Anyone Out There Handy With Mod Podge?

Once upon a time I went to college. And I lived in a dorm with the other dorm dorks and I didn't really mind it so much. I never aspired to be a sorority girl except when I saw all their cute matchy matchy stuff and even then I didn't really want to be a sorority girl, but I sort of wanted some of their stuff.

I promise I have a point.

Many of the sorority girls at my school had these totally awesome super sized lap desks that their sorority "mom" made for them – cute magazine clippings and other fun flat embellishments abounded. Then this man in Stillwater did something to the board that sealed the deal for good. I'm not even sure what it was, but the boards were smooth and ready for writing.

Fast forward about 15 years. Have you priced nice large lap desks lately? They are crazy. I wanted to do something similar to what these sorority girls had in Stillwater, Oklahoma in the mid-90's because I'm totally hip like that. I asked my dad to cut me some boards which he willingly did. See?

Lap Desk Potential

But now I'm stuck. I had all these super plans to cutesify them for each of the girls and do the mod podge thing. Then it occurred to me that these probably won't be smooth enough to write or draw on.  There will be bumps from the paper.

Help? WWYD? (That's "what would you do" in case you didn't know that already.) I was planning on these for Christmas. Now I'm not so sure.

14 thoughts on “Anyone Out There Handy With Mod Podge?

  1. LM says:

    Put it all together like a collage type thing first, glue the individual pieces together, then maybe, laminate them if it’s paper type stuff? Then glue them to the wood, then they will be protected, and lay flat??? can buy laminate 8.5 x 11 pages at Wal Mart. fingers crossed! let us know how they turn out.

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  2. Holly says:

    Megan, I also wanted one of those in college, so I made one. :o) And mine is SUPER SIZED! Literally…HUGE. My dad helped me with the stuff that “the man in Stillwater” did for the sorority girls. We didn’t use modpodge. I can check with Dad to get exactly what it was, but it’s a super thick two bottle thing. You mix them together (one activates the other) then pour on. It forms a layer that is (on my board) about 1/2″ thick. You cannot feel any of the stuff below. I even have raised letters all around the edges and they are almost completely covered with the stuff. The thing to be careful about is air bubbles. But those are easy to get rid of if you blow a breath of hot air onto it. Your girls will love them if you have the time to make them. I padded mine with a ton of batting and it was the most comfortable thing ever!

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  3. Michelle says:

    Megan: The modge podge will “melt” if activated by heat (like if you put a laptop on it. I would recommend using modge podge for the initial laying of decoration, then getting polyeurethane and putting several good coats on it. The polyeurethane should be sanded between layers, then the dust wiped off with a soft cloth, then done again. The sanding will make it smooth.

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  4. jennifer says:

    I second Holly’s comment. Friends made stuff like this in college, and it was always using the two bottle thing where the two compounds got mixed right before they were to be applied to the surface and then solidified. It’s smooth on top and definitely thick enough to not notice any edges below. Good luck!

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  5. Jennifer says:

    I’m not sure. I did some really cute scrapbook paper onto clipboards with ModPodge for Christmas gifts last year. They were really cute but there were some lines in it from the mod podge.
    This blog should be able to help. I just found it a few days ago. They also have a really cute tea bag wrappers clipboard which made me think of you.
    http://modpodgerocks.blogspot.com/

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  6. Angela says:

    Yes! I am not sure of the name of it either, but lots of restaurants use it on their tables. It makes a super thick layer of clear coat so that it is completely smooth. Ask in a supply shop.

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  7. Dawn says:

    The thick stuff is called epoxy and you can get it at home improvement stores like Lowes, Menards, home depot etc. You can get it in craft stores near their spray paint but it is a lot more expensive.
    You could also put your collage together and have it color copied at a copy store and then glue the whole thing on so there are no ridges and then just polyeuthane it.
    Good luck I am sure they will be adorable

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  8. Staci says:

    I know this thread is rather old, but the stuff they use on lap boards to make it super shiny, hard, and smooth is called “pour on”. You can get it at craft stores like Michael’s of Hobby Lobby–JoAnnn’s–doesn’t carry it. You mix the two part epoxy together and then pour it onto your surface (it’s easier to do this before you put the pillowy part on the bottom). Smooth it out with something plastic and flat and wait as the air bubbles come to the surface (about 10 min) as they do, blow through a straw to help pop the bubbles (the carbon dioxide in your breath pops the bubbles), alternately you can use a long-handled candle lighter and pass it quickly over the board.

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  9. jules says:

    Wow! I was one of those sorority girls in Stillwater in the 90’s and just came online to google how in the world we did those lapboards! Thinking my daughter would love one of these boards and couldn’t remember the name of the finish! I definitely remember blowing out the bubbles though so sounds like “pour on” it is! Thank you! Thank you!!

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