Let’s face it, just about everyone is jumping on the tile bandwagon these days. There are so many fun options to help personalize your space out there, and patterns are in!
The problem? They’re not cheap! Not to mention demo of your current flooring and installation of your new tile can be quite the process.
So how can you get that look for less? I’m so glad you asked…
It’s amazing what paint can do these days. You already know it can help transform walls and spaces, and in just a few short hours, you have a brand new look and feel.
But have you ever thought about painting your floors?
Sound crazy? Bear with me…
MY STENCILING JOURNEY
We bought our starter home knowing it needed some love but not having too much of a disposable income to really do any renovations.
Our three bathrooms and our laundry room were tiled with this laminate, faux stone, tan tile that really added a sense of ‘blah’ to the space. Honestly, it always looked dirty to me too, which didn’t help.
I never liked the flooring, and I felt like it set the tone for the whole room. No matter how we painted the walls, it still seemed a bit drab.
That’s when I began researching another trend happening these days…
STENCILING YOUR TILE FLOORS
What if a company made a stencil that matched all those pretty, expensive floor tiles out there? One that you could use in your own home to paint your tile floors?
Ask and you shall receive.
I stumbled upon what is now my very favorite stencil shop, Cutting Edge Stencils. I began exploring all they had to offer, and low and behold, they had an entire section on their website devoted to wall stencils and floors stencils including tile stencils!
I chose my first stencil, and once I got started, I knew I wasn’t going to stop until all that drab tile was out of my home for good!
If you’re looking to jump into your own stenciling project, I have a whole blog post on how to stencil your tile floors here, so make sure you check it out for all the details!
Instead of digging into the nitty-gritty today, I’m going to answer my top 5 most frequently asked questions when it comes to stenciling floors and how I’ve set myself up for success throughout the process!
FLOOR TILE STENCILING: 5 FAQs ANSWERED SO YOU CAN START YOUR NEXT DIY PROJECT TODAY
FAQ 1: WHERE DO YOU BUY YOUR STENCILS AND DOES IT MATTER WHO YOU BUY FROM?
I am loyal to Cutting Edge Stencils for all my stenciling needs for a handful of reasons. Reason number one being that they know what they’re doing!
Not only do they have a variety of beautiful designs to choose from, but they have really honed in the process. They make it simple to line up your stencils so your projects look perfect every time, their stencils are thin but durable (which is so important when it comes to painting), and they tell you everything you need to know if you’re a beginner.
Their website is dedicated to your success, and they even supply stenciling starter kits with just what you need to get started.
And their team and customer service can’t be beat!
I have done 5 stenciling projects in my home so far, and I have turned to Cutting Edge Stencils every time to help me create exactly what I wanted!
FAQ 2: WHAT STENCIL PATTERNS HAVE YOU USED AND WHERE CAN I FIND THEM?
Meanwhile back at Cutting Edge Stencils…
This is almost a continuation of FAQ 1, but let’s dig into a little more detail, shall we?
I get asked all the time what my stencils are called and where they can be found, so I’ll provide exactly what I’ve used and where so you can find them yourself!
MASTER BATHROOM: Herringbone Brick Allover Stencil
LAUNDRY ROOM & GUEST BATH: Augusta Tile Stencil
MAIN BATHROOM: Felicity Tile Stencil
I do highly recommend purchasing two stencils for your project so you have the ability to cut or manipulate one for edges and corners!
FAQ 3: WHAT KIND OF PAINT CAN YOU USE ON YOUR FLOORS?
You have options here, but from what I’ve read and seen, most people use chalk paint or a water-based latex paint.
I prefer chalk paint whenever possible because it’s thicker and adheres to more surfaces so there’s less room for error! For every floor I’ve painted aside from the gray bathroom floor, I’ve used this white chalk paint.
For the stencil, I’ve used a few different options, but always stuck within the categories of chalk paint or latex paint! Because you’re adding such a thin layer of paint, I’ve found that both work pretty well for me.
FAQ 4: HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE THE PAINT DOESN’T BLEED?
This is a question I get all the time! The key is to use as little paint as possible when you’re stenciling. I’ve used both mini paint rollers and stencil brushes, and the same holds true for each!
I barely dip the brushes in paint, roll or blot off all the excess paint, and very gently roll or dab the paint on the floor. The less paint you have and the lighter the layer, the better!
If you’re unsure to start, use a posted board to practice first. This will help give you a sense of how much paint you should be using!
FAQ 5: HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE IT HOLDS UP, ESPECIALLY IN ROOMS LIKE THE BATHROOM OR LAUNDRY ROOM?
My answer? So. Much. Sealant. You want to seal your floors like nobody’s business to ensure your floors hold up to wear and tear as well as water. This might be the most important step in my opinion.
I swear by this clear gloss sealant and have used it on 3 out of 4 of my floors. I add 3-4 thick coats of this sealant with a brush so it’s a nice thick, even layer. Then, I let each coat dry a good 12-18 hours before adding another coat.
This is really where patience pays off! The longer you wait, the more protection you give your floors in the long run.
You also want to make sure you go around all the edges, corners, etc. really well so they’re nice and sealed. You don’t want any water seeping into your water-based paint!
Finally, you want to wait 24-48 hours after applying your last coat of sealant before moving anything heavy onto the floors so it has ample time to set.
I used this on my laundry room floors and moved my washer, dryer, folding table, and hampers in about 24 hours later, and they haven’t made a scratch on the floors!
I did, however, choose a different poly coat for one of my bathroom floors, and it began chipping right away. I repaired the chips and coated with this sealant and haven’t had any issues since!
TO WRAP IT UP
My final piece of advice (and bonus FAQ)? Don’t let the fear of messing up keep you from transforming your floors! Honestly, you probably will mess up a little bit. That’s okay!
I definitely messed up when I tried out my first floor, but in the grand scheme of the floor, you can’t even tell.
Not to mention, you’re using water-based paint, so you can always wipe it up and start over!
And in a worst case scenario, you can always paint over it all and start over.
So my biggest piece of advice is to simple give it a try! Know you’re going to need to use patience and understand there’s a lot of waiting on the paint to dry, but in the end, you’ll be able to step back and look at your floors and say, “I did that!”
And that’s the best feeling of all!
If you want a step by step on how to stencil your floors, make sure you head here! And let me know if you’ll give floor stenciling a try in the comments below!
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