How To Stencil - Furniture



What you will need:

Furniture Stencil

Dense Foam Roller or Stencil brush


Scrap paper/card

Masking tape (painters tape)

Paint Tray

Clear varnish or furniture wax finish


If you’re new to stenciling, we always recommend you practice first to perfect your technique. Just use a scrap bit of paper, or an old pizza box if you have a large stencil.


Secure your stencil with masking tape (painters tape) at each corner of the stencil. Before you start have a think about how your stencil pattern will look repeated across your surface area. Will part of the design be broken? We would recommend in most cases that you start in the centre and then use the repeat marks to work outwards. Every stencil has a guide to help you reposition your stencil. We are also more than happy to make you a custom size for your project, just get in touch before you place your order.


The number one mistake most people make when stenciling for the first time is using way too much paint, this leads to bleeding under the stencil, and no one wants fuzzy lines! It’s surprising how little paint you actually need. Apply a small amount of paint to your roller, and then roll off any excess paint on a scrap bit of paper/card. Your sponge needs to be touch dry, so paint only comes through when you apply pressure. The same applies when using a stencil brush.


Roller: Your roller should be touch dry before you begin. Start to roll over your stencil with a light pressure. The aim is to build the paint in layers, so start with a light pressure and go from there, you can always press on harder when you’re sure the paint won’t seep and bleed under your stencil. This way you are in total control, and can achieve the finish you like. For a textured effect just apply less layers, if you want a block colour just keep building it up.

Brush: You may prefer to use a brush when stenciling. Make sure your brush is touch dry before you begin. There are two stenciling techniques when using a brush: stabbing or rubbing. Stabbing is where you stipple the paint gradually by lightly stabbing over the stencil. Rubbing is where your brush doesn’t leave the surface and you lightly rub in circular motions over the stencil. Jasmin’s a stabber and Marie’s a rubber, give both techniques a try to find your favourite!


You may need to cut your stencil if you have any irregular shapes to stencil. If you know this is the case before you start your project, it might be better for you to buy 2 stencils. There are often multi-buy discount offers on our website. If you only have 1 stencil and need to cut it, save this section to the very end, and then use scissors to cut your stencil to size.


There are so many different sealant options out there, gloss and matt, varnish or wax. We would say if your surface gets a lot of use, use a varnish over wax and this is more durable. However, many people prefer the finish that wax gives; it’s all down to personal preference.


Clean your stencil by soaking in warm soapy water. If you have used chalk paint or water based emulsion this should easily rub off. You shouldn’t need to scrub your stencil clean. However, if you have used oil based paint, the appropriate method to remove this paint could potentially cause damage to your stencil. Try to avoid scrubbing any delicate areas as the stencil may break.