Jan 16, 2014

diy stenciled grasscloth wallpaper

i have been coveting the phillip jeffries chain link printed grasscloth from the voyage collection for...like, ever. 

i wanted to use it somewhere in my house, but came across a few issues:
1. this stuff is EXPEN$IVE! dang.
2. there is a 2 roll minimum, which is way more than i would need for my mini space.

SO---i decided to make my own knock-off phillip jeffries printed grasscloth.

i am thrilled with the way this project turned out---and you will be happy to know that it is a totally easy, do-able diy project. 
no lie.

remember what i started with?

and here is the preliminary design plan:
as you might remember, i was trying to decide what to do with this little vestibule which leads to the master suite and the powder room. i so appreciate all of the votes on which wallpaper i should choose! i decided to opt for the stenciled grasscloth to save some money, since i already had a grasscloth remnant but i was VERY afraid that i was going to ruin it. honestly, i should not have worried so much. with a few basic pointers, it is an easy project to duplicate.


want to tackle a similar project yourself?
here is what you will need:

(spray mount is also helpful for this project! it helps to keep the stencil in place.)

some more info:
* i scored my phillip jeffries grasscloth remnant on ebay for about $60, including shipping, but you could probably find some for less.
* the martha stewart metallic paint in "golden pearl" was the prefect opacity and color for this project! i like how it glimmers just a bit and has a slightly uneven look, plus it was a little more forgiving than a more "solid" color.
*i used the "modern chain link stencil" from stencil boss. 

how i did it:
first, i figured out how much paper i needed for the single wall that i was going to stencil. (i opted to only stencil one wall of my little space. the other walls each had a door or opening in them, and i figured it wasn't worth the hassle of having the pattern interrupted. plus, it was much easier to install!) i measured, and added 1/4" to each side and 3" to the length just to make sure i had enough. i used scissors to cut the paper. 

once i had the paper cut to size, i laid it down and taped the pieces together from the underside to keep them from shifting. (i kept the factory edges together to make sure my seam was straight and crisp--so, the pieces that i cut with the scissors are on the very outside.)

*i also placed a plastic drop cloth underneath everything to keep paint off my floors.

 i sprayed the back of my stencil with spray adhesive, and centered it on the grasscloth, making sure it was even on both sides. i thought that stenciling the grasscloth on the floor was MUCH easier than doing it on the wall, but if your grasscloth is already up, or you would rather hang it first, and then stencil, that would work too. (it is just hard to get in the corners and top/bottom without seriously cutting the stencil. you can read about my other experience with all over stencils here.)

 i dipped a small foam roller into my paint, and then rolled it on a cloth rag. this is a very important step! it helps to evenly distribute the paint and removes any excess which can get under your stencil and ruin the pattern.

using moderate pressure, i rolled over the top of the stencil. since grasscloth is an uneven and rather porous surface, it absorbs quite a bit of paint and took several passes to get an even distribution of paint.

 keep moving the stencil, being careful to keep it lined up with the previously stenciled area.
i found that by the time i was done with each section, the stencil was dry enough to move on to the next section, but i kept some paper under it (the paper lining that came with the stencil) under it until i was certain i had it in the correct place.

 the only time i that i thought the stencil started to look sloppy was when i was pushing too hard.
(see the area on the middle bottom?) two light coats is better than one heavy one!

the finished product, ready to hang. 
* i will be posting about my experiences with actually hanging the grasscloth soon.

here is the AFTER again!

i used spray mount, duct tape and an exacto blade to cover the switch plate. a super easy project---very similar to wrapping a present!

some matching paint (dabbed on with a small brush) helps to camouflage the screws.

i used some spray primer and the same matching paint to disguise the door bell chime.

WELL worth the time and effort! it blends in pretty well and lets the mirror and the wallpaper be the stars of this teeny space.

what do you think??

is this something that you would attempt in your own home?

do you think i made the right decision to just stencil one wall, or would you go ahead and stencil all of them?


  1. Just fabulous! Love that you did a DIY to create a designer look and that you hung the grasscloth yourself. Go girl, can't wait to hear about that too!

    1. thanks cathy! i did a little prep by watching some you tube videos (yay for you tube!), but once i got rolling, it was super easy!

  2. Wow, this looks gorgeous. Love it and such an amazing transformation. Hugs, Marty

  3. Oh my goodness this looks SO amazing! I think you will be starting a whole new DIY trend here. Love!

  4. That looks awesome! I think doing just the 1 wall is plenty in such a small space. You really did a great job!

  5. Wow ..impressive..looks wonderful.
    May I ask where you found that narrow console. I have a narrow spot in my entryway - only have room for 30 inches across and needs to be small depth like yours…just having problem finding anything that works. Everytime I find something it a few inches to wide.
    Happy New Year to you and your family! Love your blog...

    1. it is from crate and barrel, but is no longer available...BUT room and board has one called the "slim console" that is almost the same.

  6. wow! so impressed. love the subtle layers. such a pretty spot to stop in your house.

  7. You did an awesome job. I think one wall is plenty. Also brilliant to stencil before hanging to avoid corner issues. You are one of my favorite bloggers i really love what you do. I was so excited to see the project for your new home.

  8. I was totally a naysayer when you were thinking about doing this, but I was completely wrong: it looks GREAT! nice job!

    1. well thanks!! i am glad i turned you into a believer! :)

  9. Looks amazing!

    Um, side note, when I went to comment, there was some porno cartoon advertisement on the bottom of your page. Just so you know.

    1. um. not good. looking into that right now. (ick.)

  10. I was one that voted for the Phillip Jeffries wallpaper (I even thought it was beautiful enough to be worth the splurge for the small space), but I'm so impressed with your recreation. I can't believe you were able to replicate it on such a small budget! It is gorgeous, and it brings the perfect little splash of modern/classic glamour to this pretty space. I bet you love going to your bedroom now!

  11. This looks so great! I'm not usually a huge fan of grass cloth but with the pattern it looks amazing!!! And I just LOVE the black ceiling! How chic!

  12. I'll just go ahead and take credit for helping convince you to choose this one... ;) It turned out so well! I'm glad you tackled this project. I feel like that's something I could do too.

    If that were my space, I think I'd take the pattern all around. I assumed the light just wasn't picking up the sheen of the pattern above the door, but then you mentioned that it was just on one wall, and I realized my mistake.

    1. yes---after my "experience" with using an allover stencil in my closet, i was having heart palpitations trying to wrap my head around getting a neat, crisp look with the stencil with the grasscloth was on the wall. i MIGHT stencil the one wall that you see when you walk into the space, but honestly, the other walls are so small and are seldom seen. i don't think i will ever stencil those.

  13. Oh I have been thinking about doing this one day! So happy you tried it first and it turned out. It looks fabulous and so chic, great job Autumn!