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drab to fab

From Habitat magazine - issue 22

Some of us just paint our walls. Greer Clayton uses them as over-sized canvases for her increasingly intricate stencilled and free-hand artworks.

Or she takes to a table with a herringbone pattern and a coat of whitewash, or adds polka dots to a child's desk or gives some plant pots a textured ombre effect.

Greer Clayton

If it can be turned from plain to fabulous, Greer will be there. In between times, she paints canvases and exhibits at various city galleries. Says Greer: "I have always loved working with paint and colour, and discovering the unique looks you can achieve."

With a Bachelor of Fine Arts, she lived and worked in London and Sydney before returning home with her husband and two children. Her own Auckland home is used as an ever-changing canvas for her work. Lately, she has turned her talents to her sister's home, completing the stunning wall above.

Green bedside table
Walls as a canvas
Bedside table: A bedside table in Resene Spritzer with a stencil in Resene Alabaster.  Walls: This amazing woodgrain effect is one of Greer’s latest creations and uses backgrounds, from bottom, of Resene Matchstick, Resene Foundry, and Resene Triple Black White with stencil overlays in Resene Gold Dust, Resene Proton and Resene Alabaster.

Using a cushion as inspiration, she started with irregular width stripes arranged symmetrically on the Resene Alabaster wall, using Resene Sakura, Resene Half Taupe Grey, Resene Double Pavlova and Resene Masala, overlaid with drifting arrows and herringbone patterns in metallic Resene Gold Dust and Resene Deep Space.

Says Greer: "I love working with texture and the varying gloss levels you can have with paint, for example using a flat finish on top of a high sheen or metallic paint. I'm also enjoying the trend for geometrics."

With her training in colour matching and mixing paints, Greer often manipulates the paints to get the desired colour – "I gravitate towards more muted tones."

She may create a simple pattern with masking tape, use off-the-shelf stencils, or seek out custom-made stencils. Greer has found herself in demand for private commissions as well as for magazine photo shoots. She stencilled a cabinet for the last issue of Habitat and features in a stencilling how-to video on For more of Greer's work, see


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