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How To Apply a Furniture Transfer

What are furniture transfers? We're glad you asked! In a nutshell, a furniture transfer is a pre-printed design such as a pattern, words or an image on a backing sheet that gets rubbed onto a surface; furniture, wall, decor item, etc. You pull away the backing sheet and the design stays behind! Clear as mud, right?

Watch this video to show you just how easy ReDesign with Prima Transfers are to use. Then, continue reading the rest of this post to get inspired and learn more about this fabulous technique!



Seems easy right? It is! When you open your transfer packaging, here's what's inside..



Packaged in a sturdy tube to prevent any damage to your transfer, you will also receive instructions that tell you exactly how to use the product, your transfer sheets and a wood stick for rubbing the transfer onto your surface.

Here's a closer look at the instructions..


Due to the pressure sensitive nature of transfer designs, please handle carefully when removing from packaging and placing on desired position. Our beautiful transfers can be applied to a wide range of surfaces. Please be sure that the desired surface is clean, dry, and has not been freshly painted. Allow at least 48 hours to 1 week for any new paint to properly cure.Each transfer consists of two sheets, one is the matte release paper and the other is the printed adhesive transfer itself. Also included is a wood application tool which rubs down the design onto the chosen surface.


1. With the release paper still attached, experiment with where you want to place the transfer on your furniture piece, sign or wall. Tack in place with painters tape.

2. Gently pull back the release paper 1 to 2 inches from the top edge of transfer. If working with a large design, tape down the top released corners of the transfer to ensure that the rub-on stays exactly in place white doing the transfer. Then slowly and carefully remove the rest of the release paper and tape down the corner and edges every few inches of transfer.

3. Working from the top to the bottom rub off the design using the enclosed wood stick, a plastic card, or other small hard tool (nothing sharp!) to ensure transfer of any of the small details that might have been missed.

4. Once the entire design has been transferred, make any touch ups desired and gently smooth down any bubbles or design edges by rubbing gently with a soft cloth.

Below are some photos we took of our first time using furniture transfers. We decided to cut out some flowers from a second transfer and layer them on top of the first transfer we put down. We broke our wooden stick from pressing harder than we needed too, oops! A plastic putty knife worked great to rub down the transfer.



With the release paper still attached, position and tack in place with painters tape.



Gently pullback the release paper a couple inches from the top edge.



Tack the top edge in place. Here we just pressed the transfer down to stick it in place but on a larger piece you would use painters tape to hold that edge from moving.



Gently pull back the rest of the release paper.



Starting at an edge, rub with a wooden stick (or other similar tool) working to the opposite side until all bits have been rubbed down. Then, peel away the transfer sheet. The image will be stuck to your object and the sheet will be clear.

We forgot to take a photo of that part when were applying the flowers, but here's another photo what it looks like when you are pulling back the clear transfer sheet after rubbing down the transfer.



Once we had the entire transfer rubbed down, we gently rubbed with a soft cotton cloth to smooth down a couple edges and bubbles. To add to the overall look of our piece, we also sanded some areas of the transfer to make it look a little worn and less perfect. A fine grit sandpaper like 220 - 400 will work.



We had painted this dresser with Chalk Paint™ by Annie Sloan and applied the transfer right to the Chalk Paint™.  Once we were all done, we applied a layer of Clear Soft Wax to the dresser. We applied the clear wax right over the transfer too. Rub the wax on with a wax brush then wipe the excess with a soft cloth.


Here's our finished piece! We had so much fun creating it. Have you tried using transfers before? What did you love? What did you struggle with? Which brands have you tried? Comment your questions, comments and tips below!

You can browse all of our Transfers here.

Thanks for reading! Please leave us a comment if you have any questions.

Happy painting!

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