decoupage light switch plates {tutorial}

When your walls are painted a dark color, what do you do with the white outlet covers that become so obvious?

The walls in our living room are this deep slate gray which makes the random white switch plates dotting each wall really stand out {and not in a good way}.  Someone suggested painting them to match the wall color, but I was a little concerned that the paint would not adhere well to the plastic {has anyone tried this? Does it work?}.

Then yesterday I had a moment of inspiration and decided to decoupage them with a fun scrapbook paper to make them blend, but also add a touch of style.  I know this has been done many times before, but I thought I’d share with you how I created mine anyway. It was a super easy project and you could come up with some great ways to either hide the covers or make them pop, depending on what works for your room.

Here’s what you’ll need:

:: switch plate

:: scrapbook paper {or wrapping paper, fabric or book pages}

:: mod podge

:: scissors

:: sponge brush

STEP ONE: cut paper slightly larger than outlet cover

STEP TWO: apply mod podge to back of paper and front of switch cover and press together

STEP THREE: cut out the corners

STEP FOUR: applying more glue, fold in the sides and press to adhere

STEP FIVE: trim top and bottom flaps at an angle then fold down and press to adhere

STEP SIX: cut out center hole as shown

Once you have cut the paper, add glue, fold and press to adhere.

STEP SEVEN: cover front with mod podge to seal

And here it is up on the wall. From up close, you see the pretty pattern of the paper.

And from the couch, you barely notice the switches.

Just what I was hoping for.

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64 Responses to decoupage light switch plates {tutorial}

  1. Jaelynne January 18, 2013 at 9:05 pm #

    I purchased several crafted(decoupage I would imagine)switchplates on Etsy from a shop Suite Key Studio. I had purchased others on Ebay and was somewhat disappointed in them. I guess I was expecting them to look factory made but they were hand made and I decided to allow for the imperfections due to that fact. I was tempted to leave neutral feedback but decided it was my fault for thinking hand made should be perfect. I left postive feedback suggesting the seller smooth out edges and sand out rough textures and air bubbles on the finish.
    When I saw several designs from the Etsy shop I was hesitant and simply bookmarked them for later not sure if I wanted to venture into hand made again.
    I tried to make them myself but I will admit mine didn’t even look as good as the ones I was dissappointed in from Ebay. Knowing I coudln’t perfect the one’s I was attempting to make I decided to purchase one from the Etsy shop. I was surprised at the craftsmanship. It was beautifully made I emailed the seller and asked if all were made by the same person and same quality which she replied yes. So I bought the others and was delighted with my purchase. I know it’s not hard to make these but it is hard to perfect the decoupage technique and furn out a product worth selling online. I can honestly say I would never sell the ones I made in fear of neg feedback. Giving up on this I did take up mix media collage art designs on boxes and other flat surfaces which I can say I’m pretty good at and in time hope to open an online shop perhaps on Etsy and sell my one of a kind collages.
    Have you sold any of these online? I was amazed at one shop Uno Alla Volta that charges $24.00 for a single switcplate! You should consider selling yours online.

  2. Julia @ juliecache.com March 7, 2013 at 2:17 pm #

    I am so doing this. all the metal fixtures in our house are mismatched, and the creamy store color of switchplate is ick. covering the switchplate makes so much sense! love it! thank you for sharing.

  3. marilyne March 20, 2013 at 7:15 am #

    If you lightly sand, then use a good quality primer before you paint, the paint will adhere fine. I did this with my ceramic tile kitchen backsplash 7 years ago, and they are pristine. No one who’s seen them can tell they’re painted. gloss acrylic paint over primer. Of course, it’s hard to sand ceramic tile-I just cleaned them well with TSP cleaner, then primed and painted.

  4. Kate May 20, 2013 at 6:11 pm #

    I’ve been wanting to try these for months & just got a chance last night. They look great! Thanks so much for sharing this.

  5. Dez October 12, 2014 at 11:43 am #

    I’m absolutely in love with this idea!!! I’m going to the store now to get scrap booking paper!! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Lori November 22, 2014 at 10:58 am #

    I could not find any camo scrap booking paper so I went with material. I found out really quickly that I couldn’t put mod podge on both the cover and the material it was very messy I also had trouble cutting around the center holes in my cover, to get around this problem I marked the material and pre-cut the center holes and also cut the corners before I started to put every thing together I then covered only the cover with mod podge, I then put the cover on the back side of the material folded and adhered the edges to the cover then the centers. afterwards I put a layer of mod podge to the entire front and edges of the cover I turned out great. thanks

  7. chris c February 24, 2015 at 2:18 pm #

    I’ve been playing with this type of decoration for a week. Some things to think about
    1) apply a “light” coat of Mod to the plate. And fan it a little. If the glue is thick and wet the paper will wrinkle immediately and you won’t get the bubbles out.
    2) be patient. Once you put the paper on tacky surface, flip it over and put a book on top of it so it can dry under pressure and avoid the paper puckering
    3) origami paper works a ton better than scrap book paper because it bends easily around the edges of the plate and smoothes easier.
    4) use white background paper on white plates. the color of the plate WILL effect the end result of the paper once it is wet with Mod.
    5. Clothes pins are an easy way to keep the edges of the paper pressed down against the back and edges of the plate. You’ll want the front to dry for a couple hours BEFORE your try and glue the back of the plate down.
    6. Put more than one coat of final Mod on the front, so that it wears better but realize that when you put the Mod on the front of the paper it will probably pucker a little. There is no avoiding it. So go light and do multiple layers instead of one thick coating.

    You can also glue on little accents from the craft store, things that will lay rather flat and further spice up the paper pattern. I’m messing with polymer clay trying to recreate an effect on a plate I bought. I’ve made some nice plates, but not quite what I was going for so….

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