Sunday 3 April 2022

2020 Topic 06: Stencils - Topic introduction {with Keren Baker}

Hi everyone, Keren here with you today to talk about what could be described as one of the unsung heroes of the crafting stash. We all have them, they're often made from Mylar and they don't look particularly exciting. We won't get the same reaction just by looking at it in comparison to viewing a beautiful stamp BUT ohhhh the possibilities.

Our new topic will look at different techniques using the wonderful stencil- but are there other things you can make stencils from other than plastic? How can you layer, rotate even cut up stencils to get more options. Are there favoured mediums to use on them? There are so many ideas that we just can't cover them all here but I know that our talented bloggers will come up with inspiring ideas and even surprising uses for the humble stencil.

It's easy to assume that everyone knows (or remembers the basics) how to stencil. So I thought I'd begin with some easy ideas. Even if you've done it for ages and love doing complicated techniques, a refresher on the basics is always welcome.

Here's a PaperArtsy video from a few years ago that should give you a good start.

Don't forget how stunning using a stencil simply can be. Kay Carley has used a number of stencils in the background in different colours that gives depth and richness.

Stencil resist is a super technique that you can use so many products for...gesso, paint, embossing powder, PaperArtsy glazes, masking fluid, rubber cement, Vaseline, embossing pastes, inks, salt, wax crayons, wax and more. There's something wonderful about seeing pools of paint creep up to an area and contrast beautifully with a stencilled design. How many of these have you tried?

Here's an example using Vaseline as a resist. Follow the link for a video plus some other inspiring links.

How about alcohol inks, watercolours and stencils? Amber Rain Davis shows 3 techniques using the trio in the following video.

Here's an example of just using alcohol ink with your stencils. You'll need an alcohol ink friendly surface like Yupo but it gives a fabulously fluid result. There's a tutorial in the link.

Have you tried foiling through your stencils? This beautiful example (follow the link for a bonus video) uses a hot foil gel medium and a 'tacky when dry' medium. 

Lots of us own a die cutting machine- have you tried dry embossing using stencils? The sample below was using a JOFY stencil and stamp set. How about dry embossing with stencils on metal?

Art isn't just for inside the home. If your garden needs pepping up, try taking your stencils outside and paint your boring paving slabs using an outdoor suitable paint!

Staying with art outside, one of the most infamous artists using stencils is Banksy. Using multi-layered stencils gives bold but detailed images that often have a specific message.

Speaking of a cool way to use stencils, I remember seeing Leandra doing this 'Stencil Bumping' technique that she'd learned from Lynne Perrella. She demonstrates it in the following video.

Gel printing with stencils is a quick and easy way to build up layers, but Carolyn Dube shows a clever technique to get reverse printing, which is particularly useful for lettering when using gel plates.

PaperArtsy has an awesome range of stencils, but sometimes you might try to make your own. Do you cut them out with a craft knife from mylar, cardstock, acetate or recycled plastic? You could create them from vinyl cut out using a electronic cutting system like Silhouette Cameo or Cricut and more. There are lots of free downloadable stencil images available, so well worth hunting out. You could also grab your dies and die cut those shapes from plastic or similar to start getting creative.

This blogger cut her own based on a Photoshop design, and gives a great tutorial on how to do it if you're up for making a unique stencil.

Why use one stencil when you can layer many? This colourful collection features many different layers and stencils but by using a limited palette and knocking back some of the colour using white, you end up with an intriguing and harmonious design.

If you love textiles, you might enjoy stencilling onto fabric. This next tutorial shows exactly how to do it. Depending on whether you want to wash your final result you can use paints or add a product like a clear fabric medium to allow for washing.

Using Grunge Paste with stencils creates dimension and it also can be textured before it dries. Anneke De Clerck created this stunning canvas.

We all love Infusions. How do you make them work with stencils? This stunning project by Brenda Brown has step-by-step photos to show the process.

Stencils can give us something to add embellishments onto. If you like fibre art, mesh stencils might be good to research. Or simply use more bold solid stencil images with paint and sew onto them. On fabric, you might find using a repositionable adhesive on the reverse of your stencil will make life a whole lot easier.

All of our PaperArtsy designers use stencils so cleverly. If you search 'stencils' over on the PaperArtsy blog, so many examples to inspire will be listed. This piece of art shows gorgeous Fresco Finish Chalk Acrylics layered to perfection.

Does this topic push your creative buttons? We would LOVE you to share what you get up to with us! A great place is tagging us on Instagram @paperartsy or why not join us and post in the PaperArtsy People Group on Facebook. We love to see what you make! 


Helen said...

great topic, got to love stencils!

Ellie Knol said...

Lovely inspirational post.. the infusions one is my favorite!

Victoria Wilding said...

Such a fab introduction with so many ideas. Tempted to go back and do my blog post again 😆

Stef said...

This is such a great topic and a reminder of why we all love stencils so much. Thanks for a great post. It is certainly one that I shall refer back to time and time again for all the brilliant tips and videos included in it! I definitely need to try the alcohol inked rose, just fab! ~ Stef