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From Vintage to Vibrant: A LIFE-Infused Decoupage Trunk Makeover

I can't believe I am saying this....but I purchased and "sort of" painted a trunk. Why is this surprising to me??? Because until this decoupage paper trunk project, I swore I'd never do another trunk again!

Did you know that years ago I refinished trunks?

Long before I started I have no recorded history of you will just need to take my word for it!

They are a LOT of work!!!! More work was involved than I ever received enough pay for so I quickly reached burnout and retired from that process. But now I'm back to show you this incredible decoupage paper LIFE trunk!

vintage trunk makeover with LIFE decoupage paper by Traceys Fancy

If you are a new reader, hello and welcome to the Fancy Fam! With over a decade of furniture painting experience, I can honestly say that sharing my projects through this blog is still my favorite way to inspire! I've got years worth of fun and creative ways to update your home decor and furniture through paint! If this sounds like something you'd like to have delivered to you every Sunday be sure to sign up for my weekly newsletter here!


Another trunk? Let's do this!

I recently received this gorgeous decoupage paper from Dixie Belle and wanted something really special to use it on. I love the colors of this paper as well as the message.

LIFE decoupage paper graphic

Featuring just the single word LIFE.....I find it to be so thought provoking.

Before: Decoupage LIFE Trunk Makeover

While visiting a friend at her local shop (The Shabby Chicas) I noticed two very handsome trunks. They both were a bit smaller than the ones I had worked on in the past and I felt this might be a great fit to use with the new decoupage paper.

I liked the idea that the LIFE message would be displayed on the front of the trunk.

And I also loved that the message would be displayed on a piece that likely held someone from the past's prized LIFE possessions in it!

before vintage trunk makeover with LIFE decoupage paper by Traceys Fancy

So I did it!

I purchased the trunk!

Supplies Used

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Decoupage LIFE trunk Transformation

The overall transformation took place in a single evening.

I decided to leave most of the trunk in its original raw finish and to let the LIFE message be the focus!

vintage trunk makeover with LIFE decoupage paper by Traceys Fancy

Applying LIFE Decoupage Rice Paper

I applied the LIFE decoupage paper using my go to decoupage method which you can learn all about here in my How to Apply Decoupage blog.

This project was a bit more difficult as the surface was not smooth....leaving wrinkles no matter how much I trimmed and worked around awkward spaces.

close up of LIFE decoupage paper application

It is not the paper. It is clearly user error.....or project difficulty. LOL!

But I kind of like the wrinkles.....because what is LIFE without them?!?!

PRO TIP: Embrace the imperfections and you will see beauty in all your creations!

Adding Shadow for Contrast

I enhanced the paper with Best Dang Wax brown as added shadow around the orange paper and I love this effect. You can see the before and after effect below.

I also added bits of color wash in orange, red, yellow, and pink to the crevices in the wood and metal just to marry the paper and the wood tones.

I love the overall boho effect that this offers!

vintage trunk makeover with LIFE decoupage paper by Traceys Fancy

The Finished Look

Decoupage is quite possibly the easiest way to add personality to furniture art!

vintage trunk makeover with LIFE decoupage paper by Traceys Fancy

And now that I'm back to enjoying it may see quite a bit of it in the near future!

woman reading a magazine in front of vintage trunk makeover with LIFE decoupage paper by Traceys Fancy

More Inspiration: Decoupage Paper Projects

Decoupage paper is a simple way to add impact to your project! Here are some additional decoupage paper designs for your inspiration:

And of course, don't forget to VISIT THIS BLOG for very detailed step-by-step instructions for applying decoupage paper... including tricks for curved surfaces and around permanent knobs.

Click on any photo below for more up-close photos and all the design details


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vintage trunk makeover with LIFE decoupage paper by Traceys Fancy

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