Thomas J. Story
Add a little excitement to your shades by stenciling designs on them. It’s easy and inexpensive—and your shades will be total originals
(Not including the fabric roller shades)
- Printed image to copy (optional)
- Stencil board or heavy card stock
- Screen printing ink or fabric paint suitable for shade material
- Glue stick
- Cutting board, at least half the size of your image
- Craft knife with extra blades
- Drop cloth
- Tape measure
- Masking tape, any width, or repositionable spray adhesive
- Stencil brush
- Prep the image. Select an image from a clip-art book or website, or draw one yourself. With a photocopier, enlarge the image to the desired size, if necessary. For a larger image than your photocopier can handle, enlarge each half separately.
- Create your stencil. With the glue stick, coat the back of the photocopy. Make sure to spread the glue onto all areas. Flip the image and adhere it to the stencil board or card stock. (If you enlarged halves of the image separately, glue each half to the board.) Let the glue dry. Then lay the stencil board on the cutting board. With the craft knife, carefully cut out the image. You may need to go over your cuts more than once to be able to lift out the image. Be sure to use sharp blades to avoid ragged edges; replace the blades as needed.
- Position the stencil. Position one roller shade flat on the drop cloth with the room side facing up. Place the stencil on the shade. Use the tape measure to make sure the stencil is centered. Adhere the stencil (or multiple stencil sections) to the shade with masking tape or by spraying the back of the stencil with repositionable spray adhesive.
- Paint. With the stencil brush, dab the printing ink or fabric paint through the stencil cutouts onto the shade. To keep the stencil tight against the shade (to prevent the ink or paint from seeping), press your fingers down on the stencil near the section you’re painting. Let dry.
- Set and hang. Remove the stencil and follow any paint label instructions for setting the color. Repeat on any additional shades. Hang as you would any roller shades.