How to stencil a leaf design onto table linen

Give a plain table runner a country-style makeover with our quick and easy guide to stencilling your own leaf design

foliage themed table and leaf design

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dan Duchars)

Step into spring with a pretty foliage-themed table setting featuring a stencilled runner. It is easy to stencil your own runner - just follow this step-by-step tutorial, put together by Country Homes & Interiors.

You will need:

  • A selection of leaves - choose leaves with different shapes for the best result
  • Plain table runner (we used one costing £14.99 from Dunelm)
  • Fabric paint (available from Dunelm - we used green but there are lots of other colours to choose from)
  • Masking tape
  • Needle and tacking thread (optional)
  • Stencil brush

Step one

Lay a plain white table runner on a large flat surface that you have covered with newspaper to protect. Use masking tape to section off the areas of the runner that you want to paint.

Step two

Arrange your choice of clean, dry leaves in each of the masked areas (you will find that tacking them in place with a needle and thread makes the painting much easier).

Step three

Working quickly to get the best result, use a stencil brush to stipple your chosen stencil paint inside the masked areas and around the edges of the leaves. Let the fabric paint dry completely, then remove the masking tape, tacking thread (if you are using) and leaves.

Step four

Follow the manufacturer's instructions for fixing the fabric paint in place.

For a country-inspired styling idea, display your decorated runner on a rustic wooden table and team with white crockery. You can extend the theme by using the same technique to stencil matching place mats and napkins. Finish the seasonal look by filling coloured glass jars with fresh flowers and gathered twigs.

You'll find more creative craft ideas on our gallery.