Introduction: 2 Ways to Transfer Logo / Photo Onto Wood With Inkjet or Laser Printer DIY

About: XDIY with Itzik

In this Instructable, I'll show 2 ways I'm using to transfer text, logo, or photo onto wood. Each way can be seen in my videos and also in the steps described below.

The transfer is possible by using Inkjet and / or Laser printers as you can see later.

One method takes few seconds, but has low transfer quality. The other way takes longer, but has much better transfer quality.

You can choose the transfer method, according to the purpose of the transfer. As you'll see in my descriptions below, sometimes low quality is good enough.

You're welcome to visit my YouTube Channel, subscribe, and also watch my additional projects. Don't forget to click the 'bell' button in order to get new videos notification.

Thank you! :)


See the tools and materials of each method, in the relevant method steps below.

Step 1: Long Method - High Quality Transfer

The first method has much higher quality, but takes more steps than the second one I'll show later in this Instructable.

It takes between 10 minutes to 24 hours depends on the tools you decide to use, as you'll see below.

I'm using this method when I need high quality transfer of my logo, or high quality photo.

You can watch the video above and read the later steps.

Long Method Tools:

  • Inkjet or Laser printer
  • Scissors
  • Paint brush
  • Wet Mop
  • Hair Dryer (optional)

Long Method Materials:

General List of tools I'm using -

Step 2: Long Method - Preparing the Image for Printing

Before printing the photo you like to transfer to the wood, you'll need to flip it horizontally, in your photo editor, since that the photo is being placed with the printed side down on the wood.

Step 3: Long Method - Printing the Image

This method of transfer, can be done using both Laser printer or Inkjet printer.

In this case, I used an Inkjet printer which I have at home.

If you have a Laser printer, it can bring better results of the transfer and it's the recommended printer mentioned on the material I was using for the transfer (Foto Transfer Potch).

After printing, it's recommended to cut the printed page around the image using scissors, so you have less paper to remove later.

Step 4: Long Method - Material: Foto Transfer Potch

There are some optional materials which can be used to transfer the printed image to the wood surface.

I'm using "Foto Transfer Potch" for now, but I know it's also possible to make such transfers using "Mod Podge" or using "Polycrylic Protective Finish" (I didn't try the last two yet).

You can see some links at the materials list or just try one of these materials or similar ones you have at home, and test which one gives you the best results.

Step 5: Long Method - Using the Transfer Material (1)

As a first step, you should spread the transfer material you choosed to use, on both the paper and wood.

Step 6: Long Method - Using the Transfer Material (2)

Step 7: Long Method - Placing the Printed Paper

Place the coated picture side down on the wood.

Step 8: Long Method - Removing Leftovers

Smoothly press the entire picture on the wood, and later remove the materials leftovers using a cardboard or a credit card.

Step 9: Long Method - Let It Dry

After the image is well placed, it should get dry.

You can choose to wait about 24 hours, or blow dry using a hair dryer for 10 minutes. As you can see, I improvised a stand for the hair dryer using a stool, to be directly on the paper, instead of holding it. :)

*** If you use a hair dryer, leave the heated paper to be cool, before moving to the next step.

Step 10: Long Method - Removing the Paper (1)

After drying, moisten the paper layer.

When the paper is soaked, rub the paper gently.

Be careful so the printed image won't be removed with the paper!

Step 11: Long Method - Removing the Paper (2)

Step 12: Long Method - Final Drying

After cleaning the paper, use hair dryer to dry the wet surface.

Step 13: Long Method - Using the Transfer Material Again

After drying you'll see some white places appear.

You can cover the transferred place again using the transfer material you used before, or using another wood clear protective topcoat, in order to protect the photo. This should also remove the appeared white places.

Step 14: Long Method - Done!

The transfer is done.

This was my first transfer using this method, on a real project. I think that the result could have been better using a Laser printer, but I think it's good enough as is.

Note: If you used only a black print and not color one, and there are some parts which weren't transferred well, you can sometimes try to fix it locally using a black pen / marker pen.

Step 15: Quick Method - Low Quality Transfer

This second method has a lower quality, but as you'll see it's much faster.

Depending on your requirements, it's sometimes good enough to use it. In this case, the transfer doesn't have to look perfect, since the purpose is to engrave it on the wood anyway.

You can watch the video above and read the later steps.

Note that unlike the previous video of the long method, which focuses only on the image transfer, this video is of a full project and has only a short part of the quick transfer.

You can watch the full video or jump directly to 3min 20sec.

Quick Method Tools:

  • Inkjet printer
  • Scissors

Quick Method Materials:

  • Wood piece
  • Alcohol pads (or Alcohol with separate cotton wool)

General List of tools I'm using -

Step 16: Quick Method - Preparing the Image for Printing

As I described in the long method transfer, before printing the photo you like to transfer to the wood, you'll need to flip it horizontally, in your photo editor, since that the photo is being placed with the printed side down on the wood.

You can see the Image I printed, in this step.

Step 17: Quick Method - Printing the Image

In this case, I also used an Inkjet printer. I'm not sure how this transfer method will work using a laser printed page. If you have any knowledge here, please leave comment and I can update the guide :)

Anyway, Inkjet printer gave good enough results for my case of use.

Step 18: Quick Method - Using Alcohol Pads

In order to make a quick transfer without waiting for drying as in the previous transfer method, I used some alcohol pads I had at home.

If you don't have alcohol pads, you can just use 70% alcohol from a bottle, with separate cotton wool etc.

I know that it's possible to use also Acetone for such transfer, but I didn't try it yet.

Step 19: Quick Method - Transfering the Text to the Wood

I put the printed page on top of the wood in the required position, and put the alcohol pads, over the paper until it was wet and the text was transferred satisfactorily.

If required, you can tape the paper to the wood, so it won't move during the transfer, but it's also helps to raise the paper during the transfer from time to time, to see if it was transferred well.

Step 20: Quick Method - Done!

This is the result of the quick transfer.

As you can see, it's not so clear like the long method, but good enough for my use in this case, since the purpose was to engrave the text on the wood anyway.

Step 21: Summary & Videos

Thank you for reading! I hope you like my Instructable, let me know what do you think, in the comments.

It's recommended to watch the videos as well, for better understanding of the transfer process.

  1. Long Method - High quality transfer -
  2. Quick Method - Lower quality transfer - (Starting from 3min 20sec)

You're welcome to visit my YouTube Channel, subscribe, and also watch my additional projects.

Thank you!

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