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How to incorporate stencils into your next polished plaster project

Stencils and polished plaster may not sound like a natural match in your head, but the two go together beautifully.

What stencils do is they replace freehand art. This means, plainly, that artwork / detailing comes pre-cut as a stencil. The stencil can then be used to apply effects to a wall, or ceiling, in an efficient and repeatable way.

Regular stencils for paper are available online and in many art stores, but they aren’t durable enough for plastering. Instead, you want a heavy-duty mylar stencil which is made from stretched polyester film (plastic).

Using a stencil for plaster involves much the same process as with paint, except you skim the plaster over the template.

Stencils are available in various thicknesses to achieve 3D effects off the wall. A thin stencil would create very fine detailing, that would perhaps only be noticeable if pointed out, or if it caught the light or your eye.

Thicker stencils are used to give a wall standout detailing. Ornamental effects can be achieved with a thick stencil. Thicker stencils tend to be fixed into place, with the plaster applied in layers to build it up and fill it out.

Incorporating stencils into your next polished plaster project is a great way to add further pizzazz to the finish. Polished plaster is already beautiful, but with artwork and detailing it becomes much more interesting and cosmetic.

The polishing stage for artwork created by stencil must be performed delicately, because the surface area is much smaller than the wall. However, with care, it can be polished to the same glossy sheen as the rest of the wall.

Alternatively, you may choose to leave the stencilled plaster unfinished, or you may choose to paint it. These are just a few more ways to make stencilling interesting.

Something else to consider is the plaster mix itself. You see, you can add pigments to Venetian plaster. So, if you wanted to, you could give your stencils a beautiful colour without the need for any painting or post-finishing. You can apply new Venetian plaster to unfinished plaster for a strong, permanent bond.

Another way to make your stencilling stand out is to add gold dust, or another metal dust, to the mix. This would contrast beautifully with the white marble-like wall. Metallic detailing is very popular in high-end homes.

Of course, you also have the option of painting. Painting stencilled Venetian plaster is incredibly easy – you just fix the stencil back over the plaster and brush it or roll it. This will create a flawless finish if you take your time. We recommend metallic paints on polished plaster to really bring out the luxurious vibe.

At Chrysalis, we create bespoke decorative finishes for a wide range of clients. If you’re interested in Venetian plaster and stencilling for a project of your own, call us on 0772 548 8669 or send us a message and we’ll contact you within 24-hours.


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