Stenciling has become a décor statement-and has made a retro comeback (handcrafting has gained in popularity. The craft allows do-it-yourselfers to put their own personal stamp on their projects, even if they lack artistic ability), according to national stenciling expert Jane Gauss and Melanie Royals, founder of stencil maker Royal Design Studio (www.royaldesignstudio.com).
Simple, graphic motifs are very popular, as are subdued metallics and raised designs created with plaster or similar materials. All-over patterns such as oversized florals and chevrons are a hot trend. The newer stencils allow a design to be completed.quickly .An especially popular look is a subtle tone-on-tone look (this is created by stenciling the design in slightly lighter or darker hue of the background color). Stenciling is often used on feature walls (like a fireplace wall or the wall behind a headboard). Stencils are also used on floor coverings, ceilings, glass, tile and fabric.
Royals’ Tips and ideas
The traditional technique is applying paint with a nearly dry stencil brush, using a pouncing or swirling motion, but many people prefer foam rollers instead. The roller technique requires more patience because the roller has to be loaded with paint and then “off loaded” (rolled on absorbent paper to remove much of the paint). Only a small amount of paint can be applied at a time, or the excess will bleed under the stencil.
Latex and acrylic craft paints are good choices for stenciling; oil paints are excellent for a sheer look or specially made stencil creams. If you’re going to latex wall paint for roller stenciling, buy sample size quantities of a good quality, like Benjamin Moore Aura (lesser-quality ones will “run” on you). And buy good-quality brushes and/or stencil rollers (they’ll make the job better).
There’s an abundance of good stencils online, but they can be pricey; shop around before you buy!
Source: “Fashionably Fresh”-McClatchy Newspapers–The (Sunday) Vindicator, March 3, 2013
Light Bulb Facts
Here’s a few statistics from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star Program (the program approves light fixtures and bulbs that are at least 75 percent more efficient than traditional lighting):
The average U S home has about 30 light fixtures.
By replacing your home’s five most frequently used bulbs, you can save $70 each year.
You can save energy in 3-way and dimmable fixtures, too. Look for CFL and LED bulbs in packages marked “dimmable” or “3-way” to make sure your’re getting a bulb that works.
Source: “Energy Hog”-McClatchy Newspapers–The (Sunday) Vindicator, February 24, 2013