It’s almost Valentine’s Day, but today I wanted to share a quick decor project that’s generic enough to leave up during the rest of the year if you’d like. Using the Silhouette Stencil Material with some embossing paste and ready-made canvases from the craft store, I made this set of three textured ombré hearts in just a few hours (and most of that was drying time!).
Start by resizing your design (I chose this beautiful butterfly heart) to the appropriate size for your canvas (mine is 8″ x 8″) and then cut it from the Silhouette Stencil Material using the settings in the Studio software. You may need to set your machine to perform a double cut if your blade is on the older side. Press your stencil onto your canvas firmly. My canvases came primed with a coat of gesso already and I found the surface a bit chalky, which made adhering the stencil difficult. If you’re having trouble adhering your stencil to a ready-made canvas, a fresh coat of your own gesso or some white acrylic paint should provide a better surface to stick it to.
Spread embossing paste all over your stencil (the scraper tool works great for this!) and then remove the stencil. The thickness and evenness of your coat now will determine how dimensional and textured your hearts appear later. Never heard of or don’t have any embossing paste? You can always substitute spackling paste from the home improvement store…results will vary depending on the type you use however. Rinse the leftover paste from your stencil immediately so that you can reuse it later.
I let my embossing paste dry for about an hour and then placed my stencil back on top of my design to add the color. Here I am using an airbrush system to create a smooth gradient, but you can just as easily sponge paint or ink on top of the raised surface to create the same effect. You can also color your paste before you apply it, but I was having trouble achieving smooth transitions that way, so I settled on this method instead.
Your final canvas will look like this. I actually tried at first to spread my paste so that it was relatively smooth, but turned out loving the look of all of the ridges and bubbles later. If I was going to do this again, I might slap that paste on until it looked like a big old mess…because you’d still get the same beautiful butterfly pattern when you removed the stencil!
I chose the bright greens, blues, and pinks because it reminded me of those candy conversation hearts and I thought I could get away with leaving these up all year round. After Valentine’s Day, I might break my set up and give a few out as gifts though. Since my stencil is reusable, I can always make more. Have you tried the stencil material yet?
ETA: I’ve received several questions regarding the airbrush system I used for this project. It is the one marketed by Copic and can be found here…it is expensive, but works beautifully.