Perfect Stencilling Using Chalk Paint - Tutorial by Imperfectly Perfect

Perfect Stencilling Using Chalk Paint

Perfect Stencilling Using Chalk Paint - Tutorial by Imperfectly Perfect

Tutorial by Imperfectly Perfect

Jo, professionally known as ‘Imperfectly Perfect’, is one of our most valuable customers. She runs bespoke furniture refurbishment shop, based in Weston Turville, Buckinghamshire and uses our stencils on daily basis. Her work and skills are stunning and we are very often simply amazed by the effects she achieve.

Perfect Stencilling - peonies pattern stencilled on a pink chest of drawersPerfect Stencilling - floral ornament, painted in multicolour on vertical wardrobe door.Perfect Stencilling - 'Articles de Paris' vintage stencil, grey on off-white backround, painted on vintage cupboard.

Jo kindly gave us a permission to use her tutorial on perfect stencilling using chalk paint. The stencils shown on images in the article are available in our shop.

Imperfectly Perfect’s tips for Perfect Stencilling using chalk paint.

Back again by popular demand . . . My tips for Perfect Stencilling using chalk paint.


Firstly, wax your painted piece and allow to dry (I leave it a couple of hours) then buff. Waxing first will allow you to wipe the stencil off easily if you make a mistake without damaging your paintwork.

Next, decant some paint onto a piece of kitchen towel and allow to thicken for a few minutes (chalk paint is perfect for this). Thicker paint is less likely to bleed under the stencil.

The brush

Next, choose your brush. I use a variety of brushes, depending on the size and detail of the stencil. For large stencils I use old chalk paint brushes, when they’ve worn down and are thicker. For small thin stencils, like script writing, I use fine detail brushes (see image 2).

Perfect Stencilling - getting started with a paint Perfect Stencilling - work in progress Perfect Stencilling - work in progress

With your stencil in place (I use a low-tack masking tape to secure) dip your chosen brush into the paint and then knock most of it off onto the kitchen towel. The main cause of bleed is having too much paint on your stencil.


Hold your brush at a 90 degree angle (straight down) to the stencil and gently stipple, building up the colour as you go. Work your way across the stencil replenishing your paint when necessary.

Perfect Stencilling - chalk paint techniques Perfect Stencilling - chalk paint techniques Perfect Stencilling - chalk paint techniques

For a darker finish, go back to the start of the stencil and repeat.

Final touches

When you’ve finished, gently peel one end of the stencil back to check that you’ve got the coverage you’re looking for.

Small amounts of bleed can be gently tidied with a damp cotton bud, however, if you’re unhappy with the overall finish, as you’ve waxed the piece beforehand, you can gently wipe the areas you’re unhappy with clean with a wet wipe and allow to dry before trying again.

When you’re happy with your stencil leave to dry (for dark colours, especially AS Graphite, I’d leave overnight). Once dry, gently rub with clear wax to seal.

Now stand back and admire your work 🥰

Preserve your stencil

And don’t forget to preserve your stencil by wiping it clean afterwards. I place my stencils over a piece of kitchen paper and wipe with a wet wipe. The excess paint on the stencil will gradually work through onto the towel leaving an imprint. I would recommend you do this for both sides of the stencil.

And that’s it my lovelies, happy stenciling 😃


We would like to say big thank you to Jo for letting us use her tutorial.
If you like the magical transformations she performs on furniture you should visit her website: Imperfectly Perfect Bespoke Furniture.
For updates and whats-on you may wish to visit her Facebook page.

Find the stencils used in the tutorial

You can find the stencil used in the tutorial by browsing our shop or clicking the icons below.

Main image of Peony Flower Ornamental Pattern StencilMain image of French Stencil Articles de Paris - Clouterie AdvertShabby Chic Stencil: Cheval Blanc HotelShabby Chic Stencil Wild Flowers Bunch Ornamental PatternMain image - Acanthus abstract floral pattern stencil


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