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How To Use A Wall Stencil To Create Budget Faux Wallpaper

Want to save money on expensive wallpaper? Here is a way to use a wall stencil to create budget-friendly faux wallpaper. Take a look at how easy it is to paint the design with a wall stencil.

We’ve been remodeling our tiny beach cottage for the past year, and this past weekend, we decided to tackle the bathroom.

I can’t wait for you to see the results.

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Wallpaper Inspiration

Since we began the project, I’ve been drooling over some of the wallpaper choices I’ve seen. I started saving images of the wallpaper patterns that would work in the space.

One of my favorites was the wallpaper Heather Krout used when she remodeled her bathroom.

I saved the link and continued to come back to this one repeatedly. Isn’t it stunning?

Heather's Bathroom Remodel with blue and white wall paper and vertical tongue and groove paneling.

The Challenge

The biggest challenge was the faux textured wall in the bathroom.

This was a project from 17 years ago when I was faux-finishing everything in sight.

Before of bathroom remodel.  Textured wall faux finish which is out of date.

The textured wall would need to be sanded for the wallpaper to adhere. What a mess that would be!

The second challenge was the cost of the wallpaper. Although I only needed a small amount, the price, $126.00 per roll, was outside my budget.

So far, we have worked on this remodel with a shoestring budget, and although the amount of wallpaper needed was minimal, it wasn’t budget-friendly.

Can You Use a Wall Stencil To Create Faux Wallpaper?

The answer is yes and maybe!

It will undoubtedly depend on the wallpaper design you plan to duplicate.

The more complicated the design, the harder it will be to create a wall stencil for painting.

I liked the simple design, and I felt confident I could stencil my walls and save money.

Bathroom Walls after painting with Balboa Mist by Benjamin Moore for tiny bathroom faux wallpaper technique.
Bathroom Walls after painting with Balboa Mist by Benjamin Moore

How To Create a Wall Stencil for Painting?

First, I had this bright idea to make my stencil by drawing a pattern similar to the wallpaper on stencil material.

I used a Sharpie pen to draw my design and was somewhat happy with the results.

Then reality set in. It was time to cut the stencil.

The stencil could have been cut with my silhouette cameo, but I’m not good at creating my designs and didn’t want to take the time to learn a new skill.

I thought I could do it by hand. However, I would be wrong.

Handcut stencil for faux wall paper idea.  Tiny bathroom remodel ideas.

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I was able to cut the stencil with an exacto knife, but it wasn’t pretty.

The Solution

I was beginning to feel discouraged but then remembered that you can buy pre-cut stencils, and I had several packed away from my interior design faux finishing days.

After looking through all my old stencils, I found two that I thought might work.

They were not exactly like this gorgeous wallpaper, but I felt I could get a similar result.

Stencil options for wall stencil with paint for faux wallpaper ideas.  Tiny Beach Cottage Remodel.

Supplies For Wall Stencil Project

For this project, I began by painting the wall with Benjamin Moore Balboa Mist. This is the color of the living area in the beach cottage.

Then I chose three colors of blue for the wall stencil painting.

Supplies for Wall Stencil for painting a faux wallpaper idea.  Stencil brushes and craft paint.

How Do You Stencil A Textured Wall?

The good news is that adding a wall stencil for painting to a textured wall is easy. The wall texture will add to the authentic wallpaper appearance.

Begin by taping the stencil to the wall at a starting point. Be sure the stencil is level by using a laser level to align.

Because my space was limited, I began on the most visible spot of the wall.

Wall Stencil for faux wallpaper ideas. Tape stencil to painted wall for Tiny House Bathroom Remodel

How Do You Paint A Wall Like Wallpaper?

You can begin by adding the paint colors to a paper plate or pallet.

Here are the three paint colors I used.

Add three colors of blue paint to paper plate for Wall Stencil painting ideas.
Don’t you love my paint pallet?

Once the stencil is secured to the wall, begin painting it to resemble the inspiration wallpaper.

Add the lightest paint color to a stencil brush and remove any excess paint by blotting on a paper towel.

