My life is to make everything around me beautiful.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Stencilling the Ottoman Cover

There won't be my regular photos of all kinds of lovely things today as I'm going to explain how I did a stencil for the ottoman cover. Of course, there will be photos, but just the ones I've taken this past week trying to get something pretty made for the ottoman. Read and find out how I did it.

I've been a stenciller for about 30 years. Walls in our home in California and Idaho have been stencilled with many variations of stencils from animals to vines to rose swags to ivy to wisteria to you-name-it. I've been paid to stencil some gorgeous homes. This was a sideline and not my day job, read about that here. I just loved doing it so much that I'd do it for nothing if I could. But I simply cannot do it any more at my age. It's harder on the feet and legs being on a ladder than it is my shoulders and arms. Anyway, that's neither here nor there. This is a story about making a cover for the "world's ugliest ottoman." Bear with me while I tell the story.

The new white shag rug in our dining area. The old one went with our granddaughter back to Washington state when they were here a couple of weeks ago. I love how the new white brightens up the area.

As I mentioned in the earlier post above about the ottoman, I was thinking of stenciling something on it. I sat down one morning and the saga began! Notice the seats of the white chalk painted French cane chairs. Hubby has made boards for it so the cane doesn't get stretched or broken. I'll be making ruffled covers for it soon, but this is how they look at the moment.

I had no clue what I wanted on it except for the phrase "La Maison Rose" since I absolutely do live in a pink house. Hubby queried me saying, "You don't think people KNOW you live in a pink house?" I told him to shut up; that's the main phrase going on the drop cloth cover top.

The problem was aligning the letters properly. I searched for the font I wanted at Michaels, Joanns and finally Hobby Lobby. I could not find a font with caps and small letters in the size I wanted. I settled for 2 different fonts in 2 different sizes. One a size 3 and one a size 1 3/8". I practiced several times on pieces of white paper.

This is Martha Stewart kit bought at Michaels. It just wasn't big enough at 1 3/8".

I then tested it on the drop cloth fabric. Below are 2 different colors. Top is Apple Barrel Dusty Lilac and bottom is Lavender. At first I like the Dusty Lilac best but I changed my mind later.

Then I got a the font size 3" at Hobby Lobby. I combined the two and actually they looked pretty dang good together. My problem was alignment. Hubs helped, need I say more. Total disaster. I had to use Goof-Off paint remover to remove the first stencil. I for sure was NOT going to remake that ottoman cover!

I had to put it away for a day to get over my flop. But I wasn't discouraged because I knew I could do something else.

The "M" below is the Hobby Lobby font and the "A" is the Martha Stewart kit font. Two different fonts that actually went well together.

But I messed up royally on the position of the letters. That's what happens when you want to hurry and see results. I'm sure you can see the disastrous results below.

Another shot.

And another shot. I'm shameless to show you all these but it is a teaching moment, you know. The color of the drop cloth is a very pretty beige with a purplish cast as shown in the above photo. The photo below this photo was taken with lights on and doesn't show the actual color of the cloth. It really is more like this one here.

Then while cleaning out my stencils in a huge artist's portfolio bag, I came across this smaller font. It's a straight sheet with all caps aligned perfectly and I practiced one time on paper and three times on scraps of the drop cloth fabric. While you can't see the faint effects of the paint on the preceding photos, you can see it faintly on this photo. I also used a beautiful stencil I bought from Dee-Signs many years ago called "Armoire Collection" for 2 of the corners. Then I thought I'd very faintly stencil some French words on the top in several places. I've started doing that but I can only do so much in one day. I'll still have to wash it off to get the pencil marks off where I put them, not Love Bunny. ;-) I have now washed this cover a total of 4 times and it still doesn't need ironing. I love this fabric—a simple drop cloth from Home Depot for $20! I'll be buying another one for the chair covers with ruffles.

My son, granddaughter, her hubby and 2 great granddaughters when they were here 2 weeks ago. Our son is her uncle; my daughter is her mother.

This is an old drawer I bought at a garage sale for about a dollar many years ago and painted pink. I'm going to paint it white I think. It looks white here but really is very pink. The camera flash wiped out the color somewhat. But I stuck some faux geraniums I got at Michaels in them and put them on the coffee table in our family room.

The New York City Police Department has a $3.3 billion annual budget, larger than all but nineteen of the world's armies.
Linking up with NMH Open House