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Decorative Photo Plate




Tips: Photograph the image you plan to use against a plain background. We photographed pears with crinkled sheets of tissue paper against a sheet of white paper. Not all laser printers are compatible with decals -- check the decal package before you start the project. The finished dish will be food-safe but not dishwasher-safe; wash it by hand.


  • Laser printer
  • Water-slide decal paper for laser printers, available at stationery and crafts stores
  • Scissors
  • Baking sheet
  • Bowl of water
  • Ovenproof porcelain plate
  • Paper towel
  • Blow-dryer


  1. Step 1

    On a computer, reverse the photograph. Print it onto the decal paper, and cut out the image.

  2. Step 2

    Place the decal paper on a baking sheet, and heat in an oven according to the manufacturer's instructions.

  3. Step 3

    Put the decal into the bowl of water. The plastic will begin to curl away from the paper backing. Slip off image, and apply it facedown on the plate, positioning it as desired.

  4. Step 4

    Dampen paper towel with water. Heat the image with the blow-dryer on low, using the paper towel to smooth the image and press out any bubbles or ridges as you work.

  5. Step 5

    When the image is completely smooth and the decal has dried, heat the plate in the oven to set the design, following the manufacturer's instructions.

Martha Stewart Weddings, Winter 2008



Reviews (7)

  • claylady 30 Sep, 2012

    what decal paper was used? Does it have to be a Laser printer?

  • BrinR 24 Aug, 2010

    And apparently Martha doesn?

  • BrinR 24 Aug, 2010

    @mka200 - grammatically your post is poorly written. Minus the obvious - lack of capitalizing and yet at the same time overuse of capitalized words - I am uncertain how one can ?

  • TTwitchell 23 Aug, 2010

    You reverse the image and print it on the decal paper so the ink is on the back of the decal that will adhere to the plate. It's trapped under the decal paper so you're food will not touch it.

  • mka200 23 Aug, 2010

    to CRAFTYQUAKER, your post is poorly written. it isn't clear what you wanna say.
    ZALKHA, i ask the same question, HOW can it be FOOD SAFE if the ink is toxic? i really WOULDNT eat out of that plate. i WOULD though, do it on the OUTSIDE of a MUG, or the outside of a cup and on the saucer, etc.

  • craftyquaker 22 Aug, 2010

    I can't speak for the crafts dept. but I have used laser printer decals on ceramics before. granted, these were fired in a kiln, but the basic premise is that the only thing left behind after the decal is heated is iron, the mineral that gives the laser toner color, and isn't dangerous. that's for kiln, fired, anyway.

  • zalkha 24 Oct, 2008

    It seems fairly easy :-) But does the image come out colored after you heat it in the oven or is it beige colored? and how come it is food safe,since the colors are laser printer colors and not ceramic food safe colors??