Timeless Thoughts: Stencils

Timeless Thoughts

Timeless Thoughts is a monthly linkup hosted by Georgie and Tara, where bloggers write about something from their past – it could be an item, a place, an event – anything that evokes a trip down memory lane. Timeless Thoughts is held on the first Saturday of the month, and runs for two weeks.

This month’s Timeless Thoughts linkup is hosted by Tara, so visit her post for this month to add your link to the linkup.

When I was much younger I loved getting creative. I was really into colouring books, activity books, and I liked having a blank page to draw and write. I wasn’t terrific at drawing, but I really liked colouring other people’s drawings. I have taken a liking to ‘adult colouring books’ lately – we have some in our ‘breakout room’ at work. It’s crazy that I lose my patience quite quickly with them, but they make for a good ten minutes of focus every now and then.

One thing that I did forget about for many years was plastic stencils. As I couldn’t draw much more than disproportionate, little-more-than-stick stick figures, and random little cartoon-like animals and shapes like hearts and swirls, I found stencils pretty fun and they gave me an opportunity to put together scenes with cut-outs.

Plastic stencils with basic shapes
Plastic stencils with basic shapes

Although stencilling is considered some kind of artistic style now, I really enjoyed the plastic stencils that you drew in. In fact, having any kind of shape that you could draw around – like a cup or a saucer – was pretty fun for a kid who couldn’t draw well but could ‘draw’ with a bit of help.

I’m not a huge fan of the style of some stencilled art as it looks a bit blocky and not very natural. There are others that look very pretty.

Intricate heart stencil cutouts
Intricate heart stencil cutouts

Regardless of style, I think we can all agree that at one point in time we thought stencils were pretty cool – no? :D

Images from Aliexpress.com and Craftsy.com.

Comments on this post

Oh myyy I remember I used to collect these because they were fun for coloring! I like drawing but of course I could never do any of the intricate designs. So if stencils belong in Timeless Thoughts what do kids use today? :P

Haha I wouldn’t say that they ‘belong’ here, anything I write about could well be something I suddenly find myself in love with again, even as an adult. :P

I remember having stencils. I loved drawing and colouring in as a kid. I even used to make my own mini ‘books’ haha. That love of drawing etc didn’t really extend into adulthood – unlike my sister, who is a bit more ‘artsy’ and creative than I am!

I used to have an alphabet stencil. I think I had another that had shapes, and flowers and the sun or something? I used it a lot :)

Those heart stencil cut outs are beautiful indeed :O

And as a sidenote, those adult colouring books are FAR too intricate for my liking…!

Oh my goodness. I remembered those days when I used stencils to draw out all of these cute cartoons XD. The stencils that looked blocky are the worst! How can people have a “natural feel” when it comes to using stencils?

It’s a pretty neat stepping stone for kids when it comes to drawing. They can have muscle memory of how drawing a bone feels like and etc. Meanwhile, “adult stencils” are awesome! I definitely can’t mass cut certain designs by hand. Stencils are cool and should remain as something that is part of a child’s life XD.

i always find plastic stencils adorable. especially plastic stencil rulers :) i used to use them a lot for doodles. i’ve always been more of the doodly type rather than the artsy one, i guess so stencils were such a thing for me. for some reason, this is so nostalgic ;)

I remember I had a big A3 sized plastic sheet with stenciled letters on it. I used that for projects and things every so often, I also had a ruler that had some stencil cut outs too. I’m not sure I ever user though, I wasn’t too interested in them. I enjoyed colouring in more, although now that I’m doing adult colouring I find it more frustrating than stress relief. Maybe it’s the particular types I have.

I used to love stencils, but the letter ones always used to annoy me. It was always really hard to get my pencil in the right place to make them look good, and a lot of the letters had bits missing. I think I had some very basic stencils haha. They’ve probably got a lot more advanced now!

I thought those plastic stencils were so fun when I was young! I really liked collecting them too. There were some that were more intricate and were so pretty. I also liked using them as an outline and then filling in details :) This makes me wonder where my old stencils are!

Stencils, rulers, et cetera drove me crazy as a kid and even still I can’t stand them LOL. I could never keep mine STILL, and I’d always move them and then it was a pain trying to re-align them with what I’d already drawn . . . This is the curse of my unsteady hands that have crap fine motor skills XD;; Still, I can see how they’d be appealing, and they are still appealing to kids today, even with the ones I work with!