Crafts & Creativity

DIY: Make A Bar Table with Black and White Pictures

I was looking through some files on my computer and found a picture from one of my first projects two years ago. I wanted to make some furniture for my company (which does theme based parties), “tornasol”,  it occurred to me to make some bar tables, but I didn’t want just any old design.

Eventually my ideas led me to design a table covered in all kinds of different pictures, photos from  all around the world of people, animals, periods in history, fashion, clothing, designs, funny little things.

How to make a bar table with pictures

I remember all the things I thought of, the time I spent looking for the perfect pictures and how much work the carpenter and I put into this,  looking for the right wood, prints, finish, etc., but above all how much I enjoyed the process.

That’s how they look now, those tables were part of some my first events and my first clients. In making them I learned a lot about this technique and designed other things from them, things which I hope to share with you in one of my future posts.

This is the process I used to make these tables, I hope you like it:



  • Plywood
  • Color or black and white photographs, matte
  • Resin to finish and protect the pictures and wood
  • Double sided tape, preferably sheets, not strips
  • Wood Paint (color if you wish)

I used black and white images because they work better with various themes (in events and parties), but you can use color photos if you like, it’s more fun.

1. Paint the wood the color you want, the top (where you are going to put the pictures) and sides, and bottom if you want, but it won’t be visible for the most part.

2. Cut the double sided tape in rectangles the size of the photos, remove the transparent protective layer on one side of the tape and paste it to the photos.

3. On the wood measure and layout the way you want the photos, pencil the lines as guides like a grid. If the table is square it is much easier, my circle tables almost drove me crazy!

4. Following the lines, paste each picture on the wood using the other adhesive side of the double sided tape, arranging them one by one. Take your time, those little mistakes you think don’t matter will drive you crazy later.

5. When the photos are in place and stable, put the resin on little by little, you can use a rubber spatula to make it easier until you have about a quarter-inch of resin, try not to leave bubbles, the air can discolor the photos.

6. Leave the table in a place free of dust, dirt or anything else that can stick to it as it dries.

Wait about 12 hours. You will have a table that will be protected from food, water and scratching.

The table structure I used was made out of  iron and just screwed the top on, but you can use a table that you already have at home and only use this technique on the top, or you can make a collage for the wall if you prefer.

I’ll do another of these projects soon so I can show you pictures of the steps.

Enjoy it, it’s fun and looks great. You can use photos of special moments or pictures you just think are awesome! – Xo, Elba

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