I could spend a fortune on pretty stencils! I enjoy stenciling furniture, signs, suitcases, and pillows. I tried to stencil years ago and I really didn't have much success with it back then. That was before I knew the correct way to stencil and I must say there is an art to it. After taking several classes from excellent teachers and watching tutorials I feel comfortable now.
Here are my tips for stenciling:
1. Tape your stencil with Frog tape or Blue painters tape. This is to prevent your pattern from slipping.
2. Use a stencil brush which you can buy at Hobby Lobby. They usually come in a set.
3. Pour a small amount of paint on a paper plate.
4. Take the stencil brush and dip it into the paint.
5. This is very IMPORTANT - take your brush and tap it on the paper plate to remove most of the paint that you loaded onto the brush. This prevents bleed through which is one of the common problems with stenciling.
6. Take the brush and start stippling the paint onto the surface. Use a up and down motion as you stipple the paint.
7. When you reload your brush you will need to tap the brush again to remove the paint. Too much paint will cause your pattern to bleed.
8. After you have the stencil painted then remove the pattern carefully.
Where can you purchase stencils? There are several good places online to buy them, Hobby Lobby, Home Depot, and JoAnn's.
Here is a suitcase that I stenciled a few weeks ago. This suitcase was painted with CeCe Caldwell's Seattle Mist. For the stencil I used Pittsburgh Gray by CeCe. Suitcases are usually easily found for a reasonable price at Thrift Stores. Sometimes they are not in good shape on the outside so it's a great project to paint and transform.