Crafts, Decorated

Customising your cushions: Stencilling throw pillows and cushions

I recently bought new cushions for the dining room chairs. They were nice and green. Just solid green, nothing special cushions. In reading the package I found they were made of canvas fabric. If this isn’t an invitation for embellishment, I don’t know what is.

We recently created our own stencils.

Stencilling seat cushions or throw pillows is a small job with a big pay off.

Materials needed:

  • Stencil
  • acrylic paint (oil based paint if for the bathroom or outdoors)
  • stencil brush or sponge
  • tape or pins

Tape or pin your stencil in place. Pinning is more secure but may buckle. Tape will not buckle but you need to use strong tape. If you use tape that is too strong it could leave yuck(tape residue) on the cushion.

Before you decide on colour think about how bold or subdued you want the stencil to be. For example on a light sage green seat cushions:

for a subtle accent use one or two shades darker sage than the cushion or go lighter such as ivory or very light sage.

for a medium intensity accent, use a colour in the same tone such as dusty blue depending on the other colours in the room or a dark version of the sage.

For a bold accent, use a contrasting colour or a very dark colour, such as orange/red or dark hunter green.

Stencilling is tricky because you don’t want any paint to get underneath the stencil edges. When stencilling something soft, it is a good idea to hold the edges down as you work.

Whatever brushes or sponges you use, do not brush the paint on. Daub it on. If you brush, you will not get the same effect and risk moving the stencil or getting paint under the edges.

You can use more than one colour. Try blending one colour edge into another by putting colour on your sponge or brush sparingly. You want so little you should even brush it onto a scrap paper first to get even more paint off. Then daub the area. Now repeat with the second colour. Now go back to the first colour and continue to repeat until it is the desired coverage. This take patience but is worth it in the end.

Once you have completed the pillows or cushions allow them to dry completely. There are fabric sealers you can spray on or just use it as is.

You can also use layers of stencils. To get a more intricate design create a different stencil for the background, distance, midrange, foreground and main object. Then starting from the back, stencil one on top of the other. Allow drying time in between.

Now comes the really fun part. Look around and see what else you can tie into this design. You can stencil the floor to look like a rug. It also will make the chair cushions look like they were purchase in an exclusive line to match the rug.

Keep in mind that you can make these for gifts and personalise them to the recipient.

You can stencil the wall, the door, the table, or the drapes. The list goes on and on. Enjoy and email me what you did. I love to hear from you.

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