Crafts Beautiful Magazine

Create stylish contemporary wall art to brighten up your home

What you need...
  • MDF boards, 38cm square, 18mm deep, three
  • Stencil, agapanthus
  • Emulsion, latex, matt, ivory
  • Sandpaper
  • Tack rag
  • Varnish, acrylic, matt
  • Brush, fitch, medium, artist's
  • Tape, painting or masking, 5cm
  • Pencil and ruler
  • Palette, divided or paper plate
  • Stencil sponges and kitchen towel
  • Adhesive, spray, repositionable
  • Paints, stencil: medium purple, dark purple, medium blue, dark blue, sage, dark green, lilac metallic or interference
  1. Flower Blooms - Sand the top and sides of the MDF boards until smooth. Base paint with two coats of ivory matt emulsion (latex), sanding between coats to create an even surface. Use a tack rag to remove all traces of dust. Apply one coat of acrylic matt varnish to seal and protect.

    Make a series of light pencil registration marks 5cm from the left edge of each board. Stick a strip of painting tape along the outer edge of the marks on each board. Use the artist's fitch brush to apply a thin layer of acrylic matt varnish along the left side of the tape – this will prevent paint from bleeding under this edge, thus creating a sharp line.

    Use a medium purple stencil paint or similar matt emulsion colour to paint a 5cm band on the left edge of each board, inside the tape. Leave to dry and then apply a second coat. Once this has dried, apply a fine overlayer of lilac metallic or interference paint. Carefully peel away the tape.

    Apply repositionable spray adhesive to the reverse side of the first layer of the stencil. Stick the main flower section of the design on the first board to the right of the painted purple band. Smooth your hand over the design to make sure all cut-out shapes and bridges are firmly stuck down.

    Use the medium purple paint to stencil some of the flower shapes of the agapanthus heads. Work with a nearly dry sponge, and then over-stencil a second and third time to build up depth and opacity of colour. Use the medium blue paint to stencil the remainder of the flower shapes in the same way.

    Use the sage green paint to stencil the main stems and those within each flower head. Then add tonal variation to the stems with the leaf green and a little purple and blue paint 'blushed on' in places.

    Use the medium purple to overstencil and blend the blues and purples on the flower heads. Add a few highlights with the lilac metallic or interference paint. Carefully peel away the stencil and repeat the same process on the remaining two boards.

    Apply repositionable spray adhesive to the reverse side of the second layer of the stencil and position over the first layer, lining up the flower stamens and stalk details within the stencilled shapes of the first layer.

    Use the dark purple and blue paints to stencil the stamens, building up depth of colour by by repeated layering as before. Also add darker green and purple to the stems. Repeat the process on the remaining two boards and leave them to dry.

    To hang up the three boards, use a ruler and pencil to mark up two points on the back of each board, positioned 5cm in from each side edge and from the top of the board. Drill a hole 6mm deep into the board. You will need to make two holes at the top of each board. Use a drill bit that is wide enough to drill a hole slightly larger than the diameter of the screws you will be using in the wall.

    Position the three completed boards so that they hang in a horizontal row with about a 1cm gap between each one. Position, mark up and fix the six screws to hang the pictures accordingly.

'Creative Wall Art' by Henny Donovan, features 25 original designs to copy and adapt, including cityscapes, portraits, nature themes and children's motifs. Each project is demonstrated with step-by-step photographs and requires only basic decorating skills and inexpensive, readily available tools and materials. Published by Apple Press and priced at £12.99, it is available from all good bookshops.

To purchase a copy directly online, go to – agapanthus stencils, paints and equipment – large general range of traditional and commercial stencils and accessories

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