How to Stencil a Pattern on a Floor
Homemade stencil + primer + paint = brand-new floor
When Lori Dunbar pulled up her sunroom carpet, then the four more layers of flooring and underlayments beneath it, she was surprised to uncover not the hard maple found elsewhere in the house but battered pine. "And it was in really rough shape," she says. "So I thought, This is a chance to do something creative." A graphic designer by trade, Lori used Adobe Illustrator software to tweak a blossom design she found online, making it larger and more stylized. This would be her template for a hand-cut foam-core stencil, with dots between the petals to serve not only as a flourish but also as a guide for lining up the stencil as she moved it across the floor. After a pro sanded the floor, Lori put down a coat of primer, followed by three coats of porch-and-floor paint in glossy egg-yolk yellow. Starting in the middle of the room, she used a small paintbrush and white paint to fill in the pattern, using just one coat for an aged look. Two coats of polyurethane provided added scuff protection. "The motif is beautiful on its own," says Lori. "And the color is so cheerful. No wonder everyone loves this room."
Download the template for Lori's floor transformation.
Sand and Prime
Floorboards must be sanded and thoroughly vacuumed to create a smooth, clean surface for painting; consider hiring a pro. Wipe the floor with a microfiber cloth to remove all dust, and put down a coat of primer, using a long-handled roller. Follow the grain. Cut in along the baseboards with a paintbrush.