Holy Family Plaque

Holy Family Plaque
I first got the idea for this tree last year as I was combing all the after Christmas sales. I found a pack of these cards at the dollar store, except the fact that they came with a huge, ugly, arched border around this pretty image. I knew I could find a way to rescue this painting from the ugly embellishment that cast it into the dollar bin, so I went back to the inspiration of the raw wood aisle of the craft store to do it.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 1
I bought a bunch of these small wooden plaques, and then painted the edges that I didn’t plan on covering with paper.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 2
I did all my decoupaging with a gloss varnish artist’s medium, because you’ll need it in the last step, and because I had it on hand. You can use mod podge or glue or whatever you prefer. I like to let the paper dry facedown so that gravity and the weight of the wood can get it good and stuck with fewer puckers or bubbles.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 3
When the medium is dry, cut the excess paper off to be flush with the edge of the wood, then rough the edges up with sandpaper.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 4
Use the gloss medium to stick down the main image you’re using. I tore the edges to get rid of that horrible border, but I like the messy look of it too.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 5
While the image is drying on the front, glue a ribbon loop to the back for a hanger, and cover it with more paper adhered with the gloss medium.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 6
When the image is dry, run a brown inkpad lightly over the top to distress it.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 7
I used a small piece of thin copper paper I had on hand to create the Rejoice title. I used a manual typewriter to emboss the letters, but stamps would work too if you don’t need it to be indented.

Holy Family Plaque Tutorial Step 8
When you have the ornament as embellished as you want it, pour on a layer of the gloss varnish artist’s medium. You want the layer to be fairly thick, but don’t pour so much that it overflows the edges. It will dry clear, but will also give it the look of an old oil canvas as it cracks and ripples.

All you have to do to make this ornament not nativity themed is to change the image you use. I think this would look gorgeous with an old Victorian Christmas image, or old family photos. Any image you want to look a little antiqued, while highlighting it in a way that is different from a regular picture frame.