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Detail of floor stencil

Detail of floor stencil in Resene Elderflower (try Resene Umber White) and Resene Peace (try Resene Spanish Green). A4 drawdown paint swatches in (from top to bottom) Resene Smoothie (try Resene Sugar Loaf), Resene New Leaf (try Resene Clay Creek), Resene Elderflower and Resene Peace.


Stencils are a hugely flexible and diverse way of adding patterns to virtually anything. You can do entire walls, portions of furniture, pots, the edges of floors, frames or whatever takes your fancy.

The style of the stencil you use can range from modern to classic, small to large. You can make your own stencils or buy them online. Or you can use something slightly unexpected, like a cake stencil or a doily, as a stencil.

Use low-tack masking tape to keep your stencil in place. Use a sponge for stencilling, not a brush, and make sure you don’t overload it, or the paint will bleed underneath the edge of the stencil. Pour the paint into a shallow tray or dish and keep a rag or paper towel on hand to dab off excess paint. Carefully lift the stencil off and place it in the next position for painting.


A stencilled outdoor shower

A glass vase with a blue stencil design

A moroccan inspired stencil

A blue floor stencil

Shelf: Moroccan-inspired stencil in Resene Half Delta and Resene Quarter AlabasterFloor: Floor stencil in Resene Time After Time (try Resene Escapade) and Resene Wishing Well (try Resene Cobalt). Wall in Resene Dynamite.

Resene Elderflower

Resene Smoothie

Resene New Leaf

Resene Peace

Resene Time After Time

A painted terazzo surface in a bathroom

Paint effects - faux concrete wall

Bathroom: Back wall in Resene Jaguar with painted terrazzo in Resene Alpaca, Resene Urbane and Resene Tom Tom. Left wall in Resene Tangaroa, right wall in Resene High Tide and floor in Resene MercuryLiving area: This faux concrete wall uses a colourwash technique with Resene Half Raven, Resene Grey Chateau, Resene Double Concrete and Resene Half Concrete.

Paint effects - stone effect floor

Paint effects - weathered steel look on screen

Floor effect: The crazy tile effect on the floor is created using Resene Midwinter Mist with painted ‘grout’ in Resene Stack. Wall in Resene FX Paint Effects Medium coloured with Resene Half Alabaster over Resene Arrowroot. The skirting board is in Resene Half Alabaster.  Screen: This screen is painted in Resene FX Faux Rust Effect to give the look of weathered steel.

Woodgrain paint effects

Harlequin style floor

Woodgraining: This woodgrain effect is created by special effects artist Greer Clayton using bands of colour as the background, in Resene Matchstick (try Resene Sand), Resene Foundry and Resene Triple Black White, with woodgrain stencils on top in Resene Gold Dust metallic, Resene Proton metallic and Resene AlabasterDécoupage: This harlequin style floor is made from magazine clippings découpaged onto the painted floorboards in Resene Half Thorndon Cream and then sealed in three coats of Resene Aquaclear. The feature wall colour is Resene Niagara and the side walls and trims are Resene Alabaster.

Marbling paint effect on box

Marbling paint effect on candles

This box was created by painting a basecoat in Resene Splash, ragging Resene Chalky (try Resene Sandbar) over the top and softening the effect with a brush. The veins were then painted with a feather in Resene Brown Derby, Resene Warrior and Resene Alabaster.

Wall panelling in rosy coloured paint

Diagonal batten room in deep green

Rosy room: Wall and panelling of this rosy room are painted in Resene Cashmere, flooring in Resene Colorwood NaturalGreen room: This diagonal batten room is painted Resene Waiouru, with two battens painted in Resene Gravel and floor in Resene Quarter Spanish White.

A deep blue lounge

A light blue relaxing bedroom

Lounge: This blue lounge has a wall painted in Resene Twilight Zone (try Resene Dark Knight) and floor in Resene Colorwood Mid Greywash over Resene Colorwood CrowsheadBedroom: This relaxing bedroom has a wall in Resene Quarter Emerge (try Resene Mystic) and floor in Resene Quarter Concrete.

Resene Colorwood Mid Greywash

Resene Twilight Zone

Autumn leaf print design

Triangle stencil design

Artwork: This unbe-leafable artwork is painted in Resene Ayers Rock, Resene Lightning Yellow, Resene Poppy, Resene Persian Red and Resene KamikazeWall frieze: The bottom wall is Resene Bronze teamed with Resene Triple Wheatfield on the top of the wall and a triangle pattern using a simple sponge stencil.

Semi-circle print design

This semi-circle pattern is created using Resene Half White Pointer and Resene Triple Friar Greystone sponged onto a Resene Quarter Friar Greystone wall.

Top tip: To add some delicate shimmer to a painted wall or object, use Resene FX Pearl Shimmer. It’s great for kids’ rooms where a little moon dust or fairy dust is needed.

updated August 2021
Habitat plus - paint effects

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