Stencil Instructions

What do you need to stencil?

A few simple supplies is all you'll need to begin your stenciling project. We've listed the necessary supplies below, along with a few tips on what to look for and how to use them. You'll find all the supplies you need in our On-Line Catalog.

1. A Stencil - Our stencils are laser cut from heavy, resilient plastic.

2. Stencil Adhesive - repositionable Stencil Adhesive makes stenciling walls or fabric much, much easier. This revolutionary product creates a temporary bond on the back of the entire stencil. Reposition it again and again without recoating or leaving a residue. Also helps eliminate paint seeping under the stencil plate by holding down the bridges. In an average room you will only need to recoat your stencil a few times or whenever it starts to loose tack, so one can is more than enough.

3. Paint - Exceptional blending & shading qualities of Paintstiks® and their ease in use, make them a superior paint medium to stencil with, beginners and pros alike. Skip the acrylics unless you have to use them, and definitely if you have never stenciled before. Simply scribble the Paintstik® onto a smooth nonporous palette and transfer the paint with a stencil brush to the stencil openings. About the consistency of lipstick, this paint is very clean and easy to use. When heat set, it is washable and works wonderfully on fabrics as well as walls. Lower latex paint sheens, like Flat & Eggshell, will provide the best surfaces for these paints to adhere to providing faster drying times and more intense colors as well. Since you use a dry brush technique with these paints, you can readily move the stencil plate as soon as you have finished painting it. Complete drying time takes about 24 hours. We sell the sticks individually or in four color combinations. One stick per color is usually more than enough.

4. Brushes - Using good quality, soft China bristle brushes will allow for great shading & blending and also make the job easier. You'll need one brush for each color used. While one person may like a larger brush because it will be faster, another may prefer a smaller brush that allows more control. For this reason we recommend a variety of sizes to start with allowing you to see what you like best. We carry four sizes - 3/8”, 1/2”, 3/4” & 1”. All four are included in the Starter Kit or if you prefer, order them individually. For brush size suggestions for each design, see the catalog insert or refer to the individual designs our website. (TIP OF THE TRADE... wrap the bristles with masking tape, leaving about 1/4" of the end bristles showing - this will firm up your brush and give you more control).

5. Brush Cleaner - "The Master's®" Brush Cleaner & Preserver makes the oil based Paintstiks® water clean up. Use our nontoxic all purpose brush cleaner with our handy scrubber and for a super fast cleanup of your brushes!

Stenciling Fabrics

1. Choose a material with a fairly tight weave and without a nubby or heavy texture for best results ~ linen works well!

2. Use Shiva Paintstiks® for stenciling fabrics. They dry to a flexible permanent finish and are washable when heat set which is a simple technique you do with an iron. To heat set: Let your paint cure at least 4 or 5 days, the longer you wait the more permanent it will be. Set your iron to the temperature recommended for the fabric you used. Place waxed paper over the design and iron for about 10 seconds, on both sides to set the pain. Launder in cold water, using a mild soap and a low dryer setting. Dry cleaning is not recommended as the solvents used in the process can dissolve the paint.

3. After becoming familiar with your stencil on paper, practice on a scrap of the same fabric to become familiar with the paints and application process before heading off to the final project. If you have purchased pre-made curtains or runners, take a sample to your local fabric store and have them give you a 1/4 yard of a similiar fabric to practice on.



(C) Mitchell Andrus Studios at