Thursday, August 11, 2011

Stenciling on textured walls: the Kitchen Pantry

Phase Two of the Pantry Makeover

Prepping the pantry, painting and stenciling

This phase ended up being the most difficult phase of the make over, which I did not initially expect. 
I started by trying out like 5 different paint samples of grey.  Anyone that has picked out grey as a paint knows the challenge of finding the perfect shade.  One that is not too blue, not to taupe... not too dark... it's a very challenging color.  But I've gotten lucky twice and found two of my favorite shades of grey for different rooms in my house.  I took my original formula of Elephant Skin Grey (Sherwin Williams) and brought it to Lowe's to have them color match it and then go one shade later.  They ended up having to go 50% lighter which worried me it would be too light, but the experts knew what they were saying this time around because it ended up being perfect.


{That is the paint chip of the original shade, again they went 50% lighter for my final pantry color}

First step was ripping out the shelves
Next I had a lot of holes to fill, and again nothing was easy in this phase.  Our walls are the textured style what's called knockdown.  It makes for difficult painting, difficult cleaning, and difficult hole repair.  However, here's my little secret to repairing holes with textured walls:

As you can see you don't have to be as neat putting on the compound as you would with flat walls.  Then take use a baggie to dab at the compound and give it texture so once it's painted it'll blend in better.

Once all 100 holes were filled and dried I painted the entire pantry two coats of the personalized primer & paint I picked up from Lowe's.

Next was the stenciling!
My previous experience with stenciling was with fabric, and I had yet to attempt any stenciling on walls.  I figured if just painting one solid color was a challenge with knockdown that stenciling on textured walls would be just about the biggest challenge I could face.

Luckily, Cutting Edge Stencils sent me so many extra accessories to help with the project it made it a tad easier.  I used their border stencil, their stencil level {to ensure your design is always straight} and the 4" dense foam roller which all can be found here.

Attempt #1:

Major seepage due to the textured walls.

So began my frustration.
I then figured I'd start at the bottom using the main stencil to see if using the large piece would be easier...

I saw improvement, but still wasn't perfect... if you follow me on Twitter you would be watching me express my anger and frustration and whining how my beautiful stencil idea was being washed away ever so quickly.

But I regained my composure and decided I'd gather all the stenciling tools, and grab my spray adhesive and give it one last effort.  I had read a lot of tips about using a light spray of Elmer's spray adhesive to help when using a stencil on textured walls.  However, my first attempt made zero progress.  The stencil didn't stick at all, so I laid it back down and went to town with the adhesive.  I then let it sit for about 1 minute and then stuck it on the wall. 

1. Elmer's Spray Adhesive, fairly heavy coverage and let stand for a minute before applying to wall.
2. Level to keep the stencil straight when moving it to the new area.
3. The amount of paint I had on my roller when starting to stencil.  VERY LITTLE AMOUNT.
4. I used the roller and went with the direction of the stencil so I didn't risk lifting certain areas, and allowing the paint to seep underneath the stencil.

TIP: The less paint the better when stenciling on textured walls to prevent it from seeping under the stencil.  Here's an example of how little paint ended up after I stenciled each section:

It's a lot easier to go over it a couple times with less paint, then to re do it when there was too much paint.

After using those techniques I was quite happy with the results!

{Already mapping out where the new shelves will be placed....}

If you plan on stenciling textured walls, even flat walls, just take the extra time to prep and take your time during the stenciling.  There's no hurry!


  1. Hi, Pamela

    Love what you did. How did you get such a big stencil? I see you love this design. Great job!

  2. Oooh such a lovely job and helpful tips - like that pattern so much! Now to fill it up. :)

  3. I was searching for something that described exactly this scenario and found your pantry! Thank you for the info and for the pics of your lovely stenciling!

  4. I am so very impressed! Way to perserve! I hate my textured walls and you have just given me hope for the future.


Love hearing back from my readers, you make my day! Thanks, Pamela of PBJstories

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