Making a Big Impact in a Small Space with Wall Stenciling

before

Megan’s bathroom remodel inspired me to spruce up one of my own. I have a half bath that really needed some love and attention. And how do you make a big impact in a small bathroom? My first thought, wallpaper. There are so many amazing, modern choices right now. However, wallpaper would involve not only money, but sanding the texture off my wall and getting someone to help me apply it. And the biggest hurdle. Trying to convince my husband to add back wallpaper when I made him take it all down when we moved in. Wallpaper not an option for me. But I loved the idea of having a patterned accent wall. And then Megan saved the day by suggesting wall stenciling. Brilliant! I would still get the “wow” factor I am looking for. I think I definitely did!

After

Let’s be real here. Wall stenciling looks a little time consuming. And it was! It took approximately 15 hours. Not to worry, after tackling this project without any research on techniques, there are some time savers I would try for the next time I stencil.

The first thing I did was create my stencil.  I bought some plain stenciling plastic at a craft store to cut my stencil out of.  I printed the moroccan design from my computer and then taped it down to the plastic. Lastly, I cut out the design with my exacto blade.

Time Saver:
As hard as it is for me to admit my husband was right. He was PROBABLY right in suggesting I cut out as many as possible on one sheet. I am guessing I could have had twelve up on a sheet versus the six I cut out.

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Next I was ready to put some paint on the wall! I used double-sided tape to stick my stencil to the wall. My plan was to start in the upper left and move across and down.

Even though it worked out fairly well, I quickly realized how awful it would have been if the pattern didn’t line up on the other side.

Time Saver:
I would use a level before each time I taped down the stencil. I also would have done the top first and then worked my way down doing one line at a time left to right.

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Once the stencil was lined up I dabbed the paint on with a firm stenciling brush.  I used a dotting motion versus a brushing motion.

Time Saver:
My biggest mistake was using just a typical wall paint. There are stenciling creams out there that I am sure would have worked much better. (I have been eyeballing these stenciling creams at Royal Designs) I had a lot of issues with splattering underneath my stencil and I also had to go back and coat everything twice.

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I am very happy how the stenciling turned out. I would love to do it somewhere else in my house, but I am hoping the next time I try it, I can spend a little less time doing it.

lindsay

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