Tutorial: Painted Vintage Wallpaper

This tutorial is for creating a wallpaper look on your walls or anywhere you like. I decided to make a tutorial about how I'm painting my walls in case any of you guys are interested or even as crazy as me to take on this time consuming task.

1. The first thing you need to do is have your design, either look for it on the internet or draw it. In my case, I searched for it on the internet. There are many intricate designs available, so if you look for it online make sure the image is good quality so you can see the little designs clearly. Here is the one I chose:

2. Now that you have the image of your design, print it. Make sure to print it big enough so you can easily cut the little designs. But also take in account how big you want your stencil.
3. When you cut of the excess paper, make sure to leave a square around the design. We are going to use that as a guide when stenciling. I left 1cm on the top and bottom, and 1.3cm on each side.

4. After you have cut it, you should be left with a 11.4cm x 11.6cm square stencil.

5. Now take an exact-o-knife or a very thin scissor and cut out the design. Now decide if you want a stamp stencil or a tracing stencil. 
6. Constructing your stencil:
  • For the stamp stencil: After you have your pieces cut, take a foamy sheet and trace the designs. Cut them. Take a thick piece of cardboard or a thin piece of wood (11.6cm x 11.4cm) and using your stencil square (now holey) trace the designs with a pencil. You need to do this as a guide to glue the foamy pieces. Now glue the foamy pieces on top of the pencil lines. Make sure to use a very good glue (I used Elmer's Contact Cement) Let dry. F.Y.I. You need to trace and glue them upside down so when you stamp it, it comes out straight. 
  • For the tracing stencil: Print the design on a cardboard paper and cut out the pieces. Now you have a holey stencil. To protect the stencil I wrapped it in contact paper and cut the the contact paper out of the holes. There you have it.

7. Using your stencils: 
  • Stamp Stencil: Cover the foamy part with paint and stamp away. Make sure not to put the coat of paint too thin or too thick. If it's too thin the design won't come out complete and the paint will dry before you stamp it. If you put it on too thick when you press it, the paint will spread everywhere and you will have a blotch design rather than a clean look.
  • Tracing Stencils: Place it on the surface you will paint and with a pencil (I don't recommend using a pen because if your using a light color paint the pen will show through) trace each design. Take off the stencil and with a thin paintbrush paint each design, one by one. This is the most time consuming of the stencils. I know that you can also paint it with the stencil on, but I don't highly recommend it if you have cement walls, because the walls are not smooth enough and the paint may seep under the stencil. If you have very smooth walls I think it should be fine, just don't pile too much paint on it, or otherwise you'll get a 3D effect.
8. Making the wallpaper: I started with the top right corner of my wall. The first and second design are the most crucial, because they will serve as your guide. You can either start with a complete design or a half-design as I did. (To make the corners, top and bottoms: when printing your design, print more than one. Measure it as explained in the steps above; the only difference is that you cut it in half.) Align your stencil with your ceiling and bring it as near as you can to your opposite wall corner. As soon as your sure the stencil it's in its right position, stamp or draw it. You want to make your design below the first, leave a thumb-sized space between the designs and stamp or draw your second design, making also sure that is as close as possible to the opposite wall corner.

9. Now that you have at least the two crucial designs you are going to make your third design. Align the left edges of your stencil with the right side dots of both your first and second designs. and draw your third design. This is the reason why you need the stencil to be square. In some cases the distance between each design will be a little more spaced out and the edges of your stencil won't fully be align with the dots, if this happens just try to place the stencil in the middle of the two dots. 

10. And that's it, just keep using your stencil edges and the outer dots as a guide. When you finish you will have a beautiful wallpaper design on your wall.

At first, I was using the tracing stencil, but it just took to much time, so now I switch to the stamp stencil. The only difference between the both is that the tracing stencil makes a more clean and beautiful design, whereas the stamp stencil, they don't come out as beautiful and complete as the other one.

If you have any questions, write them on the comment box and I'll help you as much as I can. If you take on the challenge send me a picture of how it turned out.

Update: I still haven't finish painting my entire room. I have like half a wall done. Hope I'll be able to finish it faster with the stamp method.


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