Home / Stencil Ideas / Before + After / Plain Bar Stools Go Glam With Stencil Cremes + Chalk Paint®!

Plain Bar Stools Go Glam With Stencil Cremes + Chalk Paint®!

Stenciling Bar Stools project

I adore our four simple and backless contemporary bar stools. Originally maple and black metal, but in need of an upgrade, I first painted them plain old Aubusson Blue Chalk Paint® and finished them off with Annie Sloan Clear Wax. Recently, I realized that they were too bland for me. I want more. I ALWAYS want more! Right now, I want classy with toned colors that accentuate our kitchen and adjacent living room.

Before and After Stencil Project

Fortunately, an easy solution was at hand! One of the magical properties of Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan is that you can paint right over a previously painted surface that has been sealed with Annie Sloan Soft Wax! So, after falling in love with Royal Design Studios Meknes Circles Stencil, I jumped right in on this fast and basic project because I knew I could paint right on top of the previously painted and waxed stools with no prep. The most difficult decisions were A) what is my new base coat color for the stools and B) what colors should I stencil the pattern?

Stencil Project with Chalk Paint and Stencil Cremes

The answers? I decided on Old White Chalk Paint® for the base coat and a range of Metallic Stencil Cremes paint colors for the stenciling on the seats: Patina  Green, Metallic Teal, Antique Silver and Antique Gold

If you are new to these Stencil Cremes and want to give them a try, a simple project like this is perfect. If you have been using them already, you know just how creamy and luscious they are. The colors are gorgeous, and used with Royal Design Studio Stencil Brushes, Stencil Cremes are the bomb for both quick coverage and soap and water cleanup!

I love to use this old wooden tray that is perfect to carry goodies from my studio to rooms all around the house. As you can see, I loaded up my Old White Chalk Paint®, 4 Stencil Cremes, stencil and paint brushes, good quality paper towels like Bounty, a pencil and tape measure plus tin foil and a clean rag. For cleaning your stencil after you are finished, you can use a product like Motsenbackers Lift-Off 5.

How to stencil with Stencil Cremes

  1. I used an Annie Sloan paint brush to paint two coats of the Old White (drying between coats), and just painted with no attention to pattern or direction. I let this dry-and Chalk Paint® dries VERY quickly!
  2. Then, I positioned the stencil. Since my stools were an odd shape that varied from front to back, I move the stencil around until I found a section of the design that I liked. You may want to measure the center point and place a small pencil mark. Some folks use a light misting of stencil spray (found online or a craft stores) on the back of the stencil, or tape, but for this I held the stencil down firmly with one hand and stenciled with the other.
  3. I poured a small amount of the paint onto the foil and using a straight up-and-down motion, dipped just the tip of the brush into the paint. I immediately “offloaded” excess paint by rubbing the brush firmly onto the paper towel in a hard circular motion. This helps distribute the paint evenly throughout the brush and removes excess paint, while leaving the brush drier which is THE key to successful stenciling. See the photo above – the brush is very dry but holds plenty of paint. You really don’t want to push the paint up underneath the stencil and a nice dry brush keeps a crisp design edge.
  4. Using  a circular motion and an even pressure, I swirled the brush over all of the openings of the stencil until all areas were covered completely.
  5. (Not shown) I then sealed the stools again with two coats of Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax.

Stenciled Bar Stools before and after

It was difficult to photograph just how lovely these colors really are. The gentle slope of the stool enhances the metallic colors which catch the light at different angles and just glow!

Now I hope you’re dying to try a similar project. I was thrilled to see the finished project and use our gorgeous new stools, but a bit sad for it to be over! This is clearly a symptom of a woman who loves a project!

Now it’s your turn. What kind of stencil projects does this inspire for you!

Royal Design Studio Wall Stencils and Paint Supplies for DIY Projects


  1. Your stools turned out so beautiful! Hmmm … looking around for things I hadn’t thought to stencil before … And sealing the stencil creme with the Annie Sloan clear wax – great idea!

    • One of the things that people LOVE about the Stencil Cremes is that you CAN go right over it with wax-as soon as it is dry to the touch. Sometimes the wax will dissolve acrylic craft paints, so just one more GREAT reason to use those Stencil Cremes!! 🙂

  2. Loving the combo possibilities! Can’t wait to share my workshop projects using stencil cremes on pillows and old books!!

  3. Debbie, I LOVE this project. Putting the stencil cremes on my “must have” list for the shop!

  4. Love the project and the colors. I’m inspired to get my stencils going again.

  5. Laurie Brennan

    I love what you did to these bar stools. This was the inspiration for my dresser makeover. I used a Royal Design Studio stencil and some of the same coloured stencil paints you used. Thanks for the inspiration!


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