DIY Freezer Paper Stencils

Are you ready for the easiest DIY stenciling technique you’ve ever seen? Grab a roll of freezer paper and get ready.

This is one of those DIY projects that I’ve been meaning to try for ages, but just never got around to it. And now I’m kicking myself. It was a project that felt like it was destined to be a “DIY fail” with messy paint lines and broken dreams, so I shuffled it to the back of my list until this weekend, when I had a plain t-shirt and an idea. I started out just wanting to play around to see how the technique worked, but the end result of my first attempt was so much better than anything I expected, I think I’m pretty much finished with the “testing” phase. This is one crazy easy DIY project — just go grab the supplies and get started. I promise you good things will happen.

How does it work? Freezer paper is coated on one side with a thin coating of plastic. After you’ve traced on your design and cut it out, you iron on the freezer paper, plastic side down, to your fabric. Boom. Stencil. It pulls right off once the paint has dried, leaving clean lines and a perfect design.

All you need are the following supplies: freezer paper (which can be found in your local grocery store near the wax paper), fabric paint, a soft paintbrush, a freshly washed plain t-shirt, and a scrap of cardboard. 

Since I was just playing around, I decided to measure out a three inch strip of freezer paper for a test drive.

I didn’t want to spend that much time being meticulous on something I wasn’t sure was going to work, so I just freehanded a geometric design.

After drawing, it was time to spend a few moments of quality time with my craft knife, except I couldn’t find it. Utility knife to the rescue.

From there, it was time to iron it on (a few quick passes with a dry iron – nix the steam) and see first how I liked it, and see second if the freezer paper really was adhered on the fabric. And holy smokes, y’all — I did, and it was. 

So I pulled out my craft and fabric paints and decided to play around with an alternating pattern between the white and a shimmery champagne color. 

Once the paint was dry, it was as simple as gently peeling off the freezer paper and admiring a project I was not expecting to turn out so well. Presto change-o. More spiffed-up toddler clothes.

Have you ever gone into a DIY with low expectations and been pleasantly surprised? I usually have a good sense of what I’m getting myself into before I launch into a project, but this one got me — in a good way! Three cheers for a #diywin!

Here’s another fun idea for turning ho-hum or trash clothes into adorable treasures.

3 Responses

  1. merrypad says:

    Great tutorial! I've been meaning to try that for years myself!

  2. Awestruck_DIY says:

    I love the "I just got run over by a muddy tire" look!

  3. Keri_HGTV says:

    Love this idea! I'm pinning it to my craft board right now. So many ideas are forming. Thanks, Ellen!

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About Ellen Foord 

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As the founder, designer, and one-woman workforce behind Minnow + Co, a tight budget has never stopped this DIY-girl-at-heart from creating a beautiful, modern, creative home and treating every ...

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