A How to Stencil Guide for Stenciling – Oak Lane Studio

A How to Stencil Guide for Stenciling

1. Lightly mark the area to be stenciled to coincide with guidelines (registration marks) on the stencil.

2. Blot off excess paint onto paper towel until brush is "dry" and seems almost out of paint.

3. Place overlay #1 of your stencil in correct position and adhere to surface using repositionable adhesive spray.

4. Hold brush as a pencil with bristles flat on surface and handle straight. (Notice bristles of a stencil brush are specially cut for this action.) Start at outside edges of cutouts and paint in a circular, clockwise motion toward the center. Hold your stencil with the other hand. Begin with a light touch.(B)

5. Now reverse direction to a counter-clockwise motion, building up color. You control the color in 2 ways - amount of pressure applied on brush and number of
times you go over an area of the design. Lift stencil corner and check color before removing stencil. (C)

6. If it is a two overlay stencil, then align Print #2, using the register marks as guides for proper placement over previously stenciled area. Change to a clean brush when changing paint colors. When doing a wall border, remember to follow your "center line" guideline on stencil to keep your work level.(C)


1. Surface to be stenciled should be clean and painted with a non-glossy paint. Pre-wash fabrics. (WARNING: Some colors may become deeper when ironed.) Different fabrics absorb paint differently. Practice on a separate piece of your fabric.

2. Practice stenciling on paper. These prints can then be taped in place to check design placement and color. 

Clean stencil with paper towel which has been dampened with turpentine or mineralspirits if using oil-based paint or water for water-based paint.

Follow curing and heat setting guidelines per paint manufacturers recommendations.