Cheap & Easy DIY Decals

Thought I would share this solution I came up with for DIY decals for he backyarders. I recently got some quotes from a few local printing companies for some decals and they were criminally expensive and nonviable for me, as they had to set up a screen to print them and labour costs etc. Came up with this quick easy fix which turns out as good if not better.


  1. Get some 160g A4 paper and A4 rice or tissue paper

  2. Brush a fine edge to the heavy paper with some high grade PVA, then carefully place the rice paper over.

  3. Print your design from your computer then cut the thin edge, voila’


As I had access to all these materials through my work, total cost = FREE!


If I’m not mistaken you want to make sure it’s an ink printer your’re using if you’re using poly resin, not a laser.  I read somewhere that the toner will run and bleed if it’s hit with the resin.

I’ve had good success using an inkjet printer with polyester resin

Yep, that’s exactly the process I’ve been using for the past couple of years, except I do it using A3 so I can get more bang for my buck. The only catch is that I can’t find rice paper that comes in standard paper sizes, so I have to cut it to size, which is a pain in the arse. The results, however, are worth the pain. I’ve only had one bleed, and that was user error (I messed about with it way too much), not a fault of the technology.

Use Transparencies or duraclear. These substrates dont absorb ink like the paper does. so you get a better and deeper ink saturation into your rice paper.

Also use screen printers platten adhesive spray. a light mist. kills any bleeding.

Spray… slap rice paper on, Print, pull repeat.

Good tips!
Running out of rice paper and have tried taping tissue paper to standard A4 before with mixed results but will have to try the spray adhesive…

Hey khingphin I use those double sided sticky tape rollers from officeworks. Just lay down the four sides of tape and press the rice paper down. less mess than the glue. I dont have a great printer, but I still get good results with black, colour not so much. I also set my printer to print slow, gets a cleaner edge to your fonts/ decals etc. 

small example of one of the decal prints 

Be careful with that stuff. I use double sided tape, mainly to kill the expensive photocopier type printer at work, you know the the multicolor type that cost $10000+? Paperjams with double sided tape around all those rollers in there are so much fun!!!

I use craft glues sticks around the edge of the paper, then roll tissue paper on. Another quick, clean option.


haavard I havent had any problems with it  . Its not really tape it leaves a small sticky substance thats as thin as a glue

Hah classic, thought I had made a breakthrough, not even. Great minds think alike I guess,ha.

Or the alternative - fools seldom differ.

Haavard - I’m dreading the day when my glued-up (glue stick) logo gets jammed somewhere in the middle of the $10,000 work printer. Hasn’t happened yet, but if it does… well, that will be my last day at this desk.