe your coasters clean with a damp cloth, to remove any access dirt.
- Take a brush (a sponge or very soft nylon works best) and apply a thin coat of the mod podge to the surface of the coaster you wish to cover.
- Let the mod podge dry for a second. Not too long or else the paper will not stick. This helps limit any air bubbles.
- Place the paper down face up on the wet mod podge.
- Press down gently and take your bone folder or any soft hard edge that will not snag your paper, to smooth out any creases or bubbles. I ended up using a clay tool that had a rounded edge. This step will help the paper adhere to the coaster.
- Once your coasters are covered let them dry for about 15-30 min. Depending on inside temperature and humidity, drying time can differ. Skipping the drying step can result in air bubbles under the mod podge and paper layer.
- Trim off any excess paper that may hang over the edge of your coaster.
- Apply a thin coat of mod podge on top of your coaster, smoothing out any drips over the side edges. Let the coat dry for 15-30 mins.
- Repeat the above step 1 more time, for a total of 2 coats of mod podge. If you really want to you can apply one more coat, but I would not suggest more than 3 coats. You will be applying a varnish which will act as a sealant and too much mod podge will look bulky.
- Let the coasters dry over night. The bottle says let cure for 4 weeks, but since we are putting a varnish to create a water tight seal we can speed up this step.
- Lightly sand the surface of the coaster with a very fine sand paper and wipe clean of any dust. This will help the varnish adhere to the coaster.
- Take your water based low odor varnish and apply 1 medium thick coat, letting it dry over night before handling. I have found that using more than 2 coats of varnish is not necessary, if you would like to use more I would let the first coat dry for 2 hours before applying the second coat.
- Let the coasters dry overnight and you are ready to use!