When I was planning my wedding, there were so many DIY elements that I wanted to include and I knew that there was simply not enough time to do them. In the end, I had to decide on a few choice things – favors being one of them. I wanted our favors to be something cool and handmade that I felt tied into the feeling of the wedding while still be something useful that our guests could (and actually might want to) keep. So I finally settled on these handmade coasters, made from square tiles. My hubby and I have traveled quite a bit together, so we wanted to reflect that in our wedding design. Here’s what we came up with.
Together, Stefan and I busted out 250 of these puppies before our wedding, then hand tied them all in sets of two. Whew. But, they’re fun to make and we loved the end result. And almost three years later, many of our friends and family members are still using them. And the best part is that they’re super easy to make, so here’s a quick tutorial of the process for your crafting pleasure.
You will need:
- 4×4 square tiles (you can find these at Lowe’s or Home Depot)
- Modge Podge
- Something to spread the Modge Podge with (I use a mini roller)
- Scrapbook paper, magazine pages, old maps or whatever design suits your fancy
- Rolled cork with adhesive backing
I chose tiles in a tan color and I personally like the ones with the rounded edges, although that is up to individual preference. To start, rip your paper into a square that almost, but not completely covers the top of the tile. To save time, you can cut the paper, but I like the way the ripped paper gives them all a little character and makes each one a little different. Pour some Modge Podge into your tray and line up your tiles.
Next, give your tiles a good roll of Modge Podge, then lay down the paper over the top, smoothing it out flat. Do this for all the tiles, then get your roller all nice and full of more Modge Podge and coat over the paper on the tiles, making sure you get all of the sides as well.
Then, just give them some time to dry. Modge Podge dries pretty quickly, so they should be ready for another coat in under an hour. While they’re drying, smooth out any bubbles that may form with your finger, then put another thin coat over the top. When the hubby and I were doing these in mass quantity for a wedding, we’d stand over them with a hair dryer which will get it done in a matter of minutes. I like to give them three coats, but you can probably get away with just two.
After the last coat of Modge Podge has completely dried, you will want to seal your coasters so that they will not get all sticky and goopy when hit with liquid. Modge Podge is water based, so if you do not seal them, even just the condensation from your glass can cause a mess. I use a sponge brush and give them two coats of a semi-gloss polyurethane. Let each coat dry for at least 3-4 hours to set. I let the second set overnight before handling the tiles.
The last step is to pad the bottom of the tiles so that they will not scratch your table or counter. I use rolled cork with adhesive backing that you can get at any craft store. Just trace a tile onto the back, then cut inside your lines to make it just slightly smaller than the bottom of the tile. Then, simply peel off the backing and stick the cork to the bottom of the tile.
Oila! You have handmade coasters! Arent’ these just so fun!
Here’s one in action.
Sometimes I get a little craft happy and like to make big batches at a time.
Did you make homemade favors? What kind did you make?