barb blairbefore & after basicsbefore and after

before and after basics: stencil tricks

by Barb

hello friends! it’s that time again! today on before and after basics we are going to chat about stencils, and the fantastic possibilities they create in the area of furniture. for this particular project today i chose large letter stencils {found at my local craft store} and created the word “eat” on an old pub table. i would like to add that there are many different ways to do this process, and so many different designs to choose from. the process i demonstrate here is what has worked for me, and therefore i am passing it along to you! also, if you are looking for a great source for stencils and many more tips and tricks …visit stencil1. ok, now that  we have that down let’s create!  barb

CLICK HERE for the full how-to after the jump!

what you’ll need:

*wood table or other wooden furniture

*drop cloth

*sanding sponge

*dust mask

*latex paint{ i used a satin finish}


*blue painters tape

*brushes and/or foam roller

*clear poly

How to:

1. complete all the prep work for your piece. if you are painting an unfinished table {like the one here} sand down until nice and smooth, and if you are using a painted piece make sure that your base coat is nice and fresh and ready to take the stencil. your piece should be smooth, clean and dust free.

2. plan out and mark your design. i chose to put my word off center in the right hand corner of the table… i love things off center! once you are sure of your placement , use blue painters tape to securely hold the stencils in place.

3. apply your paint. here is where you have the liberty to choose your tools. i chose to use a brush because i love the look it gives, but you can also use a foam roller and/or foam stencil brushes as well. they will all work, it is simply a preference thing. i think the most important thing to remember here is to use very little paint to ensure that it will not bleed under the edge of your stencil.

4. once you have filled in all of the cutout areas, gently lift your stencil to view your design. if there are any “issues”, reposition your stencil in the exact same place and add more paint where needed.

5. once you are done painting and filling in your stencil, gently remove the stencil and let paint dry completely.

6. this is an optional step, but one that i did on this particular piece. take your sanding sponge and very lightly sand over the stenciled design to smooth it out, and work it into the wood a bit. wipe area clean with a dry cloth.

7. apply 2-3 coats of water based poly using either a foam roller {my personal choice} or a brush. if you do decide to use a foam roller, make sure that you roll very lightly to ensure the smoothest finish. no air bubbles!

all done! that wasn’t so bad was it!? see ya next week!

* top image was shot by my friend, and local photographer j. aaron greene

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