INSTRUCTIONS FOR BASIC WALL STENCILING
These instructions will take you step-by-step through your stenciling project.
Please read them all before you start your project!
Very important: PRIME your surfaces and build layers to STOP BLEEDING!
The stencil itself does not cause bleeding, incorrect preperation and technique does.
Work out your technique and color combinations on a sample board first.
It is always a good idea to make a sample. Use a wall in the garage, a piece of cardboard,
or even an old box as your sample surface. Make sure you like your colour combinations
and are comfortable with your stenciling technique before hitting the real wall!
Make sure your walls are clean, dust free and in good condition. Any cracks or chips should
be repaired, filled, primed and painted prior to stenciling. All base coats should be fully dried
for at least 24 hours prior to stenciling. You can stencil over latex house paint, faux finishes,
plaster textures, wood, furniture, paper, fabric and even some wallpaper.
Position your stencil on the wall where you like it, and tape it to the wall with few pieces of low tack painters tape. Do not use regular white masking tape because it’s way too sticky for most painted surfaces and will likely pull off the base paint when you remove your stencil. You can also use a spray adhesive to achieve even cleaner edges.
Load your foam roller by rolling it over the paint a few times until it absorbs most or all of it.
Use only dense foam rollers with rounded edges.
2. Sample board (poster board, cardboard etc)
3. Latex or acrylic paints, including some basecoat paint
4. Dense foam roller with rounded ends, stencil brushes, spray
5. Paint tray or a large styrofoam plate
6. Low tack painter’s tape, Low tack repositionable craft Spray adhesive. (A must when using spray paint.)
Spray paints are the quickest and easiest way to use your stencil without risk of damage from brushes or roller. Simply tape your stencil into position with low tack masking tape or add a fine coat of low tack craft repositionable to the reverse of your stencil. Take care to mask off a large area around your item to avoid over spray getting into other areas. Then build small coats up gradually to stop bleed under the stencil edges. Take care if you are not using low tack spray that you dont blow paint under the stencil by spraying at an angle that could allow this, direct your spray on the same plane its mounted keeping it straight at all times. We always recommend using low tack spray for paint spray applications.
GETTING STARTED - ROLLER
Roll the stencil with your roller using light to medium pressure. Excessive pressure may cause
paint bleeding under the stencil. Be careful not to roll over the outside edges of the stencil! We
design most of our stencils with at least a 10/15mm frame to give you some rolling room. Strategically placing low tack masking tape on the narrowest edges can help prevent “roll-overs”.
You can easily check how you’re doing by carefully un-taping and lifting one corner of the stencil and taking a peek.
Do you like what you see? Is it enough pressure or can it use a little more paint? If it’s too pale, just put the stencil back and roll it a couple more times back and forth, slightly adding more pressure. When stenciling lighter colours over darker colours, you may need 2 coats to achieve good coverage. Let the 1st coat dry for a couple of minutes and then roll the stencil again. Now remove the stencil and enjoy your artwork! A note for the impatient: Don’t just yank the taped stencil off the wall! It’s always a good idea to remove it somewhat slowly so the tape doesn’t accidentally pull off any background paint. Continue stenciling by repositioning your design until all walls/repeats are done. No need to clean the stencil in between repeats. Each stencil is good for many repeats before it will need to be cleaned. It’s time to clean the stencil when your paint build-up starts to compomise the design.
You can also use stencil brushes to stencil your design although it is much faster with a
roller or spray For smaller, more intricate designs, multi-coloured and shaded designs, it’s better to use a stencil brush. You’ll need to dedicate a separate brush for each colour.
Load your brush with paint by simply squeezing a dollop of acrylic paint onto a foam plate or a into a paint tray, then dipping just the tip of your brush into the paint. Distribute the paint on the brush tip by doing a few circles on a foam plate. Now, lightly rub off some paint onto a folded paper towel and you’re ready to stencil. Your brush should have very little paint on it. Remember, less paint is better for stenciling! It’s best to use a dabbing motion or a light circular motion with your brush. Just dab or swirl in a light sweeping circular motion, covering all of the design. You can add various colors where needed by dabbing with a different colour next to a first one. Create dimension with shading by adding a darker color like Raw Umber acrylic to the edges of the openings. Just make sure to avoid a straight sweeping motion towards the edges of the openings, since that can force the paint under the stencil and mess up your work. If you accidentally break one of the “ bridges” in the design while stenciling or
cleaning, you can easily fix it by attaching small pieces of clear packing tape on both sides of
We hope your projects turn out great!
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