Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Stenciled Furniture with Rachel at Shades of Blue Interiors

Hey everyone! I'm Rachel from Shades of Blue Interiors! 

I'm a furniture refinisher and home decor fanatic in the St Louis area, and share my experiences and projects over at Shades of Blue Interiors Blog. I'm a stay-at-home mama to 3 young children, so making furniture beautiful for the past couple years has been a much needed creative outlet for me. I also sell some of my furniture at Wood Icing in the Chesterfield Mall, as well as my Etsy store. Anyhow, I was SO excited when Mary Beth contacted me a couple months ago to try out a stencil of my choice from the amazing selection here at StencilGirl Products, then create a tutorial! So here I am :)

I was immediately drawn to a stencil created by artist, Maria McGuire, called "Stitch A Greek Border" and decided to create Greek Inlay End Tables:

Painting with stencils is definitely a learning process. I thought it would be super simple, but it turns out it takes a bit of practice to prevent bleed-through under the stencil. Once you get the hang of it though, there are endless possibilities to create one-of-a-kind pieces with designs created by talented artists.

Ok, on to the tutorial!

 You will notice I cut my stencil into strips. It comes in a 9 x 12 sheet, but because of the way I was using this, it was easier to work with to have it in separated strips. I only used 4 of the 6 designs it came with. The two I didn't use are at the bottom of the above picture.

While these tables were cute beforehand, one of them had water damaged wood on the top. Even when I sanded it smooth and flat, it was still visible, so paint came to the rescue! :) I love Aubusson because of it's deep, rich, versatile shade, but still gives a nod to the classic Greek colors of blue and white.

I chose Chalk Paint because it is always my first choice for painting furniture, but it also has a great thicker consistency that is perfect for stenciling. The acrylic craft paint that I had was too thin and kept bleeding under the stencil. The only downside is it dries quickly, so you will need to wash your hands, brush and stencil a few times during this project to prevent dried build-up of paint.

Here is a tip that I learned through the process, and p.s. "pouncing" is what it is called when you hold the brush perpendicular to your surface and tap or push the brush onto the surface repeatedly, instead of back and forth brush strokes which would cause paint to go under the stencil edges.

Step 8 and 9 are pretty basic, although I wanted to show you how I did it. What I didn't show is STEP 9 1/2 where I went and did touch-ups. You can see where some white paint got in places they aren't supposed to, so go back with a small brush and clean up any areas that need it.  The reason why I used such a fine grit sandpaper for step 10, is because I wanted to remove any small bumps without removing enough paint to expose the wood. After you sand, get a damp paper towel and wipe off the white dust.

While I normally use Annie Sloan Soft Waxes to seal my furniture, I chose a polyacrylic top coat because I feel it is a little more durable for an undistressed piece of furniture. A water-based top coat is usually best because it doesn't yellow. I applied 3 thin coats, which took very little time, since this product dries very quickly. That being said, be careful to watch for drips!

And here is the finished product!

LOVE the way they turned out, don't you? Totally different than most things I do, which is why this was so much fun! This challenge paid off!

I will definitely be using StencilGirl Product Stencils again. In fact, I ordered 2 more and will be revealing a knee-hole desk featuring the Herringbone Stencil next week on my blog!

Before you go.....
Maria here...
The WINNER of the StencilGirl Products
GIVEAWAY from the Blog Hop 
featuring Mary C. Nasser
TheaM chosen from Creative Team Member Janet Joehlin's blog!


  1. I won! this is so exciting! looking forward to using the map stencils on my old maps and Gelli plate!....

    ...and - I LOVE that table!

  2. Wow This is stinkin fantastic!!!!! I wonder if I have a table that needs painting!!! way cool. Congrats TheaM!!! These stencils rock!!

  3. Great tutorial, Rachel. So many helpful tips on stenciling furniture.

  4. How a lovely project and congratulation winner!

  5. Congratulations Thea!! Love this demo...a great result.

  6. Outstanding, Rachel!
    So beautifully done!

  7. Amazing job done... 'pouncing' a tip to remember!


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