How to Stencil on a Wall

We got a Royal Design Studio’s stencil to make the top of the accent wall in Emilia’s room more fun. They have so many options on their website that it is so hard to narrow it down. I scoured the inter web for tips, and there was very little or no real information. A lot of people just sharing that they did it with no “how-to”.

I first attempted with a roller brush and taping the stencil to the wall. This did not work. There was a lot of bleeding, and it just was awful. Don’t use a roller.

Picture of my first FAILED attempt, I almost gave up after this but I’m glad I pushed through and kept trying because it turned out SO beautiful!! I ended up cutting the stencil so that pattern could go up against the edge of the wall eliminating the big gap.

So, I’m going to share what did work for me, so you can replicate or have more success with your wall stencil project. I’m also really wanting to stencil my front porch. It’s a small area and just looks like it will be really fun for that spot!

Stencil Brush
Stencil (this is where I got mine, this is NOT a commissionable link and I am not affiliated with the company)
Spray Adhesive (optional)
Painters Tape

Step 1: I wanted to use spray adhesive on the back of the stencil but chickened out because I didn’t want it to stick too hard and peel the white paint off the wall. Place your stencil and make sure it is level, and all the way flat against the wall. Then for extra measure use the tape to tape it into place. I ended up having to cute the edge of my stencil to get it to lay up to the wall. I could not find anywhere where it said how to get the pattern up to the edge of the wall. So that was my solution and it worked really well. I also had my husband help set the stencil in place for the first set.

There was originally about an inch or so of plastic stencil on the top edge and the side edge making it impossible to have the pattern go all the way to the edge of the wall. This picture is AFTER I cut off that excess plastic.

Step 2: Get paint on the end of your stencil brush and get rid of any excess paint so that you won’t have any paint bleeding through.

Step 3: Start applying the paint in a blotting motion. Start around the edges of the stencil pattern and then move toward the middle of that area. This also allows for a textured look, which looks amazing in my opinion when using metallic paints. If you’re using a solid flat color you might want to do two coats of paint.

Step 4: leave stencil in place and let area dry before moving the stencil to the next spot.

Step 5: Remove stencil from wall and place in the next place lined up with the pattern. With the stencil I had there are markers showing you where to line up and overlap the previous spot with the new placement. This is one of the reasons you want your paint completely dry to avoid smudging the paint.

Step 6: Repeat the process until you are done!

A few extra tips:

  • When you get to the end of your wall you might have to do more overlap of the pattern than just the small overlap edge thats already provided. When I got to the end of my wall I had to do a full square overlap and then ended up free-handing all the way to the edge of the wall. This makes it so you don’t have to fight with the stencil hanging half on the other wall while trying to hold it up.
  • When doing the bottom section right above the board and batten ledge I did manually press the stencil in to be flush with the wall and juste made sure the stencil was consistently lined up properly. This was tedious but super worth it and really not hard.

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