Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Painting inside the Lines.

I recently had a referral to someone looking to have me do a paint job in their nursery as they're expecting their first baby! She sent me this picture from Pottery Barn, wanting me to stencil one accent wall with this scallop/ribbon design. While I am more so used to free style murals and artistic painting and have never actually used a stencil, I figured my OCD would help me with something like this...turns out the first time at something will always be harder than expected...

Luckily, my client had found this blog posting about how to recreate this stencil and it ended up being a LOT of help. Check it out here. I bought blank stencil sheets and invested in a heated stencil cutter at Micheal's as well. This tool took some practice to master as it melts the plastic to cut it, making it easy to botch the design. Be patient with it and be prepared with back up stencil sheets (mylar).

I scaled out the design and made a CAD elevation drawing of the wall as it has a large window making for some difficult planning on scale and repeat of the stencil. From the elevation I determined I would make my stencil fit a 10" by 15" sheet. After printing the design (on 2 sheets to fit) I lined them up and traced it onto the mylar with a sharpie.

Then I used the fancy burner tool to cut out the design...

They had already done the base coat of Benjamin Moore's Iced Lavender and I took the Pearlized White to to the stencil.

While the level was mentioned in the directions on that blog, I canNOT stress the need for the level enough. Every time I took up the stencil and taped it back down, I put the level up to ensure all the scallops run perfectly vertical.

As the stencil was used at least 75 times on this one wall, the paint really caked up on it so I did a lot of freehand touch-up with a 1/4" paintbrush to ensure they really did look consistent.

Those windows were pretty tricky but patience was key and I love how much it looks like wallpaper!

With a happy client, I am pleased to say that my first venture into stenciling and having to stay within an actual restricted line (my stencil) turned out quite successfully! I can't wait for them to send me pictures with all their furnishings and the lil tot herself, Olivia!

Here's to more challenges like this one in the future! Bring it!

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