If you’re one of the many people who think their decorative options are limited when it comes to their walls, then stop lamenting your cracked, bland walls and start reading this article!
With the myriad of options available for DIY enthusiasts these days, sprucing up your walls is no longer time consuming, complicated work.
The easiest way to add pizzazz to your walls – and it’s only limited by the boundaries of your imagination! Stencils are fun, cheap, and easy if you have the right tools
What tools do I need for stenciling?
Stenciling kits and all other materials are readily available in home décor or DIY stores. Stencil brushes come in a variety of sizes, and have rounded tips which you load up with stencil paint in a very dry texture, then use to tap into the stencil pattern.
How do I get started?
For beginners it’s advised to forgo all the messy and complex calculation work and go for a simple decorative border along a wall. It can add an instant personality and energy to your home, as well as pull together your entire room’s décor.
Using a pencil, draw a straight line along the length of the wall. This line will demarcate the bottom edge of the stencil.
Position the stencil paper between the edge of the wall and the line, then tape it to the wall or use adhesive.
Create a palette for your stencil paint on your disposable plate.
Use a brush that is smaller than the design opening you are going to paint. Remember to start with the lightest color first. Dip the brush into the paint, swirl it on a paper towel to remove excess, then apply it to the stencil.
Rub the paint in circular motions from the outside of the stencil towards the middle to create a smooth effect; dabbing the paint on with the brush perpendicular to the wall creates a speckled effect. To color into the center of the design, pull paint in from the edges, also using a vigorous tapping motion.
When the design is fully filled in, remove the stencil from the wall move it horizontally to create evenly spaced sets of designs along the wall border. Any mistakes can be erased with a soft art eraser or simply painted over.
Remove as much stenciling paint from the brush as possible before applying it to the stencil! Flooding the stencil with excess paint will cause it to seep under the stencil, thus destroying your design. Also use a different brush for each color, or thorough clean brushes when switching colors.
Make your own stencils
Can’t find a stencil design you like, or are you feeling extremely hands-on today? Creating your own stencil is as easy as child’s play, literally!
What do I need to make my own stencils?
How do I get started?
First, place your tracing paper over your design, then trace it out carefully with a pencil until you’re satisfied with how it looks.
Then place a second sheet of tracing paper over the original, and trace it again but this time trace it with ‘bridges’ – these are what hold the entire form of the stencil together. You should be drawing separate shapes that do not touch each other so that when you cut them out, the paper remains whole, just with a shape cut out from its middle.
When your bridges are complete, go over your drawing with a felt tipped marker, and then glue the bridged version over a piece of cardboard with the rubber cement or spray adhesive. This form of glue bonds with a very sheer layer and does not cause the paper to buckle or moisten too much.
Cut a piece of stencil paper that is about 2 inches larger than your design and tape it to the cardboard with the masking tape. With a craft knife, cut the stencil paper but do not damage the cardboard backing! Cut by holding the knife perpendicularly, start from the interior and work your way outwards, and apply steady pressure using one clean cut per line.