Fun With Stencils!


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I absolutely love the way stencils look on walls, but I do not have the talent to paint one in place. I figured the only way I would ever have one is if I paid big bucks to an artist. I don’t have any big bucks; in fact, I am kind of short in the department of small bucks. Luckily, Simple Stencil has high quality merchandise for a very affordable price. Even more fortunate, these stencils are super simple to apply! I put one up in just minutes.

Step one — I read the directions. They come with pictures so it was super easy.

Step two — I applied the test stencil they sent me to the wall between my window sill and my whiteboard (I did have to take the whiteboard down, but the window sill stayed in place.)

After I applied the practice stencil it was time for the main event.  The photo below shows you all of the tools and equipment you’ll have to gather to do a quality job.

stencil, rubbing tool (included in kit), and tape

Step Three — Find the center of the area where you’ll be applying your stencil, then tape it to the wall by the top edge only.  Now, walk across the room and look at your stencil.  Is it straight?  Is it perfectly centered?  Make any corrections necessary and check again. 

I live in the Pacific Northwest where the sun is rare, and here it is peeking in my window right where I want to work. I considered being annoyed with it, and then realized it was wonderful. Keep your eye on that strip of light and it will help you gauge exactly how long this project took.

Step Four: Flip your stencil up using the tape as a hinge.  (You do not need to tape it into this position.  I did so only because I couldn’t hold the stencil up and take the photograph.)

back side of stencil

Step Five — carefully peel the backing of the stencil. Do this slowly to make certain none of the stencil adheres to the backing. If the stencil should stick, recover the area with the backing, then even more slowly uncover it, bending the backing a bit more sharply to encourage release.

Step Six — Once the backing is removed hand smooth the stencil onto the wall. The backing is tacky but easily movable.

Step Seven — Using a Popsicle stick, tongue depressor, or the handy-dandy plastic scraper included, firmly rub over the semi-transparent backing. This will help transfer your stencil from the paper to the wall. Rub from the center outward, using the applicator like a squeegee to remove any air bubbles or wrinkles.  Since there is only one of me, I could not photograph the smoothing process, however, I took this close up shot so you could clearly see the stencil pressed against the wall.

Now, lets talk about my wall.  Obviously it is textured.  I wondered how much trouble that would cause me in applying this stencil.  The answer is, none.  The stencil went up easily and is secure.

Step Eight — This step is one I learned while doing the test application. The tape I used to hold the stencil to the wall is much tackier than the stick’em on the semi-transparent stencil sheet. When I was trying to gently and carefully peel the facing off the stencil, I also had to stop and hassle with the tape. To eliminate that issue, just pull the tape free of the wall and tuck it out of the way before you began the peel.

Step Nine — Cautiously peel the semi-transparent backing off the stencil. Work slowly. And watch the letter edges. If they stick to the facing rather than the wall, back up a bit (I love this tacky paper, nothing can slip out of alignment!) and give that piece an extra rub. If it still sticks to the paper, back up again and catch just the merest edge of the letter with your fingernail and hold it to the wall. Once the edge sticks, the remainder will as well.

Step 10 — if you have a large stencil you will want to trim the backing as you peel. I accidentally allowed the tacky backing to touch the applied stencil, and I had to again carefully peel it off because the stencil was perfectly willing to transfer back onto the paper.

backing trimmed at halfway point

Once you have completely removed the semi-transparent facing paper, take your finger (nothing hard or sharp) and gently rub over your stencil securing any loose edges to the wall.

Note the movement of the sunbeam. It took me about 20 minutes to complete this project. I think it looks great.

TheSimpleStencil.Com, has generously provided me with a $30.00 gift certificate for one of my lucky readers.  If you want to be entered in the drawing, visit TheSimpleStencil.Com and tell me what it is that you think would look great on your walls.  You can also check out The  Simple Stencil on Facebook where you’ll receive special offers not available anywhere else.  They’ve got one up now for free product I just may be taking advantage of.  And don’t forget to follow them on Twitter to make certain you receive up to the minute news on sales, specials and secret discounts. For ideas, special promotions and other news, sign up to receive The Simple Stencil newsletter. Their latest one features a project I just may tackle next!

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In The Bedroom

bedroomHa!  I bet you were expecting something different with a title like that.  This is one of the three bedrooms in our new home.  As you can see, they are plenty roomy.

One bedroom will house the music equipment.  Right now whenever company comes we shift the keyboard, bongo drums and 47 trumpets & coronets to the living room. We won’t have to do that anymore.

The other bedroom will be for guests.  What a concept.  I haven’t had a dedicated guest room in my home in over 20 years!  And of course the master bedroom will be ours!

Check out the electrical outlets.  One of the things I really love about this house is the abundant plug ins! No more unsightly extension cords strung all over the room!   And the heat vent isn’t in the floor so one doesn’t have to worry about people stepping on it and squishing the slats closed.  It also doesn’t appear to be in a place I’d want to put a piece of furniture — except maybe a book case.  Hmmmmm.

And I don’t know whether you noticed or not from the other photos, but every single window in the house already has venetian blinds. I am not a great fan of curtains. I love light filled rooms and unlike curtains, venetian blinds can be fully retracted so they don’t block any light.

As you can tell I am getting pretty excited about our move.  Blogging about it helps me expel some of the excitement.  Wait until you see the rest of the house.