What do you coat handmade postcards in to protect the design?

I’m brand new to handmade postcards. Mine have marker doodles and stickers on them that I don’t want to fall off. Do you suggest modmodge? What do you use?


I do some collage cards myself and it’s not the super prettiest solution because it makes your card glossy, but it totally works fine and doesn’t mess with the design: I put some clear tape for my handmade cards :slight_smile:


These have clear tape on them, you can’t really tell in photos :slight_smile:


I have used Mod Podge, and it’s ok, although somewhat thick. (Which can be good too.)
My all time favourite is this:

There are so many similar, and I have used so, so many different ones.
At the moment I have one bought from Lidl called “Decoupage medium” and as much as I like how thin it is, the jar is awful. It gets stuck every time and the opening is too large. I have had UHU type, which never dried and stayed sticky forever, but these traveled well anyways. That was the worst I have tried.

I prefer some kind of varnish over tape, because if the tape is not as wide as postcard, there is “lines” where is a new row of tape. And some tapes absorb the colours to itself, so the image becomes looking like it bleeds/spreads. (Same with plastic sheets used to cover a book). (I think this is problem only with colours and pens/pencils, not magasine images).

In school we used watered down Eri Keeper, and I still do it, if I don’t have ready to use medium.

But, I like also cards sent as such, with no coating. Normally mail is kept in dry place, so there is no need to overly protect it. (But for some reason I still do.)

Edit. I used to have plastic made for protecting maps and drawings, and that was perfect. It’s matte, thin, doesn’t distort the colours, but it was also pricy. It was made by PelloPlast, but I think other manufacturers make it as well.


Mostly I don’t. Occasionally I’ll put packing tape over them like @mailfromjo. But generally I just let them go as is.


That’s beautiful work.

Mod Podge works pretty well and the result is a very sturdy postcard but also one that feels like a… board. As I like the different surface structures of paper I don’t want it to disappear under a coat of Mod Podge. I didn’t find a really satisfying solution yet, that’s why I usually send my selfmade cards within an envelope.


Thanks dear!

1 Like

I usually refrain from coating my cards. Only once did a piece of one of my handmade cards fall off on the way around the globe, as far as I know. That is a very small percentage and is not enough to convince me that a protection layer is necessary. Also, I think it is kinda ugly if you put tape all over it or wrap it in some kind of plastic sheet, sometimes even with tiny bubbles of air remaining behind, yuck… A gorgeous postcard can be ruined by doing this in my opinion. It is a bit tricky for stamps and postmarks to keep hold of the postcard, too, if it is completely coated. And it’s not very environment-friendly either, I think. Personally, I’d rather have some small damages to the card than a protective coating. Sometimes, it is kind of necessary but often, it is not.


So far I haven’t used any coating, and everything arrived mostly intact (some had a few scratches… but normal postcards do have them equally sometimes). Recently I made one with lots of flimsy parts and I decided to send in envelope then.

1 Like

I rub a candle over my painted postcards to protect it from moisture :slight_smile: Mod podge is pretty expensive where I live. I did search for varnish at some point but it was probably made for industrial use.



This is a nice suggestion for your blank cards!

If the drawing medium is pencil, pastel, etc., a light coating of hairspray. It’s not going to protect things 100%, and not much use for a lot of other mediums, but it’s a simple option.


Mod podge is what I use. I like to paint cards sometimes.

wow these def takes lot effort or time to make it but they look so nice! are these official stamps or you just buy knockoffs?

1 Like

I use canceled stamps I have seperated from envelopes :slight_smile:


Add images

This thread has inspired me to give handmade cards a try. These are light cardboard food packages collaged with mod podge. Not quite finished yet. Waiting for them to dry. Have a few more things to add.


I put 2 cards together in one laminating pouch with the message sides touching each other. After laminating I trim the edges so the 2 cards separate again. Like this the image is protected but the message side is still just cardboard :slight_smile:


That’s a brilliant solution, taebbig! I’m going to try that - - thank you!

1 Like

I use mat medium on my collagecards. If I used pencil or watercolors I just spray them with varnishspray, a light coat is enough.