Hallo there everyone.

It is me Marlene, from ART BY MARLENE, bringing you a blogpost all the way from Holland. In my last 2 blogposts for The Crafter’s Workshop my theme was  watercolors and stencils …today will be the last post on the combination of these two.

Today I will be sharing with you, how to create a patterned journal spread using a great stencil, designed by Julie Fei-Fan Balzer, for The Crafter’s Workshop and watercolors. I thought I would mention that The Crafter’s Workshop provided me with some products to create this project. This post may contain affiliate links, but, the opinions I share are solely my own.


TCW539 Stencil Patterns by Julie Fei-Fan Balzer (12’x12′)

I will start out, by doing the unthinkable(for alot of you), I am cutting up my stencil in 9 pieces! I love patterned backgrounds. (Having a very versatile stencil on hand in my little ‘on the go’ art journaling kit ,is a must.) By cutting this stencil up and placing them all on a little ringclip, it changed into a small , but VERY versatile stencil.


Cutting up stencils and placing them on a ringclip

I open my journal to a empty page and start out by using a Pilot Permaball pen. I  first draw  the outlines from the stencils with a medium size fineliner, but I also combine it with an extra fine fineliner, to create interesting variations in the lines.


using a fineliner draw the outlines

Change the direction of your stenciling as you go along, this will ensure a playfull look.


change direction/placement of stencil

Don’t forget to leave some “quiet space” when drawing in your patterns. It is important to have some areas where your eyes can “rest” when looking at a design. Once all your outlines are done, choose the colors that you feel comfortable with, to fill in your patterns.


stenciling outlines with fineliner

I love bold and bright watercolors, so that is exactly what I am going to use. First fill in the background areas. Make sure you have soft transitions where your colors change over into one another.


watercolor on stenciled patterns

Now you can fill in the patterns themselves with watercolor, I also make sure I have some color variations within the patterns. I like to create the idea that the patterns cast shadows, I do this by adding a line of color outside the pattern area or by making the one side of the pattern darker than the other.


shading the patterns with watercolor

Now take a dive into your little scraps of painted papers. Look for a little piece of paper you can cut into a square and one you can cut into a heart.


scrap painted papers

With some double sided tape I stuck 3 sides of my square to my background, creating a small pocket for my little heart. On the back of the heart you can write some secret journaling.


make a pocket

That is it….you have created a patterned watercolor page with one single stencil!


A watercolor page created with a single pattern stencil.

Be sure, if you try this at home, to share it  on our Facebook page or by tagging The Crafter’s Workshop on Instagram or Pinterest!

See you soon!

Marlene Meijer-van Niekerk


The Crafter’s Workshop Design Team Member





    1. Thank you Consie. I have been known to cut down my stencils….sometimes I even cut of borders, to have less hard edges. In the end of the day a stencil is a art tool that you need to use to suit your own needs, hey!?

  1. Just found this blog today – I like the project, and, I never thought about cutting up stencils to make them into smaller stencils! I think that is a great idea, I have one I may try that with!

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