Make Super Simple DIY Photo Coasters
Get your photos off of your phone and under a drink!
Turn your photos into Photo Coasters to show off your photography skills, crafting skills and ring-free coffee table.
These coasters are simple to make, fully functional, totally waterproof and super-dee-duper gifty.
Plus, they’re a heck of a lot safer than setting a hot coffee mug on your phone.
- 4″ Square Ceramic Tiles – We used these from Lowe’s and they were perfect, and only 16 cents!
- Printed Photos – One per tile
- Foam Brushes
- Mod Podge – We used the Gloss/Lustre
- Mod Podge Matte Clear Acrylic Sealing Spray
- A Ruler
- Glue Gun
- Scissors (or an x-acto knife)
Step One: Get Square!
Once you have your materials, use your ruler to trace a 4” x 4” square over your favorite part of each photo and cut it down to size.
When you’ve done it once, you can use your newly cut photo to trace a square onto your other photos – it’s a bit easier than the ruler.
Step Two: Get Your Glue On
Put a thin layer of Mod Podge onto the back of your photo and use your foam brushes to spread it evenly. Then gently place the photo, glue side down, onto the tile.
Make sure it’s centered and press firmly! Do this for each photo and leave them to dry for an hour or so.
Step Three: Seal and Repeat
Put a bit of Mod Podge onto your photo and spread it from left to right with your foam brush. Use firm, even strokes or it’ll streak! Eek.
Do this three times, giving each layer time to dry in between. We created an assembly line and by the time we finished the first layer on our last coaster, we went back and put another layer on the first.
Step Four: Fuzzy Four-by-Fours
Measure and cut your felt into 4” x 4” squares.
This fuzzy wuzzy fabric will keep your coasters from scratching your furniture.
Step Five: Use the Force
Using a hot glue gun, trace the outside edge of your tiles and then put an X through the middle. The more glue the merrier.
Press your felt firmly on all the corners and use your palm to push it flat against the whole tile.
Step Six: Spray Time
It’s best to set up an area outside to do your spraying.
Put some newspaper or poster board down, line up your coasters and spray them (downwind)! Pay attention to the instructions on the can, and leave them to dry.
We put three coats on ours.
Step Seven: Put ’em to Good Use
You did it!
The felt keeps them from scratching each other, so try stacking them and wrapping them with a ribbon if you’re thinking of gifting them.
Article by: Eric Niloff, the co-founder and CEO of EverPresent, a team of 40 scanning technicians, digital organizers, designers and editors based in Newton, Massachusetts. Eric and his team help thousands of families every year to digitize, organize and share their family photos and videos. Eric writes and advises on how to make family history preservation part of family events, estate plans and other family moments.
Taking it Further
- Create a theme for the coasters. Create coaster groups for different branches of your family, for a special vacation or dig up holiday photos from past years and use those.
- Don’t use photos. Get professional scans of your children’s artwork and use that! Even if the scan is large, you can print it at 4” x 6” and it’s a fun way to hold onto these special items without stacking them in a closet.
- Need prints? Use Photojojo’s print app Parabo Press.