Sunday, December 2, 2012

My First Stenciled Frieze

I had a busy weekend stenciling the frieze in our master bedroom. I was probably up and down the ladder a zillion times—OK, not that many, but it felt like it. I'm exhausted.
The particular stencil design I used was a three-layer design—Mission Gatsby Border Stencil with Flower & Leaves—from American Home Stencils.

I followed the suggestions from Amy Miller in her book "Stenciling the Arts & Crafts Home." Whenever I had questions or problems, I'd go back to the book to figure out what she suggested; it worked every time. I recommend her book without reservation.

I started the process by applying masking tape bits and marking on the registration spots. This was a pretty long process because once I finished a wall I might decide to move it over an inch or two to make the design suit the wall better and then I'd have to redo it. There is really only so much you can figure out just with measurements. Needless to say, it was not a fun process. But, once I was done, I could turn my attention to applying the different stencil layers without a lot of thought.

I decided to do each stencil layer separately, so I did the full circuit around the room before applying the next layer. (Normally, when working at a table I do all the layers on one repeat before moving on.) It was a total of 44 repeats of the design and took about 4 hours per circuit. So, it took about 16 hours over the weekend.
Stencil First Pass
Stencil Second Pass
Stencil Third Pass
I have a few smudges to clean up/paint over once it all dries. (They were not due to problems with the stencil, but from getting it on my hands from the paintstiks and not realizing it until I got a spot on the wall.)

As an aside, while cruising through my photo files, I found a good inspiration photo for my master bedroom in Sherwin William's 1910 "Your Home and Its Decoration" style guide.


  1. It's lovely! Well worth all that time and effort and trips up and down the ladder :-) Thanks for sharing.

  2. Nice job! You will be enjoying it for years.