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How To Stencil An Accent Wall

hexagon stencil design in powder room
Painting a bold geometric stenciled design on a wall in our powder room was the project that infused this small space with lots of drama.

The makeover of our powder room was in its final stage. A planked ceiling was installed, a vanity was built, and the walls were patched and painted glossy black. It was time to give the vanity area a good style punch by stenciling a pretty hexagon allover design.

Wall stencils are a great way to give your room a fabulous pattern or design on a meager budget compared to other alternatives, such as wallpaper or tile; that's precisely why I choose to go with a stenciled accent wall.

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Let me tell you about my experience stenciling this hexagon design in our powder room, the mistakes, and the lessons learned.

If you have never stenciled before, the experts recommend avoiding using geometric designs, high-contrast paint options, and glossy paints. 


An abstract is more forgiving than a geometric design when little mistakes happen, or the walls aren't that straight. The same concept goes for high contrast & glossy paint treatments. Minor errors will be more visible when using those options.

I went against all those recommendations and still managed to develop a rather great-looking geometric design in this bathroom!


Patch, prime, and paint the wall in your chosen color.

I painted the entire bathroom in Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black in a satin finish. The sheen would help bounce the light to make this small space appear larger. Again, it is better to use flat latex finish paints for general stenciling projects.

Mask off the other walls, ceiling, switch plates, etc., before you begin stenciling.

walls ready for stencil

The tools & materials you'll need:

I used the Cutting Edge Stencils hexagon allover stencil, and I love that it comes with a free top and one single stencil included. That single hexagon stencil made this entire project way easier to accomplish.

Easy-Tack adhesive was sprayed on the back of the main stencil to get a better grab on the wall, easily reposition it, and prevent paint seepage.
hexagon stencil design on accent wall


A great variety of designs need to be centered on the wall; that wasn't the case with this hexagon design. 

For this allover design, the main factor was ending up with both sides of the wall in a symmetric way.

Walls aren't straight; use a level to set the design on the wall. I used my laser level, which quickly set the horizontal and vertical lines to follow.

The picture below shows my way of measuring how to end up the design on the lower part of the wall. The top or, in this case, the low stencil was positioned atop the main stencil to set it as the design starting point.
Powder room makeover with hexagon stencil design


Talking about the amount of paint loaded on the roller, yes, less is more. You need to load the high-density roller with paint, BUT... you need to get rid of excess paint.

I first rolled the excess paint on an empty paper plate, then I gave it a few passes on paper towels before bringing it onto the stencil.

high-density stencil roller with paint


Paint the design on the wall lightly, rolling the paint over the stencil. 

Cristina Garay stenciling hexagon design in powder room

Working those corners with this type of setup was a big no-no. I held the stencil with my free hand while bringing the roller the closest possible to the corner, but it wasn't close enough. 

This is how it looked after two coats. By the way, those coats of paint are very light. The first part was already dry when I finished painting the last hexagon.

black and white hexagon design on wall

The stenciled was repositioned. This time, I ensured it stayed off the corners. Those corners gave me lots of trouble, but I finally figured out how to work them. 

Before going to that solution, I had to paint all those complete hexagons.

black and white hexagon design on wall


Painting with a high-density roller goes fast, but it gave me not too-sharp lines. Maybe the roller was carrying too much paint? 

It's possible. Even though I made sure to roll it plenty of times on the paper towels, it was almost dry when I brought it to the wall.

At this point, I changed my strategy and started using stenciling brushes in a dry-brush technique. Once again, the brush had to be loaded, but you need to get rid of excess paint by dapping the brush onto paper towels.

Some people paint in a circular motion when using brushes. Instead, I used the stippling method, dapping the brush onto the stencil openings.

Stippling sure takes longer, but the lines are very sharp. Using a bigger brush would've been even better. 

Stippling stencil design


Working with a big stencil on a small wall like the one I was tackling was a nuisance. I was so glad to have this single hexagon included with this design!

I first trimmed both sides of the single stencil, so each side could be positioned right in the middle of the top and bottom hexagon designs already on the wall. It worked like a charm. So much easier for these areas closer to the corner.
black and white hexagon stenciled design on wall


My solution to reaching those corners without trouble was to use a paper cutter to trim that single stencil as I went along.
cutting the stencil to make it fit corners

You need to identify the most complete hexagons and trim the stencil, so it fits that area on the wall. 

After painting all whole hexagons, the stencil was trimmed to fit this spot in the picture below.
How to stencil an accent wall

Then, it was cut even more to fit other areas in the other corner. The last parts to be tackled were the four corners.

This was a phenomenal solution instead to dealing with a humongous stencil that doesn't vent nicely.
How to stencil an accent wall

Here, almost done! I had to go get the ladder to reach the top.
Powder room makeover with hexagon stenciled wall

A new line of painter's tape was set opposite to create crisp lines on that backsplash.
caulking backsplash

Up close, you can see those little imperfections, but overall I'm delighted with the result.

hexagon stenciled wall in powder room

I love my new powder room!!

Powder room makeover with hexagon stencil design

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  1. I absolutely love this! Makes me want to redo my powder room!!!!! Beautiful!

  2. I love the boldness! Great job on stenciling!

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