Painting stenciled designs on reclaimed wood is trending for a variety of reasons. It looks both shabby and chic, it fits with just about any type of decor (whether your place is a luxurious penthouse or a family farmhouse) and it’s just so darn easy. It brings a beautiful touch of nature into your home, serving as a reminder of what we can truly be grateful for. These pieces can be extremely complimentary with the other wood furniture in your home, especially your existing wood flooring.

Here are some great tips on how to get country-chic chalk stenciled art in your summer home!

1. Locate the piece of wood you’d like to stencil.

To start, find a piece of reclaimed wood, a pallet and some tools, or hit up the local craft store for some already assembled variations of wood. Here are some of our favorite pieces to start with:

2. Next, find a stencil.

You can make a custom stencil on your own, if you have a machine like a Silhouette Cameo or Cricut, or you can order a custom stencil from a site like Etsy. There are also numerous premade beautiful or fun stencils you can pick up from the store. Here are some of our favorite stencils for late summer and early fall:

“It is Well With My Soul”

“Backyard Rules”

“Faith Family Freedom”

3. You’ll need paint, chalk-paint, or some kind of variation.

If you’re painting on a chalkboard, you can use some kind of chalk or chalkboard marker. If you’re painting on wood, you can use paint, or a type of chalk stencil paint that’s recently become popular. Here are some of our favorites:

Chalkology Paste in Custard

Chalkology Paste in Aquamarine

We absolutely recommend that you use a chalk paste, instead of a paint for this part. They’re affordable, reusable, and the design will wipe off with some pressure (as if you were erasing a chalkboard) when you’re done with it. However, if you wanted to use a paint-- Cascade is one of the most beautiful and popular colors that there is on the market.

4. Apply!

To apply:

  1. Clean your surface - You’ll first want to clean your surface. Make sure there is no dust, or spiderwebs, if you’re using reclaimed wood, and that there aren’t any price tags or sticky residue if it’s store bought. And in either case, you’ll want to check for splinters.
  2. Center your piece - When your surface is completely dry, you’ll make sure to use a ruler to center your piece (the eyes can really mislead you, so it’s better to find the true center of both your stencil and your board, dot each, and then match the dots up). You’ll also want to go around the edges to make sure there are equal distances to the sides all the way around.
  3. Tape your stencil down - Tape your stencil down to make sure it won’t move. If you’re using a vinyl stencil or stencil from a company that has a vinyl or sticky backing, it’s important to get all of the bubbles out so that your design isn’t crooked. If you don’t have a sticky backing, it’s important that you continue to depress the stencil the entire time so that you don’t get paint underneath any of the edges.
  4. Paint -- Depending on the product, you’ll want to scrape with a scraper tool in long motions if you’re using chalk powder or putty. You’ll want to use a drawing motion if using a chalk pen, and for any other kind of paint -- you’ll want to use a stencil or coarse bristled brush always dabbing in a motion from sky to stencil.
  5. Dry -- Let your paint or paste dry completely before you take off the stencil. If it’s wet, you’ll be sad as it moves your paint into places it’s not supposed to go. You’ll also want to dry off the back of the stencil so that you’ll know the difference between the front and the back for next time.

  6. The best part about this look is that it’s so easy to do, you can do a different one for each room of the home. As a bonus, if you’ve done this on a chalkboard surface (or prepared your surface with chalkboard surface paint), you’ll be able to completely erase whenever you want, and you can change the saying as soon as the next season starts.

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