Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Stenciled Floors {How To}

You have all overwhelmed me with your super kind comments on Tori's "big girl room" reveal.  Most of you were lovin' these floors and I received some questions about them so I decided I'd better set aside the t-shirt scarf I'm in the middle of making, set the timer on those cheesecakes in the oven, and put some "Tooty Ta" on for the kids to dance to while I post about this adorable floor! 

Disclaimer: I am in no way an expert.  Just a thrifty DIYer with a case of attention deficit disorder that drives my mom insane, who uses what I have on hand since I'm so spur-of-the-moment that I don't have time to run to town to buy supplies.  If I can do this, so can you!!  

First, remove carpet, padding, and staples  Make sure to remove ALL those pesky staples!  Make sure also to warn your kiddos that they will pierce their tender little footsies in multiple places should they decide to ignore the warnings of coming in to see why you're creating such a disaster.

My mom always does the easy stuff.  Like scrubbing the 150 year old grime off the wood plank flooring.  She said her rag smelled like smoke from a coal burner.  Not sure how she knows what that kind of smoke smells like, but she's got a lot of info up in that  there pretty little head.  She scrubbed, and scrubbed, and scrubbed.  While I pulled, and pulled, and pulled... on staples.  Somehow she didn't think that was very fair.
 Well why didn't you say so, before mom?  I gladly would have scrubbed those floors. :)

So did we sand, you ask?

No.  My friend Marie, who is an amazing fellow do-it-yourself-er, popped in on us and said that she sanded her floors before painting them and they must have been a soft pine wood or something and you could see every little sanding mark.  Good.  Wasn't going to bother with that anyway!  

I had some gray porch floor paint, a few off-white mistints and some other paint from cans that only had 1/2 an inch left in them.  It was quite gratifying to throw away at least twenty empty paint cans that night.  (We opened at least fifteen cans and emptied the non-dried out ones for the wall color, too.)
Using a regular nappy roller, I put the paint on the floor fairly thick.
The next morning, I touched up around the walls and a few places that it was thin, but it did not need a second coat. Phew!

I dug through my slightly disorganized stencil stash and narrowed it down to about three.  This was the first one I decided to test in the corner and I was instantly in love.  The spacing with this stencil was really easy to eye-ball and I never measured anything.  Just used the edge of the stencil as my marker and eye-balled across to make sure I was lined up and went one at a time with a foam roller.  It took hardly any paint and thankfully the room is fairly tiny and it took me about two hours to completely cover the floor.

Next came the Polycrylic. 
 I just realized I've been misspelling this word on my blog for two years.  Shoot.

While it was totally necessary as a protective finish, I'm a little bummed that it interacted a little with some of that century old varnish and yellowed in a few spots.  Pretty sure I saw Suzan from Simply Vintageous recently inform someone that it's called "tanning".  Suzy Q?  Am I right?? :)
Anyways, you can see what I mean in a few photos down.
minwax-polyacrylic.pngTo apply, I used a foam roller.  It dries fairly quickly, which is a big ole' bonus for us impatient people (and wives trying to finish before hubbies gets home from business trips in five hours!).  
It gave the floor a beautiful, finished look and also makes cleaning it much easier. Not that I would know much about that.

Now I might possibly be the only one who would even notice
 the yellowing or "tanning" but I want to be honest and "fo real" with you so here's a pic where you can see she ain't perfect:

 Although I was in a major time crunch to redo this room, I'm SO GLAD I took the time to stencil the floors!!!  It makes me sigh when I walk in, and I almost want to snuggle in her little bed and take a nap.  But just like cleaning, who has time to nap??

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-For the full room reveal with before and afters, click HERE.
-For the barnwood siding headboard tutorial, click HERE.

Linking at these awesome parties listed HERE and shown here:

Beyond The Picket FenceThe Shabby Nest
Funky Junk's Sat Nite Special
TDC Before and After


  1. It really looks lovely! I am dying to do this to some of my floors, you just made me want to do it even more!

  2. Great Tutorial Kammy - it's Tannin LMHO - not Tanning ( although that's kind of what it looks like!!! )
    It turned out so gorgeous - pat your self on the back - celebrate now -
    go TANNING tee hee!!!
    Just teasing "y'all" - love you - but you know that, right?

