How to Use the Stencils

Step 1:

Hold your stencil in place. Many people use masking tape or painters tape to hold the stencil in place. You may also wish to consider using a repositionable stencil adhesive. This is a light adhesive spray that you can apply to the back of your stencil. The adhesive will hold the entire back of the stencil to your surface instead of only the areas that are taped. The adhesive allows you to achieve outstanding results for creating a crisp stencil job. The adhesive will gradually wear off your stencil as you use it and, at this point, you need to spray the back of the stencil with adhesive again. The adhesive will not leave any residue or damage your stenciling surface. You can remove the adhesive with acetone or any product that removes adhesive. It is available at almost every craft supply or art supply store.

Step 2:

Applying paint to a stencil is easy. If you are decorating or sign making you may wish to consider using a dry stencil paint and a brush. These items are available at all craft supply stores and they give the user full control over creating a crisp stenciled finished product. There are many great paints available for decorative stenciling and we recommend you become familiar with these products by visiting a local craft supply store.

If you are using your stencils for a more industrial purpose, there are 3 common methods available:
Spray - Brush - Roll

  • SPRAY: Spraying paint on a stencil can be very quick but you must use control. An airbrush or a lower powered paint sprayer are ideal because you can easily control the flow of paint and pressure. Using spray paint may be your choice because of its availability. If you decide to use spray paint, hold the spray paint can at least 10" from the stencil. Use a swift back and forth motion and always keep the spray can moving. You can go over areas that are faded until they are as filled as you would like them to be. Do not hold the can too close or stop the can in one place as this will allow the pressure of the paint to possibly run underneath the stencil.

  • BRUSH: Brushing paint on a stencil takes a bit more time but this allows you to have better control over paint. Any type of solid or liquid paint will work with our stencils. The key to achieving the best results using a brush and liquid paint is to make sure that there is not too much paint on your brush. Use only a little paint and work it into the tip of the brush before you paint through the stencil.

  • ROLL: Several paint and ink rollers are available for stenciling non-shiny surfaces. These are outstanding! If you plan to make industrial stenciling a frequent occurrence, you may wish to invest in an ink roller kit. If you plan to use paint instead of ink you can use a paint roller or a trim roller with a paint (roller) tray. These rollers are inexpensive and available everywhere. Most applications will require a trim roller, which is about 4" long, rather than a standard paint roller. To achieve the best results use minimal paint and really work the paint into the roller before touching the stencil with the roller.

Any questions please call us at 1.800.969.6699 or email us at

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NATIONAL STENCIL - The Stenciling Experts
National Stencil - 3231 W. MacArthur Blvd. - Santa Ana, California 92704 (USA)
Int. Tel. (011) 714-979-1405 - Toll free - 800-969-6699 Int. Fax (011) 714-979-1407 - Toll free Fax 888-979-4488