Stencilled tray

Posted: 20th Feb 2017

Stencils are perfect for upcycling items like this plain little tray in need of some TLC!

You will need
Doris flower border stencil mini
Chalk paints
Stencil brushes
Low-tack masking tape
Painted tray


1. Start by adding some small blobs of paint to a paper plate, we used tester pots of chalk paint. Plan how the stencil will work, you may need to measure it out and mark central points to work out from. When you're aiming for a symmetrical pattern start in the middle and work outwards. Once the stencil is in the correct place secure it with masking tape. Remember that stencils can be turned over to invert the design too.

2. Take a little grey paint onto the end of a dry stencil brush, give it a few taps on the paper plate to distribute the paint and then tap the brush onto a paper towel or some scrap paper to remove excess paint. This is a really important part of stencilling. You're basically aiming for as little paint on the brush as possible. Then start stencilling.

3. Hold the stencil brush at 90 degrees to the stencil. Keeping the stencil brush at this angle at all times, stipple the brush in an up and down motion onto the tray through the cut parts of the stencil. Keep tapping harder and harder until no more paint comes away. Reload the brush and keep tapping. You can also use your free hand to hold the stencil in place, any movement at this stage will cause blurred edges.

4. Chalk paint dries pretty quick but at this stage it's still removable with a damp cloth so don't worry if you make a mistake. Once the grey is done, change brush and colour. Using a pink paint and smaller brush, stipple as before. If you would rather not have any overlapping colour you could mask off the areas you don't want to paint.

5. To complete, add a lemon colour with another small brush. You can also go back and touch up any grey if necessary. Repeat, covering all sides of the tray if desired.

Tutorial and images courtesy of The Stencil Studio.