Stenciling. My latest obsession.

For many moons now, I’ve been flirting with the idea of wallpapering a surface of the house. For the longest time I couldn’t figure out which wall, much less nail down the sort of pattern I wanted to lose my wallpaper virginity to.  Then I got scared off by all the reasons wallpaper naysayers give for not tackling the project. Primarily, it’s not easy to put up and it’s not easy to take down. And taking into consideration my tendency to obsessively rearrange furniture and redesign my living spaces, something as permanent as wallpaper probably wouldn’t be a good fit for little old me. Stenciling though, stenciling is genius. I can get behind stenciling.

"Morrocan Dream" All-over Stenciling

“Morrocan Dream” All-over Stenciling

For whatever reason, stenciling seems more manageable. I mean, it’s essentially painting, and your girl has painted her fair share of walls before. It also seems to be a cheaper alternative to ordering designer wallpaper. And, if I screw it up, which is likely, it’s much easier to fix or paint over than wallpaper. So stenciling it is!

The lime green wall below is the one I’ve singled out to be my stenciling guinea pig. In the picture, it’s home to a collection of friends’ photos, but I’ve since moved those to the hallway and the bare wall has been screaming for some quirky new treatment, STAT.

greenandturquoiserooms

At first I was toying with the idea of using painter’s tape to create some kind of geometric wall art. Maybe something a-like-a-this….

painter tape design

Or even better, this…

painters tape design

Inevitably, all that searching for inspirational images led me to stenciling, and then all bets were off. Stenciling it would be. I found Cutting Edge Stencils and Royal Design Studio to have the best collection of stencils in the look I’m after. But settling on a pattern might be easier said than done with so many cool options to choose from.

The "modern chevron" from Royal Design Studio is appealing because it ties in with the chevron curtains already taking up real estate in the living room.

The “modern chevron” from Royal Design Studio is appealing because it ties in with the chevron curtains already taking up real estate in the living room.

I like the wild look of the "Peacock Fancy" stencil, also from Royal Design Studio, but for our sized wall, we need something on a larger scale.

I like the wild look of the “Peacock Fancy” stencil, also from Royal Design Studio, but for our wall, we need something on a larger scale.

I love the modern edginess of the chevron, but also the movement and flow of the peacock pattern.  Our design style is a little modern and a little eclectic, so I think after much searching, I’ve decided on the same pattern I would have been likely to choose as a three-year-old…the mermaid.

The "mermaid allover" by Cutting Edge Stencils.

The “mermaid allover” by Cutting Edge Stencils.

I think it does a good job of combining what it is I like about the other two patterns. The mathematical repetition fits in nicely with our modern style, but the cloud-like arches soften it, for an effect that just feels good in all the right places.

The Internets have me believing that stenciling an accent wall is a DIY project that can be completed relatively quickly, and for someone with as little patience as me, “quick” is a word to be cherished as much as “cheap” or “easy” or “fun”. Of course, when I’ve actually started the stenciling process and am growing increasingly frustrated by the painstaking attention to detail it requires, I might be singing another tune. As it stands now though, stenciling and I have a date. If you’re looking for me this weekend, you’ll know where to find me.


5 Comments on “Stenciling. My latest obsession.”

  1. Good luck! I will be waiting to hear how it goes. I have never stenciled a wall and would like to get your opinion.

  2. kmom says:

    I associate stenciling with a craze in the early 90s which was heavy on “country” motifs, so I was hesitant at the prospect. I liked that first pink and jagged blue a lot. Unique! I know for a fact I would not enjoy doing an all over pattern. It would undo me. Best of luck with it. (Glad you decided against wallpaper)

  3. hannahkarena says:

    I’ve been lusting after a stencil project myself now for months. With cyber Monday deals at Cutting Edge Stencils calling my name, I finally forked up the money for the all over paisley. I have a rather drab dresser that I primed white nearly a year ago and never finished that’s going to be stenciled, and after seeing some awesome washer/dryer stenciling projects, I think I’m going to make a go on my own. (They’re in their own little closet, so it’ll be a big beautiful surprise whenever I open up the sliding doors!)

  4. Leah B says:

    I am not one to have too many opinions about home stuff, but I definitely like this. Please perfect it and then you can do my house. Thanks!

  5. […] news! I made good on my promise (to myself) to stencil an accent wall in my living room. (Bless Heath for going along willingly with my wacky, wacky ideas for designing the house.) I […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s