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Gardz: Preparing For A Stencil Project

One of the issues that crops up occasionally with people using our Modello Decorative Painting Stencils is that the adhesive vinyl can pull the underlaying paint or finish off with it if the surface underneath wasn’t properly prepared and primed. What often happens in new construction is that the whole place is a dust bin, drywall mud is inherently chalky, and the painters will not properly clean and prime the surface prior to painting. Obviously, a layer of paint is not going to stick very well to a layer of dust! Apply tape or another adhesive backed material to it and pull it off and, well,  it’s NOT a pretty picture.


SO-when we were doing the build out on our new space here I needed some “insurance” for all those surfaces I knew I was going to be adding pattern with Modellos. Fortunately, I discovered Gardz-an amazing clear emulsion that virtually locks down the drywall and joint compound surfaces prior to painting. Using this makes your surface almost bulletproof. Case in point? My poor, neglected office that I sit in everyday and wish for a wish that would let me snap my fingers and make it done-like “poof”!


I put these Modello patterns up 9 month ago. Yes, it’s a very pathetic situation that I’ve been staring at this half-done ceiling for 9 mos., but also a great science experiment. You can see from these photos that the Modello pattern is pulling off NOTHING as it’s removed. Seriously, this is nothing short of amazing. The green tape has turned super sticky and the white vinyl is so old it’s almost cracking, but the paint surface underneath?? It’s perfect!


This is the room that has the above patterned floor I showed you here. I know what your thinking: All that pattern and all those bright colors must look Gawd awful. I swear it doesn’t-and I’ll prove it to you if and when I EVER finish this room.

Red Kitchen Island.jpg
Openwork chair.jpg

I have some added inspiration now that I’ve just ordered some additional furniture for it from my favorite catalog source-Gumps. This red kitchen island (for a storage piece) and two of these chairs (for important “executive” meetings)-both in the same red as the little accent table above, are all I need to kick by butt in gear to get this room done. I hope.


  1. Ah, I’m so there with you Melanie. I still have tape along the top of my kitchen walls. The office is beautiful though and I can totally see the great direction you are taking it in…there are no worries when it comes to your creative vision!

  2. You’re so sweet! Thanks for the encouragement!! This whole “multiple projects in process and not much getting done” stuff is getting old…..

  3. Oh Melanie, You are such a inspiration to me. And lately, I have been trying to surround myself with it. Since this last year ended sadly for me I am all about pulling my bootstraps up and getting on with what God has got for me. I know when your on the right path, everything seems to flow. Of course not without it’s challenges, but they do make us stronger, and all the more wiser. Thanks for being on your path! You don’t realize how many you touch!

  4. Hi Melanie – wish I knew this a few weeks ago – had a really ugly Modello ceiling issue! So if I were to use this on the ceiling do I have to paint the whole ceiling with it? Or just the opening in the Modello? Oh and where do I get it?

    Have a Blast with Maryam – looking forward to seeing what Crew #2 does!!

    Debbie Hayes

  5. Hi,

    Great Designs, the floral prints looks amazing. Definitely they add attractive look to the house.


  6. Where did you get that red kitchen island– i love it!!!!

  7. I have been looking for a kitchen island just like yours. Where did you find it?

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