Skip to main content

Originally published Friday, September 21, 2012 at 8:01 PM

  • Share:
  • Comments (0)
  • Print

Vintage wallpaper inspires decorating cabinets

Decoupage a cabinet

Most Popular Comments
Hide / Show comments
No comments have been posted to this article.
Start the conversation >


A few weeks ago I took my monthly trip to the local flea market, where I went on a vintage-wallpaper-buying spree. I also found some beautiful old maps, shelf-edging paper and wall borders.

I was so inspired by the soft blue and cream hues of these old papers that when I brought them home I was motivated to decoupage the cabinet panels in my studio.

I did it in under two hours.


Scraps of wallpaper, wrapping paper, shelf edging, wall borders, etc.

Scissors and/or pinking shears


Mod Podge or watered-down white glue

1 inch foam brush for the glue



Start by grouping all of your papers together by color, so you have a harmonious collection. If you don’t want to use your original vintage finds, color copies will work, too.

Lay out all of your papers in front of you and start arranging them into pleasing combinations of patterns and colors. Play with running the shelf edging and wall borders both vertically and horizontally over the bigger pieces to create a balance of colors. Have fun layering all of your options to see what works best.

Measure the space you’re going to collage. Cabinets are great because the molding creates a natural frame. Use pinking shears or regular scissors to cut your papers to fit your measured space.

Start decoupaging and layering each cabinet based on the groupings you originally put together. Using your foam brush, apply Mod Podge to the back of your paper pieces. Once your collage is finished, cover it in one more layer of Mod Podge.

To give collages a more ornate frame, use a fine-point gold Sharpie marker to draw a border within the molding of your cabinet.

This look would work nicely in a kitchen using vintage kitchen papers of fruits, vegetables or flowers. This is also a simple method of covering up cabinets or furniture in disrepair to give them a brand-new look.