How to Stencil Gift Wrapping: A step by step Tutorial

Learn how to stencil gift wrapping to create unique and personal gifts for the holidays

I’m so excited today to be sharing a couple of ways how to stencil gift wrapping today. I also love wrapping a gift with fabric for a unique look!

This is really SUCH a simple, inexpensive touch that makes your gifts look special. And all it takes is one crafty (and here in Minnesota, snowy!) afternoon. Read on below for the instructions, supplies and tips.,


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For this first method here, we will see how to stencil gift wrapping on a larger area.stencil-on-gift-wrap

  1. Unroll your wrapping paper and lay it flat on your work surface. Plain wrapping paper works best for this.
  2. Pour acrylic paint into a palette. A little goes a long way here, you don’t need too much paint for stenciling.
  3. Place your stencil onto the paper. Apply the paint. Carefully lift the stencil off while paint is still wet.
  4. Wipe off the back of the stencil before you place it on the paper again. That way you won’t transfer any paint where you don’t want it.
  5. Using a different color and a different area of the stencil repeat the above steps.
  6. Let paint dry in between and keep repeating this process till you have covered the entire paper or as much area as you would need.
  7. Keep it simple. Use one or two colors of paint only to keep the pattern interesting but not too busy.

For this second method, we will see how to stencil gift wrapping after the box has been wrapped already.Deco-art-floral-stencil

  1. Place stencil on top of the wrapped gift box. Center the stencil or move it to where  you want it to be.
  2. Using masking tape or any tacky tape, hold the stencil in place. This is a very necessary step here as we will be adding various colors of paint and don’t want the stencil to move.
  3. Pour your acrylic paints into a palette. Use as many colors as you want!
  4. Apply paints onto stencil carefully. Make sure to keep the colors inside the areas you want them to be.
  5. Work quickly, because you will need to lift the stencil off while ALL of the paints are still wet.
  6. Lift the stencil off carefully to reveal the design!


I honestly like the second method better- because the results are really dramatic and becomes the focus of the gift. The first method is a lot of fun create- especially if you have crafty kids at home- but you have to wait for the paint to dry before moving the stencil around freely and have to be careful not to smudge the wet paint.

Which method did you like most? Let me know in the comments below!



  1. Try getting a stipple brush to use over the stencils. These kind of brushes make it easy to apply pressure over the stencil. You will need smaller brushes while working on detailed stencils so having a set of brushes like these is a good idea. If you don’t have a stipple brush, try cutting up inexpensive make up sponges as use those to dab the paint. A regular paint brush is just not as easy to use.
  2. A masking tape is great to hold the stencils in place but you can also use a tacky glue spray instead to hold the stencil in place. If you are beginner, I would suggest taping the stencil in place ALWAYS, but once you have done this once or twice you might get away by just holding the stencil in place with your left hand instead.
  3. Always apply paint with a DRY stipple brush. Never bring a wet brush to a stencil. In fact, I never wash my brushes in between colors, I just wipe them off on a clean kitchen towel or paper. To prevent paint from seeping under the stencil, pick up just a little paint onto your brush each time. Too much paint on the brush will apply a thick layer of paint which can ooze beneath the stencil.
  4. Cleaning your stencils while the paint is still wet is very important. You can use a wet wipe or the run stencil under a tap. I am not good at cleaning them right away, so instead I fill up my sink with water and place my stencil in it till I am done with my project. Once I am done I just use a bit of soap to clean the paint off of the stencils. Works like a charm!

This post was created in partnership with DecoArt. The tutorial, ideas, thoughts and everything else is my own! DecoArts has a great line of stencils. The ones I used here were of high quality, with such beautiful detailing. I used non holiday stencils (and colors) here today to create a fun vibe to my holiday gift wrapping, what can I say, this girl likes pink a little too much these days! But you can easily create the same with holiday themed stencils like these

I hope this post was helpful for you to learn how to stencil gift wrapping and it makes it easy for you to try this technique yourselves. The hardest part of this craft is really waiting for the paint dry!

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