Stenciling Barstools

This week's DIY: Don't Injure Yourself project was a success.

Each week I scour craft and home improvement websites for a project to test run and write about. For weeks I’ve been hanging on to this Martha Stewart stenciled stool link, waiting on someone to donate barstools to. For once, I can say that this project really was cheaper than just buying stools and they look exactly like I wanted.

One thing about barstools is that they run $75 and up, and if you don’t want something black, you’re out of luck. That’s what prompted me to make these.

The cost:

$16 for two barstools at the

$6 in paint

$6 in glaze

$4 stencil

The stools were in great condition, but had paint marks where their last owner had tried to paint them. They also had a lot of black marks. I thought I could clean them off, but was unsuccessful even when I used my arsenal of cleaning products.

The instructions called for quite a few materials for the stenciling—stencil brush, pouncer, spray adhesive, template—that you could live without. For $1 you can buy a pouncer—a round sponge on a stick—that will help your stencil a lot. Go ahead and buy that. I didn’t for this project, but went back for one when I tried to do other stuff around my home.

After three coats of paint, my stools were finally the color I wanted. Then I did the stencil and waited on it to dry.

OK, that’s a lie. I sort of waited on it to dry, sort of didn’t. There's that saying about waiting for paint to dry for a reason. It's boring and I have stuff to do. 

I thought they would be OK without the finish, but the feeling of the paint on wood made my skin crawl. It was like fingernails on a chalkboard every time I touched them. So, I used the satin finish glaze to make them touchable.

Total project time: four hours over two days

Total project cost: $32 for two stools

This was completely worth it. Now, I have the stools that go with my home instead of black ones that look better suited in an actual bar. 


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