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  • Katie Scott

Putting a textured stencil on furniture.

I’ve been waiting for a chance to try my hand at raised stencilling on furniture for a few months now. There is so much stencil-spiration out there right now from artists like Natalie at A Ray of Sunlight Designs and Jami at Jami Ray Vintage.


This buffet turned out to be the perfect candidate for some experimenting! One side of the piece has some pretty significant veneer damage. It was bubbled up but was likely already fixed at some point because it wasn't peeling up or pliable like damaged veneer usually is. (If the wood had been peeling or was coming loose, I would have absolutely removed this section and repaired it but since it was still in tact and firmly attached, I decided to camouflage instead) Here's the BEFORE & AFTER of this side panel!

To create my 3D, or raised stencilled effect I used a product called EXTRA FAT. It's an all natural, paint additive that comes in a powdered form. It's designed to be mixed with your chalk paint of choice to thicken it. EXTRA FAT can be used with any colour without distorting the original hue.

I mixed the powder with my FAT Paint in the colour Snow and created a spackle-like consistency. I wanted it to be thick enough to create a raised appearance but not so heavy that it would fall or droop off the vertical surface of the buffet before it could dry.

Once my mix was ready, I taped my stencil (in this case a Martha Stewart Crafts aviary design that I purchased from Michael's) to my piece and used a small metal trowel to smear my mix over the stencil. I peeled my stencil up as soon as I had filled in all of the areas and got a surprising clear image. The nice thing about this technique is that even if your stencil isn't perfect, any imperfections get lost in the overall pattern. Don't be too hard on yourself if you get a few smudges. It's ART, not a factory finish!

I waited a few minutes before moving my stencil to the next spot in order to give the EXTRA FAT mixture a moment to set up. This seemed to help me not destroy the already completed areas. I'd say that the EXTRA FAT mixture dried to the touch in the same time frame as regular paint but I'd give it at least overnight to cure before trying to brush any additional paint over top.

Once I had completed my stencilling, I used my pneumatic paint gun to apply two thin layers of FAT Paint in Snow and then a layer of Top Coat for maximum protection on my new design.

What do you think? Is this something you might try to save a piece of furniture with a damaged surface?