I saw this cute tote at Old Navy a few months ago and quickly snapped it up. It was on sale and I had a coupon to make it even cheaper, plus I’m a sucker for just plain (some would say boring, but I would say classic) looking stuff like this. But once I had it at home I kept thinking about how great it looked now that it was clean and new, but without any sort of pattern or detailing, it would start looking dirty and dingy pretty quickly once it was put to regular use. I needed to do something to spruce it up a bit.
Now remember also that this is Erin, the one who can’t sew and doesn’t have fabric stores nearby, so I needed a solution that would work for me. So this is what I came up with.
You’ll never believe what I used as a stencil…a doily. This is so easy and a good way to add intricate detail that isn’t overly time consuming or tedious.
You simply spray the back of the doily with some tacky spray, (I used photo spray adhesive, but any stencil spray would work perfectly as well,) and then place it on the bag. You can rearrange it a bit if necessary. Once you have it exactly the way that you want it, smooth the doily down so that it is completely flat. I also added a board book of my son’s on the inside to make sure that I would be stenciling on a hard flat surface.
You’ll need some fabric paint and stenciling sponges, and you simply work the paint into the holes. Be careful to blot the sponge when you’re doing this because like with any other stencils, you don’t want the paint to get under the doily and ruin the design. But the good thing about doilies is that the pattern is very irregular, so if you do get a few good globs, you will probably be the only one who knows the difference.
Once I went over the big holes with my stencil sponge, I got a small stiff paint brush and went over the little holes that are around the edges of the doily. You could do this part with the sponge, but I don’t have an incredibly steady hand and was worried that I might go over the edge of the doily a bit. Or you could just not fill those holes in at all. Again, no one will know the difference but you.
I ended up with 2 designs on one side and just 1 on the other. I guess I’m still a sucker for the minimal. But this is a little bit dressier minimal, right? :)
I am linking this project to these fantastic blogs. Please take a moment to scroll around and see all of the talent and great ideas that are shared by some great women.
Have a great week!