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Printable Stencil Designs

Updated on September 7, 2014

Printable Stencils for Crafts and Home Décor

Whether you're decorating a room or an object, like a bird house or a chair, printable stencil designs let you add an extra design element and bit of flair.

Some of the stencil designs shown here have a child theme suitable for use in a child's room or to decorate a toy box or other object. Other stencils I've found would be perfect for stenciling a border around a room or to use to stencil a wood floor.

When you paint a stencil either at the top border of a room or as a chair-rail design, it is so much easier to "remove" when you're tired of it. Wallpaper is more expensive to buy in the first place and is also much harder to take down. With a painted stencil, you can paint right over the stencil when you want a change.

Painted crafts have a more finished professional look when a stencil is used, unless you're an artist. I'm not an artist, so I use stencils.

To print this cowboy printable stencil, visit The Graphics Fairy.

Make your own stencils with an acetate "box" or sleeve and an Xacto knife.
Make your own stencils with an acetate "box" or sleeve and an Xacto knife.

How to Make Printable Stencil Patterns

It's easy!

The best way to use printable stencils is to print the stencil design on acetate paper. Acetate is a plastic-type sheet that holds up well to paint.

You can also print the stencil on plain paper and take the paper stencil to the copy shop to print it on acetate paper. Another option is to print the stencil on paper and trace it onto acetate paper.

Next, take a sharp craft or graphics knife--an Xacto knife works great--and place the stencil on a self-healing mat or other surface that won't get damaged (or you don't mind getting damaged!) and that won't damage your knife. Tape the stencil down to hold it in place.

Cut away the portions of the stencil that will end up being the design on the object or wall. The cut away portion will be the stencil design that you will paint onto an object or wall.

Begin by cutting out the largest pieces. Make firm cuts but stop before you need to to ensure you don't cut more of the stencil away than you want to. Practice on another piece of acetate if needed to get the feel for it. Continue cutting out the parts of the stencil till the complete image is removed that will be the stencil image to be painted.

Use scissors if needed in corners and tight spots for clean lines on your stencils.

Photo Credit: Peggy Hazelwood

When you print these stencils,

use heavy card stock or

acetate film paper (preferred).

This way they'll hold up when you

paint on top of them. And they wipe clean.

Use Blue Painter's Tape - to Hold the Stencil in Place

This blue tape sticks in place but also removes easily when you need to move a stencil. I've used the same stencil to add a border or chair rail around a room. Affixing the stencil with blue tape keeps it in place while you paint then makes life easier when it's time to move it to the next spot.

Stencil Tools - Acetate paper, Xacto knife, self-healing mat

To make your own stencils, you'll need heavy paper. Acetate paper works best. You'll also need an Xacto knife to cut out the stencil design. Be sure to cut on a self-healing mat or surface that will not dull your blade or be damaged when cutting.

BEWARE: Cutting stencils is not a job for children.

Xacto X5282 Basic Knife Set
Xacto X5282 Basic Knife Set

Cut out all your stencils from simple to intricate with the right Xacto knives.

 

Fashion Frog Fun Stencils for Craft Projects - Click a small image to enlarge it. Visit the Fashion Frog Web site (link provided above).

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Hand print stencil. Poppy stencil to print. Source:  Fashion FrogPrintable stencil -- cute frog! Source:  Fashion FrogDoodle design printable stencil.Source: Fashion FrogPaisley stencil. Source: Fashion Frog
Hand print stencil.
Hand print stencil. | Source
Poppy stencil to print. Source:  Fashion Frog
Poppy stencil to print. Source: Fashion Frog
Printable stencil -- cute frog! Source:  Fashion Frog
Printable stencil -- cute frog! Source: Fashion Frog
Doodle design printable stencil.Source: Fashion Frog
Doodle design printable stencil.Source: Fashion Frog
Paisley stencil. Source: Fashion Frog
Paisley stencil. Source: Fashion Frog

Be sure to change the size of your stencil before printing it, as needed.

If you're printing on acetate paper, do a dry run by printing the stencil on plain paper first to see if it's the right size.

