Paint Stir Sticks Picture Frame {Mod Podge Image Transfer}

Mod Podge is one of the most versatile mediums in my craft arsenal.  It comes in a zillion different formulas and shine.  The latest Mod Podge I got to try was the Image Transfer.  Did you know you could use Mod Podge to transfer an image to fabric, wood, glass or virtually any other surface?  I also added paint sticks to create a wood frame around it.



Mod Podge Image Transfer

Matte Mod Podge

Foam Roller

Paint Sticks

Gorilla Glue Tape

Gorilla Glue Wood Glue

Miter Saw

Tape Measure

Foam brush

Pre Stain Conditioner

Stain of your choice



1.  I started by printing out a color copy of the image of my choice.  Make sure you choose the best print setting to get the best possible transfer.  Cut out the image.


2.  I cut my paint sticks down to size and then used the Gorilla Glue Tape on the back to hold it in place.  In hindsight, I wish I would have left a small gap between each of the sticks so it would look more pallet-ish.


3.  I also gave it a quick coat of silver spray paint.  I wasn’t sure if you would be able to see through the image or not.  But I really didn’t need to do this step.

4.  Put a medium coat of Mod Podge Image transfer over the top of your image.


5.  Press your image down onto the paint sticks and burnish it down.  It is very important that the image is stuck well to the paint sticks in order to get a great transfer.  You should be able to slightly see the image once burnished well. Let it sit 24 hours to dry.

6.  In the morning wet your image with a sponge.  Let it soak in for about 2 minutes.  Then slowly and lightly roll the paper off by rubbing your finger back and forth.  This takes about 10 minutes and makes a big mess.removing-paper-on-an-image-transfer

Tip:  Be careful of dark areas of your image.  The ink can transfer to your finger when you rub it.  You can then transfer it back to the image making it muddy.

7.  Once all of the paper has been removed let it dry.  Once dry give it a quick sanding with 220 grit sandpaper to make it smooth. (Check out my painted DIY hands!)


8.  I then sealed the top with some Matte Mod Podge and a foam roller.


9.  While that was drying I cut my frame to size mitering the corners.

10.  I glued the corners up and put the Gorilla Glue on the back to hold it in place while the glue was drying.


11.  Once the glue dried I gave it a coat of Pre- Stain Conditioner followed by a coat of stain.staining-a-picture-frrame

12.  I glued the back of the frame onto the top of my paint sticked (did I just make that a verb?  Yep, totally) image transfer.  You can either clamp it for a tight seal or put a heavy object on top.

The transfer dulled the color a little almost making it look sepia.  It is a different kind of look, but it looks slightly rustic.  This is definitely a very cheap gift idea.

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  1. cool! I did this years ago with a product called “picture it” Funny how things come back around. 🙂


  2. I like it! I think it would be perfect for making vintage looking signs. 🙂 Your family is adorable. I wonder if adjusting the saturation on the picture would make it a different end product?

    • I bet it would. I had never tried it before so I didn’t know what to expect, this definitely turned out more rustic. It warmed up the picture for sure.

  3. What type of printer did you use? Anytime I see a picture transfer it usually calls for use with a laser printer. Most people own ink jet printers. If I can use this with ink jet I am gonna be one happy gal. I have been wanting to do some picture transfer!

    vndlewis at rocketmail dot com

  4. I have to get some of that image transfer, I’ve been seeing some great projects using it. I love how your picture turned out! Paint sticks, such a handy tool to have around…I rarely use them for stirring paint. I’m wondering if you had left the gaps for a ‘pallet’ look if you would have cut out essential parts, like eyes or mouths? That happened to me once so I had to toss it.
    Debbie 🙂

    • Yah I thought about that too. I am sure it worked out better this way. I was more hoping for the depth but not necessarily cutting that area out. I might try again and see if it works.

  5. This is lovely!! I need to craft with those paint sticks. Like STAT!!!

  6. Roberta Iloff says

    Hi Beckie, I like the rustic look of the photo. I don’t have access to a color printer, I bet black & white would look rustic too. Do you just slather the photo surface only? Is paper on top to protect the photo when burnishing? I’m wanting to try a transfer project, this might be the perfect inspiration & Mod Podge to do it!

  7. Beckie,
    Very neat project! Loved how it turned out. I haven’t tried the gorilla tape yet, I can see where it might come in handy for a lot of things, might just have to get me some of that.

  8. I just tried doing this and am a little confused. I expected for the ink to be directly on the wood after I rubbed off the paper, so I could see the wood grain and such through the image… But instead what it seems like is that a very thin layer of paper with the photo on it is left behind stuck to the wood and if I keep scrubbing there’s more white underneath the color and if I continue to scrub there’s nothing at all… But if that’s the case, I’m not sure why people would choose to do this instead of just decoupaging an image onto wood and saving all the mess… unless it’s simply to get a distressed look. Anyways, I’m not sure if the issue is that I’m using the wrong ink/paper (I got color copies at kinko’s – I was told they were laser copies) or if I’m not getting what the end result is supposed to look like. Thanks in advance for any feedback!

    • Sofia I think you need to use an inkjet printer with it. It transfers it to the wood leaving an image embedded onto what your transferring it to. Use regular white printer paper too.


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