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Whether it’s your first or fiftieth time, find out more about how to stop your stencil bleeding and get a crisp edge every time.

How should I prepare my surface prior to stencilling?

Whilst you can stencil almost any surface, the smoother your surface the crisper the finish. On textured surfaces such as wood, it is important to make sure the application surface is as smooth as possible. We recommend preparing the surface with a light sandpaper.  Textured surfaces can be harder to stencil and can often result in a slight bleed or paint getting under the stencil. You want your surface to be as smooth as possible to achieve the best results.

How do I secure my stencil to the wall?

One of the most common mistakes people make when using a stencil is not correctly securing the stencil to the wall. This is best done using a combination of masking tape to take the stencil weight together with a light application of repositioning spray glue on the back of the stencil, we recommend 3M Repositioning Spray Mount. This light application allows the stencil to be repositioned several times without leaving any residue. The stencil will stay in place whilst you’re painting, and will result in a crisp edge with no bleeding.

What’s the best way to apply my stencil without bleeding?

It’s important to make sure you’re using the best tools to apply your stencil. You can use aerosol, chalk-spray or paint and apply with a roller, brush or sponge. It’s always best to bear in mind the size and complexity of the design when choosing a painting medium so you can use the appropriate method for stencil application. 

Whichever painting method you chose, the most important thing is to ensure, that you don’t apply too much paint, several thin layers of paint I better than one thick coat. This is the most common cause for stencils bleeding. It is best to use small amounts of paint and build up the opacity of the stencil so you end up with a smooth, crisp edge every time.

Video guide

We put together a short video on how to prevent paint getting under my stencil or bleeding to guide you through the best method of applying a stencil that will result in a smooth, crisp edge every time.

How to order

We make stencils that come in a variety of sizes, thickness of material and can be made to any quantity. We understand that every project is different, so you can get in touch with us today at [email protected] or call us on 0161 989 0847 to speak to our team of laser cutting experts.

For more information and videos on stencilling different surfaces and their purpose, visit our How To page.