Stencils for Walls - Click a small image to enlarge it. Visit the Stencil Ease Web site (link above) to print these stencil patterns.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Printable tulip stencil. Printable stencil of dragonfly. Source:  Stencil EaseButterfly printable stencil. Source:  Stencil EaseFloral swirl stencil. Source:  Stencil Ease
Printable tulip stencil.
Printable tulip stencil. | Source
Printable stencil of dragonfly. Source:  Stencil Ease
Printable stencil of dragonfly. Source: Stencil Ease
Butterfly printable stencil. Source:  Stencil Ease
Butterfly printable stencil. Source: Stencil Ease
Floral swirl stencil. Source:  Stencil Ease
Floral swirl stencil. Source: Stencil Ease

Wall Stencils -- Traditional Designs

DecoArt TS04-B Texture Stencils by Tracy Moreau, Brocade and Berry Borders
DecoArt TS04-B Texture Stencils by Tracy Moreau, Brocade and Berry Borders

Add a touch of Art Deco to your wall with these brocade stencils.

 
Delta Creative Stencil Magic Accents 8-1/2x11-1/4": Cherry Blossoms
Delta Creative Stencil Magic Accents 8-1/2x11-1/4": Cherry Blossoms

A simple stencil can be reused and repeated to make a lovely statement.

 

Removable Tape + Stencil

= Happy Painter

Use removable tape to hold stencils in place so you can move them around easily on the wall or object.

This is very handy when you are overlapping or butting the stencil design up against itself.

How to Make a Stencil on the Computer - With no printer, no less!

This is a 2-minute video that tells so much so quickly!

Alphabet Stencils and Letter Stencils

The ways to use letter and number stencils can boggle the mind. Here are just a few ideas:

~ Add your street number to the curb or mailbox.

~ Add your child's name to a toy box or tricycle.

~ Write a quote on the wall with stencils (much cheaper than those wall decals) and you can paint right over it!).

A design trick when using stencils is to tint the wall paint color with another color.

Then stencil using the mixture color. This gives a subtle stencil that isn't overpowering in the room.

Would You Rather Use Stencil Designs or Wall Decals?

Which do you prefer?

Stencils. They're cheaper and you can paint right over the designs when you're tired of them!

Stencils. They're cheaper and you can paint right over the designs when you're tired of them!

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    • Peggy Hazelwood 4 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      I'll vote for stencils because they are fun to paint on and come out looking great! And I'm cheap. Paint is cheaper than wall decals.

    Wall Decals. Just peel them off when you want a new look!

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      • Barbara Tremblay Cipak 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

        I have to say wall decals, that's one of my niches' lol! - I do like stencils though, because they allow a person to feel more involved in the 'artsy' aspect of decorating..versus just putting up a decal

      Stencil Brushes and Paint - Stenciling is fun and is a forgiving technique. Just wipe the paint away and go again if needed.

      Decorative Stencils for Cooking and Baking - Decorate Cakes and Cupcakes with Stencils

      Yes, stencils for cakes and cupcakes! Dress up your baked goods with intricate designs that are easy as pie!

      Stencil Projects for Halloween - For Carving Pumpkins and Party Decorations

      Using stencils for pumpkins helps you get a more polished look to your carving and Halloween decorating!

      Affiliate Disclosure

      This author, Peggy Hazelwood, participates in Amazon, eBay, All Posters, and other affiliate advertising programs. When you click an advertising link on this page and make a purchase, I receive a small percent of the sale. Thank you for reading this far!

      Let me know you dropped by to see the printable stencils.

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        • Ann Hinds profile image

          Ann Hinds 5 years ago from So Cal

          Great lens that I am adding to my Glass Wax lens for additional ideas for window decoration. Thanks

        • profile image

          mockingbird999 5 years ago

          Nice stencils. The holiday ones are really nice.

        • profile image

          termit_bronx 5 years ago

          Blue Wizard Stencil Design is great. It reminds me on Harry Potter movies :D

        • profile image

          seedplanter 5 years ago

          What a refreshing lens! I love the idea of creating my own stencils. Thanks!

        • LinkCollection profile image

          LinkCollection 5 years ago

          so cute, im going to get some for my baby girl

        • Close2Art LM profile image

          Close2Art LM 5 years ago

          Stencils are fun to use over and over, great lens and some really neat stencils...:)RWJR

        • profile image

          getmoreinfo 5 years ago

          These are really nice I like to use stencils in my paper card designs, really adds some style to each art piece.

        • Leilani-m profile image

          Leilani-m 5 years ago

          Love this, I love stenciling, it's a great way to fresh up interiors and give them personality :)

        • profile image

          anonymous 5 years ago

          Some fun ideas here - great lens subject.

        • curious0927 profile image

          curious0927 5 years ago

          Another super fun lens! I am a "stencil hog" and have made my own with the "card stock" or hard paper! I love to make things, maybe someday I will put them to good use! Great lens! Bookmarked and Blessed!

