What Does Mod Podge Work On?

Every crafter should have some Mod Podge in their craft area. But what if you have a project in mind and wonder if the Podge will work on the chosen material? You don’t need a list of 100 Cool Mod Podge projects; you just want to know if you should use Mod Podge or something else.

Mod Podge will work on most surfaces, including glass, fabric, wood, and paper. For example, Mod Podge will work on most clay projects, but it doesn’t perform well in humid conditions. Likewise, you’ll get mixed results from plastic because Mod Podge doesn’t stick well to rigid plastics. 

Sometimes, you have a project idea in mind, and you just want to know if it’ll work. You don’t need to spend another hour scrolling through Pinterest posts to get your answer. If you want to know what your Mod Podge will work on and how to apply it properly, read on!

What Is Mod Podge?

Jan Wetstone created Mod Podge in the 1960s to speed up the decoupage process. The craft was popular in the 50s and 60s, but it was time-consuming. 

Wetstone wanted decoupage to be fun and creative, so she experimented until she created a water-based product that served as a glue, sealer, and finish in one. 

An antique store owner, Wetstone tested Mod Podge on furniture and other objects. Her most famous project might have been a fabric-covered VW bug

The Mod Podge product line has since expanded beyond the original Gloss and Matte formulas. Specialty finishes, formulas for specific surfaces and topcoats, and products to transfer photos are now part of the Mod Podge family.

Does Mod Podge Work on Glass?

You can create some fantastic projects using glass. If you want to use doilies, fabric, ribbons, stickers, scrapbooks, tissue, or wrapping paper, follow a few simple steps for a successful final product.

  1. Prepare the Glass. Oil and dirt on the glass will keep your materials from sticking, so prepping the glass means cleaning it with soap and water. You can also clean the glass with rubbing alcohol and cotton balls. Let it fully dry before moving on to the next step.
  2. Paint the glass. This is an optional step, but consider using an artist sponge for better results if you opt for paint. Sand the glass lightly if you’re worried the paint won’t stick.
  3. Apply the materials. Trim your materials to size, apply Mod Podge to them, and smooth onto the glass. 
  4. Seal your project. Once you finish applying your items, give the Mod Podge 20 minutes to dry and then seal it with a final coat.

Does Mod Podge Work on Fabric?

It’s possible to use Mod Podge on fabric projects if you have Fabric Mod Podge. 

You can use it to apply fabric to furniture, wood, and other fabric. Working with fabric can lead to fraying in normal circumstances, but the Fabric Mod Podge will prevent that. 

  1. If your project calls for large pieces of fabric, you might wish to iron the fabric first.
  2. Wash and dry the fabric. 
  3. Next, brush on a heavy coat of Fabric Mod Podge. 
  4. After the fabric has dried thoroughly, cut it to size. 

For smaller projects, use the Fabric Mod Podge. Larger projects, such as fabric on furniture, will turn out better if you use Hard Coat Mod Podge.

Don’t forget to add a top coat of Mod Podge as a sealant and let the project dry before enjoying it.

Can I Use Mod Podge on Clay?

Mod Podge makes a suitable sealant for a clay project, and you can use it on polymer or air-dry clay. 

When it’s cured, polymer clay is vinyl, which does not need to be sealed. However, you should seal what goes on the cured clay, and Mod Podge is one way to do so. Clay projects kids make in school are often sealed with Mod Podge after they’re cured and painted. 

  • Use Mod Podge to create a unique finish. For example, use Mod Podge Sparkle to add glitter or one of the finishes to create a glossy or matte look.
  • If you want air-dry clay to have a kiln-fired look, blend Mod Podge with a craft color and dab it onto the piece. Then, wipe off the excess color and let it dry. 
  • Decorate a terracotta pot. Give the pot two coats of acrylic paint and let dry. Next, mix Mod Podge with watercolor paint and let your creativity come out to play. Finish with a final coat of Mod Podge.

A word of caution: Mod Podge tends not to perform well in humid conditions. If you plan to keep your finished product in places with high humidity, try Mod Podge Outdoor. This Mod Podge formula is water-resistant (but not waterproof) but not UV resistant.

If your clay project will be exposed to the elements continuously, consider using a varnish instead.

Better yet, make your own clay with Mod Podge Collage Clay!

Can I Use Mod Podge on Plastic?

It depends on the type of plastic you use, as Mod Podge will stick to many — but not all — plastic surfaces.

For example, hard plastics have additional resins, making it difficult for the Mod Podge to adhere correctly. You’ll have better success with soft plastics.

If you want to use Mod Podge on plastic, follow these suggestions:

  1. Buy cheap over expensive. If you want to decoupage plastic bins, for example, the cheaper ones will have fewer resins.
  2. To give your materials something to grab ahold of, sandpaper the surface and wipe off any dust
  3. Use spray paint made for plastic and let it dry first.

A fun Mod Podge project idea is to buy a set of plastic water bottles and decorate them with paper. Then, use Mod Podge Dishwasher-Safe Gloss, and you won’t have to wash them by hand.

Does Mod Podge Work on Wood?

Mod Podge and wood work well together. In fact, it’s a fun way to make signs with wood, scrapbook pages, and paint.

As with most wood projects, you need to first sand the surface smooth and then brush off the dust. Then paint the wood and let it dry thoroughly.

Meanwhile, cut the paper to size, apply Mod Podge to the back, and place the paper on the wood. Use a roller or scraper to get rid of bubbles. Once you have it in place, apply two to three coats of Mod Podge to seal. 

Can I Use Mod Podge on Canvas?

Mod Podge will work on canvas as well. You can create some stunning artwork with a canvas, paint, materials for your design, and Mod Podge.

Unless you want a white canvas, paint it using one or more coats.

Mod Podge your pieces to the canvas. If the pieces aren’t going on smoothly, place the canvas on a non-stick surface and smooth from the back of the canvas.

When your design is completed, add two coats of Mod Podge, wait 24 hours, and then hang your masterpiece.

Your Craft Store Might Not Have All Mod Podge Formulas

The original formulas — gloss and matte — are still around. However, the Mod Podge folks realized that some projects needed different formulations of the original formulas. 

Hence, they created a range of Mod Podge products, including the following:

  • Antique: creates a vintage, aged look without having to wait for ages.
  • Brushstroke: for a hand-painted look without the hand-painted price.
  • Dishwasher-Safe: for glasses, cups, and anything else you can hand wash or put on the top shelf of the dishwasher.
  • Extreme and Regular Glitter: for the glitter lovers.
  • Fabric: to avoid fraying while preparing and using fabric.
  • Outdoor: a water-resistant formula for items that sit outside. 
  • Paper Mod Podge: this formulation is specifically for scrapbookers who want archival quality glues.
  • Puzzle Saver: for hanging or framing the puzzles you spent hours poring over.

Mod Podge continuously adds new products, such as Glow-in-the-Dark Podge and various furniture and hard coat products. 

Bottom Line

Mod Podge is a versatile product that glues, seals, and finishes in one step. It works on almost any surface but be aware it might not perform well on hard plastics and is not ideal for clay that you will leave in wet or humid conditions.

Who knows? Maybe you’ll find the inspiration to Mod Podge your car!

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