19 November 2015

How to stencil a chair with Chalk Paint®

I have been dying to show you my new video tutorial about stencilling. My stencil designs and the way I work with them is quite free and, I hope, liberating!

In this two-part tutorial, I combine two of my stencils in random overlapping patterns to transform an old dining chair. It’s a fairly standard splat back chair with a good central panel for stencilling on. I love playing around with my stencils and I want to point out that just because you’re using a stencil with a particular design, it doesn’t have to inhibit your own creativity – mix them up, take the elements you like or those which are right for a particular piece from each, and see what you come up with. It's all about overlaying different patterns to come up with something unique.

For this particular project, I’m using my Lavender stencil and overlapping it with my Classical Bird – an idea inspired by one of my Stockists which I liked so much I had to try out for myself!

Before I even get started on a project, I like to sketch out the look I’m going for. For this tutorial, I decided to use Duck Egg Blue from the Chalk Paint® palette as my base colour. Although it can be tempting to stencil against a white background, it can be quite stark and using a mid-tone, fairly neutral colour will make the pattern sing out, especially if you’re using Old White in the pattern, as I do in this piece.

First, I paint the chair. You’ll see I tip it upside down whilst I’m painting it, as this makes the job so much easier. I’m using the larger of my Pure Bristle Brushes to apply the Duck Egg Blue, and this helps bring out the texture of the wood.

Once the first coat is dry, I can start stencilling. I already have a good idea of where I want the pattern to be, so I rely on my judgement when it comes to positioning the stencil.

Using sponge rollers makes overlapping stencil patterns a quick and very straightforward process. (For smaller, more detailed designs, I’ll use my Stencil Brush to stipple the pattern on). I’ve just brought out two sizes of Sponge Roller and I use both in the video. Don’t overload the roller with paint, and be gentle but firm. Remember, if the finish is denser in some areas and lighter in others that can work very well.

Although I’ve a good idea of what I want to achieve, I don’t always end up following my sketch in every detail. Random can be good sometimes, go with the flow and enjoy seeing where you may end up. Once I’m happy with the design, I add my Clear Wax and that’s really all there is to it!

I've shared Part 1 of my tutorial above, you can find Part 2 on my YouTube channel.

Also - I must tell you – I’m very excited because tomorrow I’ll be doing a demonstration with Kirstie Allsopp again, at the Handmade Christmas Fair in Manchester. She’s going to be joining me at my stand where I'll be teaching how to create a very special Christmas table runner with stencils and stamps (so easy and quick and no sewing involved!). I’ll be sharing pictures and tips in a few weeks, so watch this space!

Yours, Annie

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