Friday, September 30, 2011

Wall Stencil Finito!

I am on a roll with the dining area project. I am happy to say that the most time consuming portion is finally done: the stencilling!

Stencilling has been popular lately in the DIY world and there is good reason. It can be beautiful, impactful, less expensive than wallpaper, more customizable than wallpaper, and easier to re-do or remove than wallpaper. Back in the spring I came across an article on Casa Sugar that featured this Moroccan design that was used for a bathroom makeover:
See article here.

I fell in love with the technique right away and I knew that one day I would have to try it in my own home. The opportunity presented itself fairly quickly with the "naked wall" that we had in the dining area of our kitchen. Here is the mock up I made of the wall:

I loved the geometric pattern (with a little embellishment) of the inspiration photo above, so I ordered something somewhat similar for myself. I love some of the more elaborate choices too, but this being a small space, needs a relatively simple pattern.

I updated on Tuesday that "phase 1" was done (the picture frames), and that phase 2 was started (the painting). Here is the blank slate of a wall that I had on Tuesday (minus the picture frames):
That same day, a lovely UPS man came and delivered my stencil:
I went with Small Moorish Trellis from Royal Design Studio.

I had an awful lot going on for Tuesday, so I begrudgingly had to leave things be until the next day. As soon as my little tornadoes went down for their naps around noon, I whipped out the paint and got started. I mixed together the 2 wall colors for a tone on tone look, erring on the side of the lighter paint:
 There are a few recommended supplies for stencilling a wall including stencil brushes and spray adhesive. Being too much of a cheapskate to buy them right away, I went with some painter's tape and a 40 cent foam brush from Menards. I figured that I could always try it the cheapo way first and if I wasn't happy with the results, buy the fancy brushes and adhesive.

Finally it was time to get to work. I grabbed my stencil, some tape, and a tape measure. I found the halfway point between the top and bottom of the dark panel and centered the stencil on it:
I knew I wanted a thin coat of paint, so I dipped my brush in the paint, and dabbed it on some scrap paper to thin the paint out:
 Then I got to blotting:
I found that the best and cleanest way to stencil the wall was to always use a blotting motion versus a stroking motion. When I blotted the paint on with the brush perpendicular to the wall (and little paint), it came out the best:
 The first full stencil all painted, just waiting to be revealed:
I was nervous to pull the 1st stencil off because I was worried about bleeding or smudging the paint. I cautiously removed it and there was my first repeat, rather perfect and not smudged at all:
So I continued to blot:
 Blot some more. . . :
 . . . and more:
 I blotted until I had all of the non-edge pieces stencilled in and my poor arm was rather tired:
By the time I was done, both kids were up so I had to call it a day for the painting project. As you can see in the photos, the bulk of the area was stencilled, but the edges were left to be done still. I knew this part would probably be the most time consuming.

Once Thursday's nap time came around, I got to finishing off the edges. As anticipated, this took the most amount of time. I don't know what the suggested method for painting edges and corners is (I didn't read that far into the instructions). I went ahead and cut up the stencil to get it finished. This of course makes it difficult to use the stencil for future projects, but I only planned on using it once anyway. Here is the cut up mess once I was done:
 Here are my beautiful corners and edges all stencilled in:
The air vent was a pain in the butt. the screws were stripped on it, so I chose to paint around it instead of trying to remove it. It turned out really nicely anyway:
This took a while so both kids got up before I finished. I kept them at bay by letting them eat lunch in the living room while I wrapped things up. Here is the full view of the finished product:
Pardon the mess, this was taken pre-cleanup.

I LOVE how it turned out! You would never know I kind of cut corners by not using the recommended tools.

It is subtle enough that it doesn't crowd the small space, yet it manages to be very noticeable amongst all the similar tones in the room. To my relief, the hubby loved how it turned out; I was worried he would find the whole thing a little too ornate, but he didn't at all.

The final step to completing the wall is to add trim along the barrier between the 2 colors. I plan to run to Lowes for some today actually. Hopefully I'll have it all installed by the end of the weekend.

With the wall complete, I certainly have a few more projects planned for the kitchen including a new light fixture for the dining area, DIY roman shades for the windows, and a console for the opposite end to hold the garbage, recycling, and shoes by the entryway. I'm not sure when I will get around to those, but it is really nice to have at least this part *almost* finished.

Coincidentally on Tuesday, my favorite DIY blog Young House Love did a stencilling project too. They didn't get it done in 1 day either - stencils are indeed no joke dude. They went in a different direction than my geometric pattern. They did a whimsical , more natural design and I love how it looks too:
They also did a tone on tone look with grey, but they used an accent color for added interest. I considered doing this myself with the dots in my design, but I think it would have been too much for the space. It looks great in the YHL office though!

Here are the previous posts related to this project if you missed them:

1 comment:

  1. Great Job! Im thinking of ordering the same stencil and am spurred on by your success!



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