In sunny Tampa, Florida, we come upon a studio giving a new, inspired second life to furniture pieces. Stiltskin Studios combine creative decorative paint techniques with lively ornamental patterns and stencil designs. We’re so happy to feature their work for our Stencil Star™ series, which seeks to showcase creative artists and their inspired work.
ABOUT STILTSKIN STUDIOS
Michele and Kenny Hiley of Stiltskin Studios are a husband and wife design team who have both made creativity a priority in their lives. They re-imagined many items for their homes and once their friends laid eyes on the possibilities, a business (along with an Etsy shop) was born! Although they offer a full-service design studio, their passion is to take vintage and antique furniture and transform them to fit into a more modern home. Their name was inspired by the fairy tale Rumplestiltskin because he turned a seemingly worthless object, straw, into Gold. They like to do the same with cast-aside furniture and uninspired interiors!
How do you determine which pattern will work for your project?
So many things influence our decision on which stencil to use…sometimes, it’s as simple as using a stencil as a fun accent, such as the Cherry Blossoms we used on a dresser face…other times, it’s to add interest to something that is mundane, like the leaves on a dining table. Often times, we will have a theme in mind…a general direction, such as a Parisian Apartment or a French Chateau feel, that helps guide our decision; other times, we utilize stencils to do something completely unexpected, like a Moroccan inspired tabletop on a French Provincial table.
Frequently, we’ll be painting a piece when out of nowhere, inspiration strikes and suddenly, we decide to incorporate a stencil that was not in the initial design plan. Painting, for us, is a very organic experience. We enjoy the process and stencils are another bespoke element to make each piece truly special.
This lovely and artistic dining room set was painted with Chalk Paint™ and our Small Ribbon Damask stencil on the leaves. We love this inspired idea and so we featured it here on our Stencil Ideas blog.
Please share your top Stenciling tip with us.
A very wise and charming faux painting artist taught me to make sure all the excess paint was removed from my brush before I applied it to the stencil. That seemingly small tip brought us both over from not being huge stencil fans to wanting to stencil everything!
Additionally, there is no substitute for proper tools. They make the job go so much smoother and help ensure perfect results. Cheap tools typically beget cheap looking results!
What would be your “dream” stencil project?
Right now, I’m dreaming about stenciling my kitchen cabinets! We completed the upper cabinets last year (removing the doors to create open shelving) but the lowers are still hideous 1970’s brown laminate. I’m quite excited to have the option to stencil them…we feel the project will be very much representative of us and our style.
How does stenciling enhance your creative business?
My husband and partner, Kenny, has an art degree and is a skilled fine artist; I, on the other hand, can barely paint a straight line. I have much more imagination than skill when it comes to the details of hand painting. Stencils really allow me to create what I’ve imagined. I’m also slightly lazy, so I’ll not make the effort to put a design on the projector, sketch it on the piece, and then hand-paint the intricate design. Stencils alleviate all that work for me. Royal Design Studio stencils really are simple to use, the results are consistent, and I look like a creative genius when it’s all done! Because they are so durable, we can mix it up with different colors and looks using the same stencil. They’ve enabled me to bring my creative vision to life!
We hope you’ve enjoyed the beautiful fairy-tale stylings of Stiltskin Studios. Do be sure to check their Facebook page and their wonderful blog, too! Please feel free to pin these pics to keep sharing the creative love of pattern and paint! You can always follow our Pinterest account as well for design and pattern inspiration and keep up with us on Facebook and Instagram, too!