I’ve seen wall stencils on the market for years. I’ve even picked up one or two at local stores, but I just couldn’t make myself pay to take one home and try it. I was worried it’d look like a sticker on the wall – not really classy. I tossed aside the thought of a stencil until I started looking for something to decorate our dinning room seating alcove. It seats two people and most sit with their back against the wall, so having traditional art there wasn’t going to work. The stencils came to mind again so I started researching them.
At that same time, The Simple Stencil was offering a free trial for bloggers so I jumped at the chance to try it out. My thought was that if I hated it, at least I didn’t have to pay for it. Selfish on my part, I know, but I just couldn’t believe these would have the elegant look I was hoping to achieve.
SimpleStencils™ – Decorative wall lettering and graphical transfers to create a customized expression for your home or office walls, windows or other smooth surfaces that give the “painted” look at a fraction of the price.
I was given $30 to spend at The Simple Stencil’s online store and believe me, it was tough deciding. There are so many fabulous designs, phrases, and more to choose from. In addition, most can be customized with the color and/or font and size of your choice. This was enticing to me. Instead of being stuck with the few phrases and sizes my local store had, that would most likely be in other people’s homes in our area, I got one that was made just for me.
Shopping the site is easy as is customizing your stencil. One of the best features is that you can choose a color close to your wall color so you can see exactly what your stencil will look like. The preview also allows you to change colors and change the size. This preview made it easy for me to pick the look I wanted. I wanted something subtle, so black was the perfect color for my project. When you change the size it shows you the amount the stencil will cost. I found the ordering super easy.
SimpleStencils™ – Vinyl Wall Transfers and Lettering for use in home or office. Easy to apply, looks painted on and removable. Online custom designer allows you to design your own lettering or choose from ready made designs in our large catalog. Site also has a baby, wedding and monogram center.
It generally takes five business days to receive your order – I think that’s a great turnaround time for a custom order. Shipping is reasonable and sent via USPS Priority mail. I received my stencils in good condition, with instructions, and a simple tool for applying it. I was able to purchase two different stencils – one for the dinning room and the other for the hallway. We’re still repainting the hallway, so I’ll show you that one later next week.
Installation was easy, but I would recommend having an assistant and using a level. I couldn’t find our level, so I used a t-square. It worked fine, but a level would obviously work better. I was sent a practice stencil, one is included in all orders, but I wasn’t sure where to put it so I just went for it. Now I realize I could have put up the test sample and removed it. I’d recommend that for your first time.
Dinning Room Stencil Application
I didn’t follow the instructions sent with my stencil, mostly because I was installing it alone. Please read the instructions sent with your stencil and use mine as a reference. I have textured walls. They’re lightly textured (usually called “orange peel”) so these directions should work well for anyone with similar walls.
First, make sure the wall is dust-free. Assemble your tools: level (I used a t-square), painters tape (or pencil to mark the wall), ruler or measuring stick (if you’re going to center), and the application tool provided. Next measure the stencil, find the center, and mark it.
Next, find the center of your wall, mark it. Once the center is established, use the level to mark the location of the bottom of the stencil on the wall. I’m sure most people can “eye ball it”, but not me. I wanted it centered and level, and left to my own devices it wouldn’t have been close. Use your hand to press flat the stencil. This will help the stencil adhere to the sticky side of the stencil application paper. Gently pull off the grid side of the stencil, starting on one side and making sure the letters stay stuck to the sticky paper. If a letter starts to pull up, place the grid paper back down, rub the grid paper where the letter is, and then try again. Once the grid paper is removed, you’ll have just the stencil adhered to the sticky paper (center photo). Press the sticky paper to the wall using the tape (or pencil marks) you placed there earlier. Smooth into place with your hands.
You’re almost done! Use the nifty tool sent with your stencil to gently, but firmly, rub the back of the stencil. Start from one end and gently pull back the paper. Like before, if the letters start to pull up, place the paper back down, rub it again, and then pull back the paper.
I’m sure I’m making it sound much more difficult than it was, because believe me, I did it by myself in less than 10 minutes and it looks great. I was so wrong about the look. It truly looks like someone painted it on my wall. I love it!
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