Since we moved into our house last April (2012), I have had so many ideas on what to do with each room. First I tackled our living room, because I figured it would be the most frequented area of the house. While it’s still not done, I am happy about the projects I’ve done, and the progress we have made on it. Next, I did some work on the kitchen, and finally it was time to tackle the dining room. Here it is when we moved in (back left)…..
We found the perfect table, and up next was decorating. I had a couple different ideas about hanging things, making shelves, or doing a gallery wall, but all of those ideas were put out of my mind when I started seeing wall stencils popping up everywhere.
Pre-anything….and yes I know this picture is incredibly crooked. Oops…
I started talking with Royal Design Studio, and they were kind enough to send me a stencil of my choice along with some of their awesome crème paint, and a stencil brush. Now, the hardest part was picking a stencil. They have so many different designs that it made it nearly impossible to select the perfect one. Originally I wanted a Moroccan Trellis, but then I thought maybe going bolder would be better?! I am too indecisive when it comes to things like this. So, I enlisted the opinions of my 250 closest friends, and went from there. It definitely wasn’t unanimous, as there are so many awesome patterns, but I felt really good about the Grand Damask pattern I chose.
Now, I had to decide on the colors for the dining room. I absolutely love super dark paint in dining rooms, but I was worried maybe my smallish dining room couldn’t pull it off. So I debated doing just an accent wall with dark paint, and keeping the other walls light…but then I thought that might look weird….so then I thought maybe leave all the walls light and just do the stencil, but that didn’t seem to have a big enough impact in my mind…..so then I thought maybe paint a darker color, but not too dark…maybe light grey? Are you following this? This is seriously the way I try to decide on these types of things….too indecisive. Well, I narrowed it down and decided to go with some shade of grey. But how to find the perfect grey? Through multiple searches I found this great site that had The Best Shades of Grey listed! Total. Score. If you want to paint something grey, this is your go-to list. I ordered 2 samples from Benjamin Moore: Kendall Charcoal and Chelsea Grey.
So yeah, I know it’s kind of hard to see them accurately, and I am apologizing in advance because in all my ‘before’ pictures I used my phone camera because I was in such a rush to just do it. Sorry, but hopefully you will get the idea (who cares about the before pictures anyway!?).
I still wasn’t sure which color; I liked them both in theory. So, I took out the silver crème paint that Royal Design Studios sent me, and I decided to try it on top of each color and see how I liked it. I used the little sample stencil they sent with the order, and it gave me a good idea what it would look like.
I know, it’s still hard to tell from these pictures, but I was totally set on the darker color once I did this. So I took out my handy HomeRight EZ Twist Paint Stick and got to work. Before I go on, have you heard of this EZ Twist Paint Stick? I hadn’t either until I heard all these DIY bloggers raving about it. I had to have it! Let me tell you, it’s amazing! You don’t need any trays or anything really. The paint gets sucked up into a tube that is attached to the roller, and you just push the paint out as needed. It also is super easy to load up…no pouring or spilling, it has an easy attachment that attaches to the paint can lid and then to the EZ Stick, and it pulls the paint in it with NO mess. Like I said, it’s amazing. I highly recommend getting one if you are going to be painting a large area. It saves sooo much time, and you don’t waste any paint. I used just the paint sample and had nearly one big wall covered.
(again terrible picture, and no, I do not buy Pop-Tarts in bulk, this was a box from Costco!) Can you believe that wall coverage is JUST from the paint sample? Crazy!
Anyway, I finished painting the next day because I had to go out and buy the actual gallon of paint. The color I selected was my Benjamin Moore- Kendall Charcoal- 166. I finished painting it the following evening, and then let it dry 0vernight.
Someone wanted to test out the ladder….
You can kind of see the paint color better here in natural light (Excuse the mess and the weird panoramic iPhone shot):
I was anxious to start the stencil and I began first thing the next morning….I was a little confused where to start, but from everything I researched, starting in the middle at the top was the best idea for this pattern. So I put all fear aside, and just went for it!
I think I was literally holding my breath throughout the entire first stencil. I breathed a huge sigh of relief when I took it off and saw the result!
So I kept stenciling…
Now, for some reason I felt all this anxiety about doing the actual stencil. I thought for sure I would mess it up, or it would come out terrible, or something alike. I wish I hadn’t felt this way because it really came out great, and was super simple. It was time consuming, but even still I did the entire wall in about 4 hours, with a couple breaks.
The main tip to remember while stenciling is to brush off almost all of the paint on your brush before putting it to the wall. Really, you want barely any paint. I dipped my brush just a little into the paint, and then wiped it off on a paper towel. Then, I used the brush and made a circular motion while painting onto the stencil. By following those simple directions I was able to get super crisp lines, and I was actually shocked at how clean the lines were.
I also love the look of this Silver Stencil Crème. The color doesn’t come out even, which I love, and it really picks up the light. I love it.
Definitely the trickiest part of stenciling was painting where it didn’t line up exactly: the ceiling line, the molding line, and then also where the wall stopped on the right and left sides (see picture below for example). However, it wasn’t hard…just a bit tricky. You really can’t tape it down, you just have to press the stencil into the corners where you want it.
I pressed and kept my fingers crossed. It wasn’t bad, and it came out pretty good. Be sure to tape off your edges! I like Frog Tape because it doesn’t bleed or pull up the paint when it’s dried.
Are you ready to see the final result?! I hope so because I am going to bombard you with photos….
What do you think? It was really hard to get a full dining room shot, so I did try it with my panoramic feature on my phone so y’all could see the whole room, but it looks a bit distorted…
Now for the Before and after!
I really dislike our lighting fixture in the dining room, and want to make or get a pretty new one….any ideas? Have you tried out any wall stencils? I really highly recommend them and my bathroom is next up on my to-stencil list!
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Disclosure: All opinions in this post are honest and my own. I was not compensated for this post, however I was sent complimentary products to aid in this post.