Dab the flat end of the brush over the open cuts in the stencil, pressing straight onto the wall. Do not brush the paint side to side.

The coverage should be random for this design. You want to avoid solid coverage.

The brush can be partially dry for the application. If you need heavier coverage, you can always add more paint.

Remember to build the coverage slowly to avoid adding more paint than needed.

Next, randomly dab the medium Cloudy Day paint color onto the wall. Add less coverage than you did with the lighter color.

Finally, add just a tiny amount of the Napoleonic Blue chalk paint to a smaller brush and lightly apply it to the stencil. Do not completely cover any of the openings with a darker color.

You can see how the three colors are applied randomly to achieve the desired effect below. Some areas barely show any paint, and other areas appear darker.

See the combination of 3 colors of blue paint on the wall stencil for beach cottage bathroom makeover.

Continue By Moving The Stencil

The paint is applied with an almost dry brush technique so you can quickly move the stencil to the next spot.

Align the stencil next to the first application and continue with the same application technique as above until the wall is covered.

Continue to move the stencil placement to cover the entire wall for a faux wallpaper.

The Finished Faux Wallpaper

Finally, the wall is covered with the wall stencil paint technique, and here is a close-up of the wall.

Faux wallpaper is achieved with wall stencil technique in tiny bathroom remodel.

The area is so much brighter, and I love the new look. I can’t wait to finish this project.

Do You Save Money With Faux Wallpaper Technique?

With a simple design such as this, absolutely.

This wall space is small and only took me 2 hours to complete.

I already had the base paint left over from the living room, and I also had the stencil.

In addition, the dark color of chalk paint was left over from the DIY Flour Sack Painted Napkins I made last year.

Therefore, I only need two paint colors, each costing less than $3.00. That’s a $123.00 savings.

However, if you need to purchase a stencil and more paint, your cost will be approximately $30.00 – $35.00 for this faux wallpaper project.

Entire wall is stenciled with a faux wallpaper finish in beach cottage bathroom remodel.

Other Tiny House Remodeling Projects

In case you missed seeing these projects, here is a list for your convenience.

Tiny House Beach Cottage Remodel with open kitchen cabinets and apron front sink.  Farmhouse style coastal cottage.

You can see a sneak peek of the new rattan-wrapped mirror.

Budget-Friendly Wall Stencil Idea for Beach Cottage Bathroom Remodel saved money and looks great.

Bathroom Remodel for Under $500

Please look at the money-saving details for this bathroom renovation for less than $500.

I hope this idea will help you with remodeling projects around your home.


Pin It To Remember It

Did you find some great ideas you’d like to save for future reference? Hover over the images you’d like to save and pin to your favorite Pinterest Boards when you see the PIN button.

Faux High-end wallpaper using a stencil.
Budget-Friendly Wall Stencil Idea for Beach Cottage Bathroom Remodel saved money and looks great.
How To Save Money on Expensive Wall Paper with a Wall Stencil for Painting technique - faux wallpaper.

Cheryl Atkinson

Sunday 11th of June 2023

i love this!


Tuesday 13th of June 2023

Cheryl, I am so glad you like this post. It sure save me a lot of money..

FARMHOUSE FRIDAY 290 - County Road 407

Friday 10th of March 2023

[…] paper is so trendy right now and Rachel at The Ponds Farmhouse shares exactly how you can get this budget friendly look too.  Don’t miss it or pin it […]


Saturday 11th of March 2023

Thanks for sharing.


Thursday 9th of March 2023

Popping back in to say I'm featuring this tomorrow on Farmhouse Friday. It's absolutely gorgeous! Pinned again!


Thursday 9th of March 2023

Cindy, I appreciate you so much. Thank you.

Mary from Life at Bella Terra

Sunday 5th of March 2023

Rachel, I love the transformation!Just are so talented.


Sunday 5th of March 2023

Mary, I appreciate your encouragement.

Kim | Shiplap and Shells

Friday 3rd of March 2023

I love this idea, Rachel! It looks amazing and I now want to try it on my office wall! Thanks for sharing.


Saturday 4th of March 2023

Kim I'm so glad you found this helpful