  3. That looks amazing!!!! So wish I had wood!

  4. So I told my husband that my daughters room was getting the nasty carpet ripped out and I wanted to paint and stencil the floors haha! he said it could't be done. OH I don't know where he gets his info from but I was all over your blog in a second!! haha, never say NEVER!!

  5. I'm so glad you posted the how-to's on this. When I took up the carpet from my living room several years ago...I found old wood under that didn't have a lick of finish on them. I've wanted to do this to that floor for all these years...now I know how to do it. As far as the yellowing...I think it just adds age and character...I love it!

  6. For all your self-deprecating slams, you really do know how to give an excellent tutorial. I see Tori's Floors appearing soon all over the country. The curtains are so frilly and feminine. What a lovely room.

  7. Wow this looks incredible. I love the idea of stenciling wood floors - what a unique and vintage look. I hope you can share this at my link party tomorrow. Have a nice day!


  8. Gorgeous. I lived in a rented house with wooden floors which I sanded and painted and I loved them... such a great way to dramatically change the look and feel of a room. Sadly we now have faux wood laminate flooring (which I hate). I'm sure there's probably a way to paint or stencil this (where there's a will, hey?) but I'm yet to research it. Great job here - looks fab and I think the yellow spots just add character! x

  9. Its brilliant!!! I have horrible carpet in our house which I want to remove. But the living room (being an extension) is mostly chipboard flooring under the carpet. I want to try painting that. Nothing to lose right? Only hours of work! LOL

  10. Kammy this came out GORGEOUS and I bet Tori just loves it... and what did Hubby think? Thanks for laying it out so well, it really helps to have a great tutorial! Love how you used up miscellaneous paints to do this...so creative! I adore the stenciling, that's what makes it so very special!

  11. The floor looks beautiful! We had the same issue with a little yellowing, but with an old house, we just call those imperfections "character". ;)
    Gorgeous work!

  12. It looks beautiful, yellowing and all! Your tutorial is great, too. I love that you work with whatever you have on hand whenever the idea hits you.

  13. So sweet & pretty! I'm featuring your gorgeous floor in this week's PoPP Spotlight. Thanks for linking up.

  14. Holy Cow! How lucky are you to have WOOD floors underneath your carpet! Totally jealous! Your floors turned out beautiful and great tutorial! Would love for you to share at the party! xo Bridgett


  15. Looks great - even with the tanning! Gives it more vintage charm, I say. Was this the subfloor? Or was it the actual flooring that was used? I ask this becuase I might want to do this in my daughter's room that we are re-doing. I know for sure that underneath the rug is a plywood subfloor. I don't know if that will look as good painted. So - if you could let me know what yours was...I would be grateful.

    I could also just have my floor guy put another layer of good plywood down (one that's painted already) and then I could do a stencil over it. That's a possibility too.

    Thanks for your inspiration and tutorial - you have a great eye...I would have had to plan the whole thing out...being the scaredy cat I am!




  16. Very cool! I just painted the floor of our mudroom, and i LOVE it. It is amazing how much light and character this brings to a room! You did a GREAT job!

  17. Hi Kammy - I love your floor it is ALMOST as cute as you! I've always wanted to do a stencil project like this, but I've never had the opportunity. It's fun to enjoy it vicariously through your blog.

    Warmly, Michelle
    PS - I often just say "poly" because I don't know how to spell ANY of those words - I doubt anyone even noticed! *Wink*

  18. Painting my subfloor in our playroom has been on my to do list for about 2 years now and the room is currently half ripped out carpet and half nasty old carpet just waiting. I love that you just did it right then and there! And I love that you didn't sand!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm kind of step skipper kind of diyer if I can even call myself a diyer, more of a makeshifter. ;) anyhow, I was thinking about skipping the sanding and I think you've convinced me. The floor looks fantastic!!! So does the room!


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