Well, I didn’t get my music room walls finished as I had hoped, and that’s mainly because I spent a good deal of time this weekend just standing around staring at my walls wondering what the heck I had gotten myself into and how I was going to pull this one off.
By now you know that the stenciled trellis design won out over the zebra design (which may make an appearance in my studio in two very subtle shades of lavender). It wasn’t even a close contest. Out of the 700-ish votes, I’d guess that trellis got at least 80% of those votes. It really didn’t even matter to me. I liked both designs equally, and would have been satisfied with either one, but I was a bit shocked to see that it wasn’t closer than it was.
Anyway, I used this large 16″ x 17″ stencil that I got here (but it’s discontinued)…
…and started on the large open area on the kitchen side of the dining room. It went really well, and was much easier than I had anticipated. I started at the kitchen doorway and worked my way towards the entryway.
This was actually my first time to use anything larger than a small craft stencil, and I’ve never stenciled a wall before, so this was all new to me. I just taped the stencil to the wall with painters tape and used a 6-inch “smooth surface” roller to roll on the paint color. My walls were painted Behr Polar Bear and then I did the stencil in Benjamin Moore Classic Gray. After rolling the paint on, I’d remove the stencil, use my hair dryer to dry the paint along the edges (where the stencil would overlay the design I just painted), and then repeat the process.
After completing each row, I put the stencil in my kitchen sink and washed it off with the scrubby side of a sponge to remove the paint buildup.
Then I dried it off and started on the next row.
So doing those big open areas is quite easy, and it goes pretty quickly.
But then I got stuck. I’m really conflicted on how to proceed from here. Somehow I need to get all of these areas around the edges, over the doorway, and then that little sliver of wall between the door trim and the bookcase…
And then going the other direction, there’s a whole lot of little tiny slivers of wall around doorways and such before I get to another large open space on the opposite wall.
I’ve watched videos on how to stencil corners, and they basically say just press the stencil into the corner as much as you can. Well, my stencil is very thick, so that method hasn’t been working well. I’m afraid if I press it too hard into the corner or around the edges up against the trim, I’ll end up crimping the plastic and then it’ll be worthless to me by the time I get around to the large open space on the opposite wall.
So my only other option is to start the opposite wall at the bookcase and work my way towards the entryway so that I can get all of the big open wall space finished, leaving only the edges and areas above and around door trim and bookcases. At that point, since the big stuff will be done, I can actually cut the stencil to fit into different areas as needed, then tape it back together and recut for the next area.
I have no problem cutting the stencil, as there’s zero chance I’ll use this again now that I’ve used this pattern on my music room walls. But my one issue with that method is that I’ll end up with a corner where the patterns meet but don’t match up.
I hate that, but I don’t know that there’s any other option. I’m trying to convince myself that probably no one else would even notice the mismatched pattern in such a small area (about 3.5 inches of height) so high on the wall, but I would notice it.
But like I said, I don’t know that there’s any other option. There’s no way that thick plastic stencil is going to bend enough for me to actually get it into that tiny space above the doorways without crimping and ruining the stencil.
So that’s my progress and my dilemma.
But overall, I’m really pleased with the design and the colors. I know many people said it would be too busy, but the colors are so subtle that from the front door, the pattern is barely noticeable.
And I really like the way it looks with the grasscloth in the entryway…
Of course, that credenza that’s sitting there didn’t make the cut. Neither did the console table sitting on the other side of the front door. I ordered a new piece from Pier 1 to sit in front of the grasscloth, so it should be here soon.
So I need to make peace with the mismatched design in the top left corner so that I can get these walls finished. Unless, of course, any of you have a brilliant solution for me to eliminate the need for a mismatched pattern.