Applying Vinyl Decals to Canvas

Trying to apply vinyl decals to surfaces that aren’t meant for them can be difficult and often results in a disappointing outcome. This is why we recommend using canvas when applying vinyl decals. 

Canvas is the perfect surface for vinyl decals because it’s durable and easy to work with. Plus, it gives your vinyl decal a professional look that’s sure to impress anyone who sees it.

However, you don’t just pick any old canvas and start sticking your vinyl decal on it. There are a few things you need to do first to ensure that your vinyl decal will look its best on canvas. This article is a comprehensive guide that will show you how to apply vinyl decals to canvas like a pro.

What This Article Covers:

What You Need

applying vinyl decals to canvas

Whether you want to create custom-made wall decals or simply want to add a personal touch to your home décor, you need the following supplies:

  • Canvas
  • Spray adhesive, paint, or mod podge
  • Scrapper, tennis ball, or old credit card
  • Vinyl
  • The design you want to transfer
  • Clear contact paper

Before we show you how to apply vinyl decals to canvas, let’s first talk about choosing the right vinyl. The market is flooded with different types of vinyl, and it can be hard to choose the right one. Don’t worry, we’re here to help.

The best vinyl for applying to canvas is thin and has a matte finish. It’s specifically designed for stenciling and comes with a low-tack adhesive that makes it easy to work with. Plus, it doesn’t leave any residue when it’s removed.

Working with thick vinyl can be difficult and it’s more likely to rip or tear when you’re trying to apply it to canvas. Glossy vinyl is also not ideal because it can reflect light, which makes it hard to see the design.

Step One: Preparing the Canvas

This is the most important step in the process because it determines whether or not your vinyl decal sticks to the canvas. If you don’t prepare the surface properly, your vinyl decal will peel off eventually.

how to put vinyl decal on canvas

Start by cleaning the canvas with a damp cloth to remove any dirt or dust. Let the canvas dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Once the canvas is clean and dry, you need to rough up the surface a bit so the vinyl decal has something to grip. You can do this by using a scraper, tennis ball, or old credit card. Just make sure you don’t damage the canvas in the process.

Another way to prepare your canvas is to paint it. This is especially important if you’re applying vinyl decals in cold weather, and you want an all-weather product. Just make sure the paint is completely dry before moving on.

You can also use an adhesive spray or modge podge to prepare the canvas. We recommend an adhesive spray because it’s quick and easy to use. Plus, it provides a strong bond that keeps your vinyl decal in place. This is why it’s used when applying vinyl decals to glass.

Step Two: Applying The Vinyl Decal

Now that the canvas is prepared, you’re ready to apply the vinyl decal. Using clear contact paper makes this process a lot easier because you can see where you’re putting the vinyl.

Start by peeling off the backing of the contact paper and then attach it to the canvas. Make sure the contact paper is smooth so that there are no bubbles.

Then, peel off the backing of the vinyl decal and attach it to the contact paper. Use a scraper or old credit card to smooth out any bubbles. This is also a step you shouldn’t forget if you want to apply window decals without bubbles.

Once the vinyl decal is in place, carefully peel off the contact paper. If done correctly, the vinyl decal should stay in place.

how to put vinyl decal on canva

Note: Before using clear contact paper, stick it to your clothes several times. This reduces stickiness and makes sure the contact paper doesn’t ruin your project

Remember to place a hard book or something similar under the canvas while you’re working. This makes it easier to apply the vinyl decal and prevents the canvas from tearing.

Burnishing the vinyl is also an important step. You can do this with a cotton ball or by using your fingers. This ensures the vinyl adheres to the canvas and prevents air bubbles.

Your Vinyl Decal Won’t Stick? Here Are Some Tips

If you’ve tried following the steps outlined above and your vinyl decal still won’t stick, don’t worry. There are a few things you can try to get it to work.

Rub Harder

If you’re not applying enough pressure when you’re trying to adhere the vinyl decal to the canvas, it won’t stick. Try using a scraper or old credit card to rub the vinyl into place.

Use Heat

You can also try using a heat gun or hair dryer to warm up the adhesive on the back of the vinyl decal. This makes it easier to apply the decal and prevents it from peeling off later. However, avoid using too much heat because it can damage the vinyl.

applying vinyl decals to canva

Use a Stiffener

Another way to get the vinyl to adhere to the canvas is to use a stiffener. This makes the vinyl more rigid which prevents it from wrinkling. You can also use a stiffener to get decals to stick on textured walls.

As you can see, applying vinyl decals to canvas isn’t as difficult as it might seem. Just follow the steps outlined above, and you’ll be able to apply vinyl decals like a pro.

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