I’ve been at it again. Scott says I get “a look.” I’m not exactly sure what the look is but I think it involves standing very still, hands on hips, and staring intently into a room in which nothing is happening. Yep…something’s about to get moved. This time it was on the screened porch, which we’ve been absolutely loving during its first habitable summer.
We’d pulled a couple of freebie-with-our-couch, parson-like side tables out of retirement to use on the porch when we first furnished it a few months ago. They were originally a scuffed dark stain but I painted them soft ivory.
Nothing wrong with them at all, but nothing particularly exciting about them either. When I recently came across a moroccan tile stencil I had stashed away with a set I’d bought when I was finishing my girls’ playroom (post and pictures to come soon!) I thought I’d give stenciling the table a shot. If I hated it, well, I figured I could give it a quick sand and spray paint it back to ivory.
First I gave the whole table a fresh coat of soft grey spray paint (Rustoleum since the table would be semi-exposed to the elements).
I was planning to paint the sides of the top an antique white, so I didn’t worry about the splotchy grey there.
After the spray paint had completely dried overnight, I used a small foam roller to roll the antique white paint along the edges of the top. And then it was time to stencil. I had done a little research on stenciling prior to undertaking this and so knew that spray adhesive was a necessity (I used Elmer’s Multi-Purpose Spray Adhesive). I also knew that the best tool for applying paint to a stencil is a foam brush. Which I swore I had in the basement but when I went to retrieve it, it was nowhere to be found. I had an abundance of bristle brushes though, so even though I knew it wasn’t “right” I decided to give it a go. And it all worked out fine, but next time I stencil I will use a foam brush. The bristles are a little too unwieldy for the control you need stenciling and the finished look is a bit mottled. Which I am okay with, it looks sort of rustic and handmade, but I can imagine that a foam brush application would have a more crisp look.
On to the stenciling. I gave the back of the stencil a light coat of spray adhesive and then positioned it on the table so it lined up straight against the edge. Next I applied a bit of paint to my brush and dabbed it on newspaper to remove excess paint. I dabbed the brush over the stencil until everything was painted, then carefully removed it. I found I could use the same coat of adhesive for 2-3 repositions of the stencil before it needed another spray. I’d periodically check the back to be sure no paint had seeped through that would make splotches on the table. When in doubt, give the back a quick swipe with a dry paper towel. To make the next several rows of the tile pattern I overlapped the last row I had done to be sure everything would line up and repeated the process…
…many, many times…
And now the moving furniture part. Nothing terribly significant here (Scott has come home before to the entire living room having been moved around) but I decided to shift the accent tables around a bit and put the yellow table between the chairs and the newly stenciled moroccan tile table against the wall between the sofa and chair. I liked the idea of having a table lamp on that side of the room and the yellow table fit a bit better between the chairs.
The table has so much more character now and is leaps and bounds more interesting than the plain, square, beige table it was before. For my first venture in stenciling furniture, count me one happy gal.