stenciled china cabinet {a tutorial}


I’ve always wanted to try a stenciling project in my home….and I’m so glad I did! This Royal Designs Studio stencil turned this plain jane china cabinet into some amazing!

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

Having never stenciled anything before in my life, I was nervous about whether or not I’d be able to do it. But I can tell you now, there’s nothing to it (I loved it so much I purchased a second stencil for another project almost immediately after completing this project).

Here’s what you need:

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

I used the Endless Circles Lattice stencil for my project. It came (quickly) in the mail and included basic instruction on using the stencil. My biggest concern was being able to line it up correctly, which didn’t end up being a problem at all.

I used Martha Stewart stencil brushes for this (found at Michaels). I also used this Extender for my paint…

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

Royal Design Studio recommends Folk Art Extender, which I couldn’t find at my Michaels. I was thisclose to doing this without the use of an Extender, but decided at the last minute to see what Hobby Lobby had. And, let me tell you, using an extender is a must! I tried to both ways and definitely found the paint easier to work with using the extender. It makes the paint thinner and easier to manipulate, a must for stenciling projects.

And here’s the before picture of my china cabinet…

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

Now, just so you know, I didn’t actually stencil the inside of my china cabinet. Instead, I used foam board (found at Michaels), cut to fit the cabinet, and stenciled that.

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

I positioned the stencil at the top left of my board (following the clear direction that came with the stencil), loaded my brush, wiped off the excess and began. Now, I did not use a stencil adhesive. I figured that since I was working horizontally, it wasn’t necessary. I did, though, use some painters tape just to help me hold it in place.

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

 Almost done! I was really getting excited at this point…

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

This project took about 4 hours to complete, but the vast majority of that was drying time between coats.

royal design studio stenciled china cabinet

I luuurve how this turned out. I seriously couldn’t be happier.

How about you? Have you stenciled before? Do you want to learn? What in your home would be made happier by some stencil love?



  1. Your stencil came out beautifully! I haven’t stenciled for about 10 years and then it was those itty bitty craft stencils. I’m itching to give this a try on my closet doors!

    I really like the design you chose and that green, it’s so WOW!! You make it sound pretty easy and now I really wanna give it a try!

    • burlap+blueNo Gravatar says:

      Lisa-I was sooo hesitant at first, but I am so happy with how it turned out! You MUST try it:) xo

  2. What a pop of color can do! Nicely done! And I love your color choice, the green and touches of pink are so festive and inviting. Great idea using the foam board, leaving you the option to easily change it out later if you choose.

    • burlap+blueNo Gravatar says:

      Thanks, Debbie! The color was a risk (but one that I LOVE!)…and the second reason I wanted to use foam board? In case I messed up the first time, I could just turn the board over and try again! Luckily, that didn’t happen! xoxo

  3. Looks fantastic…and GREAT idea using the foam board instead of painting directly on the cabinet!!

    ~ Jillian

  4. Love it! Sharing on my FB page!

  5. I LOVE it. What a difference a little color makes, and if you’re ever “over” the green, you can make another one since its on foam board. Brilliant.

  6. misti d.No Gravatar says:

    so pretty! what a smart idea using foam board in case down the road you wanna change up!

  7. i love the pattern on the back :)

    great blog

  8. I love love love this Linda. You did a beautiful job!

  9. Gorgeous! Love the green!

  10. love love love what you’ve done. the color is so fresh, so now, and so katespade-y lovely!

    following you and hope you’re following back:

    have a wonderful weekend!


  11. the salvage collectionNo Gravatar says:

    this look absolutely amazing!

  12. Foam baord is an excellent idea – really sturdy and cheap too!

  13. Gorgeous! What color green paint did you use?

  14. Love the idea of doing it on Foam core – I was going to hang some paper in an armoire – but attaching it to foam core first would make it so much sturdier! Thanks!

  15. The foam core board is genius. That way if you ever change your mind it’s no big deal. I saw this featured over at Centsational Girl. I have pinned this gorgeous creation.

  16. I can’t get over how awesome this looks! I love all of the white milk glass & dishes you used in the cabinet… looks so clean and classy with the new backdrop. I had thought about using poster board to do something similar, but foam core is a much better idea. Thanks so much for sharing!

  17. What is the brand name of the paint extender you used? It is covered by the price sticker in the photo.

  18. I just recently purchased a stencil from Royal Creations but I tried to stencil the back of a bookcase while it was standing it proved to be quite challenging. The idea of using foam board is genius!!! I’m going to have to try it again!! Thanks for the tip!

    Saw you on Centsational Girl.

  19. I love this idea, but can’t swing the $44 for that awesome stencil. I’m making a trip to Michael’s today to see if I can find anything similar. I also LOVE your milk glass collection. I have several pieces from my grandmother that I adore.

  20. Rebecca B.No Gravatar says:

    I about hyperventilated when I saw the picture thinking you had actually painted your cabinet. *gasp* the permanence!! But ahhaaaaa…..foam board….you sneaky little genius. Yes, I *can* do this after all. Thanks for the tip

  21. Incredibly beautiful! I LOVE that color, so fresh and it really makes everything pop!

  22. I love it!! I’ve been wanting to do this design on my daughter’s end table in green & white, so I’m going to find this stencil. Thanks for the inspiration!

  23. Gorgeous!!! I won one of their stencils about 2 months ago, but I’ve been too scared to try it, but now I can’t wait to try it! That green is gorgeous! Fantastic job!

  24. this turned out gorgeous! I love the green and the stencil pattern-I wouldn’t have thought of stenciling foam board but I guess that does make it a lot less permanent and easier to work with. I’ve played with stenciling just a little bit-I’ve been really wanting to stencil a closet door and a ceiling!

  25. Absolutely love it!

  26. So pretty!! I shared it on my TT&J FB page :)


  27. I featured this on my blog last night. It looks awesome.

  28. Just saw your cabinet at Corner House – it looks absolutley amazing!

  29. I love everything about this! The color is amazing!!!!

  30. Freakin genius Batman! I love the foam board idea! And so easy to switch out with the seasons or on a whim… I’ve been toying with ideas for my hutch and had all but decided on painted wallpaper until I saw this…Whew! That was close!

  31. Awesome! How did you attach your foam board to the hutch?

  32. Your cabinet turned out just beautiful!! I am curious, though, about the foam board thickness. Did you have to cut the depth of your shelves down?

  33. Perfect!! I love that used foam board making it an interchangable piece.

    I have just started getting into stencils myself. My biggest project was stenciling curtains

    I love how easy they are to use.

  34. This is so clever! I just love the repeating pattern stencils, especially the geometric ones. I am working on stenciling my studio right now with a stencil from cutting edge designs (birch tree forest) and its taking forever! And you’re totally right, the drying time makes it take even longer!

    Nikki Kelly @ the ambitious procrastinator

  35. You are so smart to use foam core! Brilliant. PLEASE share what color green that is! I must buy it!!!