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Learn How to Clean a Reusable Wall Stencil

Video Tutorial for How to Clean Your Cutting Edge Stencil Reusable Wall Stencil

Hey there happy stencilers! I bet you’re here because you’ve just completed your big stencil project and there’s an intense feeling of joy and accomplishment. Congratulations! You’ve done it (and don’t forget to come share it over on Facebook cause you know we love that sort of thing).

But now you’re staring at a paint coated stencil and a dirty stencil brush.  Ugh, don’t let these items rain on your stencil parade.  And don’t go tossing them either, you sneaky devils!  After all, once you’ve done one stencil project the odds are that you’ll be attempting another one in the near future so you’re going to need that reusable wall or craft stencil. Don’t moan and groan, cleaning a reusable stencil is quite easy.  Today we’re going to chat about how we can clean those up and go about our day.

If you’re a visual learner, watch below to see how the process unfolded.

Step-By-Step Process: Cleaning and Properly Storing Stencils

Let’s walk through the steps on how to wash and dry your stencil and stencil brush and then properly store it.

It might be as easy as running the stencil patterns under water and scrubbing with medium pressure using a dish brush! You can keep the stencil flat by placing it on a cutting board or a cookie sheet while the water runs and you scrub.

It might be as easy as running the stencil patterns under water and scrubbing with medium pressure using a dish brush!

Make sure to place a mesh into a drain hole, you don’t want all that paint residue going down your drain. Depending on the paint used, it can come off very easily or may need a slight pre-soaking to loosen it. Usually, acrylic paints come off very easy, and some latex paints may stick a bit more depending on the paint brand.

If water just isn’t cutting it, try spraying the stencil with Krud Kutter or Simple Green and scrub! This is an eco-friendly cleaner that is sure to cut through dried paint. Janna, Cutting Edge Stencils founder and decorative artist, also suggests using Dawn’s “Power Dissolver” in the same way.

For the tougher to clean stencils, we advise a presoaking period! You can spray the stencil with any cleaner you see fit (see above), and lay it flat in a plastic trash bag overnight. Afterward, clean as previously recommended.

Once the stencil is clean, lay flat on paper towel.  To speed up the drying process, gently roll paper towels on top.

Once the stencil is clean, lay flat on paper towel.  To speed up the drying process, gently roll paper towels on top.

It’s important to remember that it’s very difficult to completely remove spray adhesive from a stencil, but we find that it is not necessary to get it off completely, the stencil still will be very usable for your next project even if it’s a little bit sticky. Just make sure to store it on a piece of a wax paper or freezer paper, as a backing.

Once the stencil is clean, make sure you clean off the stencil brush.  To easily clean the stencil brush, use a dab of brush cleaner then scrub on a brush cleaner tool.  This will ensure that all of the paint is off your brush and that you can use your brush again.

To clean your brushes, use a dab of brush clean and make sure you scrub on a brush cleaning tool to get all the paint off.

Unless you have another project in mind, safely store your stencil for it’s next use.  Either lay it flat under your bed interlaced with paper or hang the stencil using a clothes hanger.  Whichever you choose, DO NOT roll up your stencil.

Either lay it flat under your bed interlaced with paper or hang the stencil using a clothes hanger.  Whichever you choose, DO NOT roll up your stencil.

Thinking about your next project?  See I told you!

  • Follow us on Pinterest and Facebook for awesome inspirational photos!
  • Want to win the new Charlotte Stencil? Then don’t forget to visit the giveaway post!

Thanks for reading!

Michelle and the Cutting Edge Stencils Crew

 

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  • Carol Sanderson

    Try using Williams’ Lectric Shave or CVS’ generic of this product. Lay the stencil on a nonporous cutting board and pour a small amount of Lectric Shave over the stencil. Let sit for a minute then gently rub with your finger and wipe up paint residue with a paper towel. Wash stencil with a small amount of dish soap and water and dry. No scrubbing needed! This product will also easily remove spray adhesive.

  • CESteam

    Hi Carol!

    Thanks for the tip! We will have to try this out :)

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