        • Pam Irie profile image

          Pam Irie 5 years ago from Land of Aloha

          Hadn't thought about printing out stencils to use, but it's a viable idea. Hmmmmm

        • Diana Wenzel profile image

          Renaissance Woman 5 years ago from Colorado

          Excellent tips. Thank you! You are so right about stencils being an easier option than wallpaper trim (when it is time to redecorate). Great idea, too, about using a subtle tint in the existing wall paint color. I have always liked the look of a stencil border. Appreciate the stencil website link.

        • profile image

          windowtintinghelp 5 years ago

          This is nice, thanks for sharing.

          A Squidoo Like for you :)

        • kislanyk profile image

          Marika 5 years ago from Cyprus

          Some lovely designs here, but I'm partial to stencils anyway :)

        • profile image

          AngryBaker 5 years ago

          Great Ideas!

        • MarcoG profile image

          Marc 5 years ago from Edinburgh

          A very inspiring lens!

        • BestRatedStuff profile image

          BestRatedStuff 5 years ago

          I enjoyed this lens, tips and designs.

        • Zodiacimmortal profile image

          Kim 4 years ago from Yonkers, NY

          oooh love the lavin house décor pic, too cool.

        • profile image

          myamya 4 years ago

          Very nice lens, well done! Squidlike

        • profile image

          anonymous 4 years ago

          I don't think I've seen printable stencils anywhere else and what a great idea. You say that you are not an artist but you certainly are artistic! I love your sticky note tips along the way, sharing what you've learned by trial and error.

        • SheGetsCreative profile image

          Angela F 4 years ago from Seattle, WA

          I picked up a box of overhead transparencies at a garage sale a few years ago for 50 cents -- now I know exactly what they could be used for!

        • Scarlettohairy profile image
          Author

          Peggy Hazelwood 4 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

          @Lee Hansen: Oh, how fun! Maybe you can write an article about that process!

        • Scarlettohairy profile image
          Author

          Peggy Hazelwood 4 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

          @SheGetsCreative: Great idea!

        • Lenskeeper profile image

          Lenskeeper 4 years ago

          I like the idea of making your own stencils. They decorative..and cheap!

        • WriterJanis2 profile image

          WriterJanis2 4 years ago

          Never even thought about making my own stencil designs. What a great idea. Sprinkling angel blessings here.

        • profile image

          anonymous 4 years ago

          never seen printable stencils anywhere before. really nice

        • KimGiancaterino profile image

          KimGiancaterino 4 years ago

          I have a nice collection of stencils, but have never made my own. Thanks for a thorough tutorial.

        • profile image

          kathryn-gillespie 4 years ago

          Great ideas! Nice lens!

        • profile image

          mumsgather 4 years ago

          I've never tried to do a stencil before but this certainly gives me some ideas.

        • John Dyhouse profile image

          John Dyhouse 4 years ago from UK

          I like your advice about keeping the stenciled pattern in subtle colours, very contrasting stencilcs spoil the effect in mu humble opinion. I don't use them often but we have simple star shapes stenciled around the walls in one room and it looks really good.

        • Melissa Miotke profile image

          Melissa Miotke 4 years ago from Arizona

          Great stencil designs. Blessed!

        • profile image

          anonymous 4 years ago

          Hi I like toys

        • profile image

          anonymous 4 years ago

          @mumsgather: Hi

        • JuneNash profile image

          June Nash 4 years ago

          Thanks for the tips on how to make my own stencils. My mind is now reeling with the possibilities!

        • profile image

          Deida999 4 years ago

          Nice lense with great infor!

        • LouisaDembul profile image

          LouisaDembul 4 years ago

          I'm planning on painting the children's room when winter is over, and I think I could use one of these printable stencils. Great advice on how to make it easier for me!

        • Cynthia Haltom profile image

          Cynthia Haltom 4 years ago from Diamondhead

          I have always liked stencils. They can be so decorative and very economical and really add a bit of pizzazz to a room.

        • Rhonda Lytle profile image

          Rhonda Lytle 4 years ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

          Stencils are so much fun and can be used on just about anything. Great collection you have here. Thank you for sharing it.

        • gottaloveit2 profile image

          gottaloveit2 4 years ago

          We just finished a remodel on the bathroom in WV - you've given me a great idea for decorating - the wall decals of course!

        • profile image

          anonymous 3 years ago

          Commercial stencils are SOOOooooo expensive! Thanks for the resources for cheap!

        • SandyMertens profile image

          Sandy Mertens 3 years ago from Frozen Tundra

          I would like to use the designs. It is fun and easy to do. Tried to add to the duel above but it wouldn't take.

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