Stenciling Damask. Two words I never thought I’d hear myself saying, and never ever thought I’d actually do. (Please notice the title is not how to stencil damask, alright?)
Stencil? Ok, maybe. I’m slowly becoming a convert after years and years of failed attempts. But Damask? unh-uh. Not that I don’t love the damask pattern. I do. I love the circular swirls and scrolls with accents of diamonds. I love that it has a slight middle eastern feel without being obvious. I like that it adds a classic elegance to rooms.
But in black and white? Classic. Elegant. Timeless. Speaking of black and white, try this – google ‘damask’ and then click Images on the left side bar under Search. Go ahead. I’ll wait . . . .
See how many of the images are black & white? Amazing, right?
That’s exactly what I thought when I was shopping at Michael’s the other day, looking for anything damask on the smallish side. I needed a small pattern because I’m painting an 8 x 10” canvas. I wanted damask because the painting is for my soon-to-be niece who’s into damask right now.
Do you ever get something in your head and nothing else will do? (please say yes.) I looked at stencils. Not small enough. I looked at scrapbook paper to decoupage onto the canvas. Ehhh, just okay. I walked up and down every dang aisle. damaskdamaskdamask.
I came home with this piece of damask scrapbook paper.
Before we go any further, do you know how to pronounce damask? Is it duh-MASK? Or DUH-mask? Damask. Maybe it’s dam-ASSSK. Or DAM-asssk. After spending an hour in Michael’s, believe me, I called it dam-assk and didn’t care where the accent was. (it’s da’-mask. I checked. )
Anyhoo, what really shocked me was the bridal aisle in Michaels. Tons of damask. Tons of black & white damask. On everything. Who knew? I guess girls planning weddings knew, that’s who. Then when I got home and googled ‘damask’, well, you know what happened.
After all of that, I just needed 3 strips for a border around the bottom half of the canvas. Easy-peasy, right? Strips 1 & 2, no problems. Strip 3? Ruh-roh. If you’ve ever wallpapered (or stenciled, ha ha) you know what a ‘repeat’ is. Well, I’ve never wallpapered *shock* nor stenciled a wall *double-shock* but I used to sew a lot and I DO know what a pattern repeat is. I just hadn’t considered it until I tried to match the pattern up.
Plan B – Martha to the rescue.
Who cares that these stencils are basically made for glass? Not me. Or that they’re adhesive-backed? Cool! Saves me an extra step.
But since I already had problems matching a pattern, I figured I’d better try a test pattern first, especially since I’m not big on the whole add/divide/multiply/orwhatever to actually calculate and plot the design.
I grabbed a piece of watercolor paper, traced the 8 x 10, and then marked the border and started stenciling. In grey.
Why grey and not the intended black? baahhk bak bak bak. I’mma chicken. Yep. Me. With paint. Chicken. Black is, well, black! Yes, I know it’s only a sample. So I got some *issues*, ok?
This just might work. But it looks a little . . . sparse.
Ok, better. ‘Cept for the over-painting. I’m so glad I did a test sample before I smooshed black paint all over a freshly painted white canvas.
Remember how I said these little stencils are adhesive-backed? I just wrapped it onto the side.
Not bad, not bad. Looks like pure black paint, doesn’t it? It’s not. I mixed flat black with a little light grey and a little white pearl, just to give it a bit of dimension.
Of course, I doubt anyone but me would notice, but if I like it then there’s a slim chance I won’t spend 3 weeks on tiny painting that should take me 3 hours.
Before I stenciled the bottom row, I taped off the border.
Next I grabbed a different little stencil, taped off all but a little portion so I could just fill in the empty spaces.
Oh, I didn’t mention that I was painting zebra stripes on the top, did I? Zebra. Another favorite of my soon-to-be niece. (just for fun, try googling “zebra and damask” Images. You won’t believe it.)
Next time I’ll show you what I’m painting in the middle. Any guesses?
What’s your favorite print or pattern? Do you just use it in both home décor and your wardrobe, or just one or the other?