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DIY Wall Art Botanicals

Today I’m sharing my first art painting project. It’s one that doesn’t require lots of creative painting skill, which I don’t have.

This painting project is a result of my analysis paralysis. I’ve been wanting new art for my room but I can’t make a decision. Does anyone else have this problem?

fern botanical diy

I search and search but nothing is perfect. Art is so hard to choose. So what do I have? A blank wall for years. I finally decided that I would try to make something temporary to fill the space until that perfect thing crosses my path.

I was inspired by this modern botanical piece that I saw on Etsy. I love it, but the colors don’t work for me. It looks easy to make something similar. I decided to try it using stencils (never having used a stencil before in my life).

botanical stencil inspiration

Supplies Needed for DIY Stencil

Supplies for DIY stencil painting

To make a DIY stencil painting you will need these supplies:

  • Canvas – You could use a canvas, a piece of wood or I used some bulletin boards that I have had in my closet for two years. I recommend buying twice what you think you will use so you have extras if you make mistakes. My bulletin boards were about 18×24.
  • Base color – I liked the dark background with a white botanical. You could use any color that provides a lot of contrast. I used Blue Behr paint (in the sample 8 oz size).
  • Stencil paint color – I used white primer that I had leftover.
  • Stencils – I bought my stencils on Etsy. I wanted some large leaves. I bought this Monstera leaf stencil and this fern stencil. Be sure to size up so you get a stencil that’s large enough for your canvas. For the fern I purchased an 18×12 size.
  • Foam roller (2) – You need two rollers, one for the base and one for the stencil.
  • Paper plate – or anything to hold the paint.
  • Adhesive spray
  • Touch up brush

Steps to make stencil painting

Step 1 – Paint Your Base Canvas

It doesn’t matter if you are starting with a piece of wood, cutting board, canvas, bulletin board. The first step is to paint your base color. I used a paint sample from Home Depot so I didn’t have to buy a lot of the color. I recommend choosing a dark or vivid color as your base.

Let this dry thoroughly.

Step 2 – Set Your Stencil

To make the stencil stay in place I used adhesive spray. It comes up easily after you are finished. I also pressed around the edges of the stencil with my fingers to seal it down as much as possible.

Tools for DIY stencil Painting project

Step 3 – Foam Roll Your Stencil

I read quite a bit about how to paint stencils to avoid “bleed” before I tried my first one. I tested two methods. I blotted on with a foam paint brush (method 1) and I rolled on with a foam roller (method 2).

The foam roller was 100% better. I used a tip I found which I think made the difference. Roll the paint on your brush and then roll the excess onto a paper towel. There isn’t as much paint on the roller at this point and then paint over your stencil.

Stencil painting techniques

As soon as you are finished painting your stencil remove it from the canvas and set aside.

Step 4 – Touch Up Any Mistakes

I rolled onto my canvas with the foam roller while I was painting the stencil so I touched up the white spots with a brush. I used a small paint brush to do that.

This is the finished product. I had to scrap the Monstera leaf. It didn’t turn out as I had hoped and I just didn’t like it. I made two ferns, one for each side of the bed.

how to paint stencils DIY
DIY fern painting

Now all you have to do is hang up your new piece of art. I’m not sure this will be permanent, but what is. Maybe I’ll learn to paint something more challenging next. Do you like to paint? I’d love to hear how if you want to answer in the comments.

I’m inspired to learn how to paint with oil paints by my friend Mary. If you want to learn more about painting furniture, check out my beginners guide to painting with chalk paint.

diy stencil painting

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27 Comments

  1. I”m the same way when it comes to artwork in the bedroom, but good for you for taking the plunge (I’m not quite there yet). I think the ferns look great!

    1. It still needs something more but I will have to wait for inspiration. Thanks!

  2. Your botanical stencil art was a success! Love how the white stenciled image of your fern fronds pops against the dark blue. Thanks so much for your organizing efforts with the hop. Happy to be crafting with you today!

    1. It’s been fun to see so many creative ideas. Thanks!

  3. You have a winner here, Andrea! Love your stenciled ferns! And they look perfect on your bedroom wall! Isn’t it fun stepping out of your comfort zone to create something lovely?

    1. Thanks! You are right, not in my comfort zone, but I do love paint.

  4. Andrea I have been wanting to do this in our home. I just wasn’t too sure if it would turn out. You have made it look so easy, thanks for the tutorial! I love the blue and white. My favorite and will be doing the same color. Pinned to come back to when I get my canvas!

    Thanks for hosting the fun crafting hop. It is so much fun working with you!

    1. It’s been fun so much fun. I do love blue and white!

  5. This is so awesome Andrea! I love how it turned out and such a great idea 🙂 Great job friend and so great crafting with you!

  6. I love it! It’s simple, understated but elegant and really underlines the colors of the bedding, the perfect touch! Thanks so much for all your hard work getting the craft hop going Andrea, much appreciated!

  7. What a great post. It’s so fun too hear about your adventure on coming out of your comfort zone. The craft came out beautiful.

  8. Andrea, I am a stencil lover, so I was excited to see how you made your stencil. I really liked the result. I’m sorry you didn’t like it and scraped it. The white fern on blue was really pretty.

  9. Andrea, what a great project, these certainly do not look like DIY projects, they look professional! I have tried a couple of stencil projects and have not had luck with them. Does the adhesive leave stickiness on your surface after you remove the stencil? My problem has been paint slipping under the edges of the stencil. I guess I need to practice more! Thanks so much for taking care of the lion’s share of work for this hop, I am so appreciative!

    1. You’re so welcome. I’m happy to help. My first one did bleed through (there were three). The trick seems to be using a roller and getting the excess paint off.

  10. Hi Andrea, thank you for helping organize the hop!
    I really like the texture of the canvas painted, and your choice of the dark navy with the white is beautiful. You made something that looks difficult a very easy diy 🙂

    Hugs,
    Rachelle

  11. Stencils scare me because of bleeding… yours looks great!

    1. My first one bled also. That’s when i switched from using a foam brush to a roller and it worked much better.

  12. Andrea, these are so versatile and they look lovely! It is a pleasure to join you for the hop! Pinned! Blessings, Cecilia@My Thrift Store Addiction

  13. I absolutely love how this turned out! I love the blue and white! I also loved your tips on using the foam roller!! I’m inspired to try my first stencil!

  14. I can’t believe this was your first stencil, Andrea. It looks amazing! The white fern really stands out against the navy background. I love it! Thank you for co-hosting the craft hop. It was a lot of fun!

    1. Thanks Rebecca! It wasn’t my first one. I painted the other leaf and it was an epic fail so I tossed that one and it turned out so much better using a roller. haha!

  15. For a. Ladys first time its beautiful you have given me the confidence to try it.and.your.instructions.are so.easy.well done.you

    1. Thanks Karin! I linked up and happy to learn about your blog and read more.

      Andrea

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