Personalize your space with stencils

September 29, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Want to decorate a room, but short on cash? How about using stencils! Liven up any room with this great, inexpensive tool. Designer Shannon Kaye shares her stenciling tips.Shannon's advice

People are turning to their homes to create comfort when there seems to be so much chaos in the world. People are looking for unique ways to personalize their spaces and create comfortable environments. And these days we all need to be a little more resourceful about it; for the economy, the environment, our sanity?

Stencils aren't just for kitchens and kids rooms anymore. With stenciling you can personalize your space. It takes very little money for a lot of impact.

You can find all kinds of stencils in a variety of designs, they can be expensive, and you don't always get exactly the style or size that you want.

My early career focused on decorative painting, and I found that it was hard to find beautiful stencils for my clients. So I started designing them and cutting them myself.

Most decorative painters use hot knives and special plastic, but I was a starving artist, so I bought some posterboard and a utililty knife at the drug store.

But they don't have to be that complicated. You can totally transform a space with a simple stencil that you create yourself!

What you need

Posterboard (I like the coated kind with a grid on it)

  • Utility knife (I like these thin art or craft knives better than utility knives)
  • Pencil
  • Shapes around the house that help you draw your stencil ie. Ruler, cups, tape, toys,
  • Tracing paper (to create a shape from a catalog or wallpaper- anything)

How to do it

  • Draw your pattern
  • Cut it out
  • Stencil it
  • Tape your stencil to the wall
  • Using a stippling brush, dip just the tips of the bristles in paint
  • Dab the extra off on a paper towel
  • Tap (stipple) the stencil with the brush to fill in the shape
  • Remove the stencil and reveal your design!


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