Victoria Larsen Home Decor Stencils
Stencil designer Victoria Larsen was raised amongst paint tubes, brushes and canvases. “My Mother is a very talented artist.”, she says. “As my interest in art grew, she encouraged me to read historical books on the master artists.” Victoria used stencils from the time she was little. “My love of drawing and love of stencils were a natural combination which led me to become a designer for these awesome decorating tools.”, she says.
Launching a Stencil Business
Initially, Victoria created a small line of very realistic stencils. One day, as a friend carrying a purse stenciled with one of Victoria’s designs shopped at Ben Franklin Crafts, she was approached by a buyer for the store asking about the stencil. Within a year Victoria’s stencils were being carried by over 100 Ben Franklin stores nationwide.
Victoria recruited family members to help with her first trade show. To attract customers, she offered a free mini stencil. “When the doors opened and the crowd stepped in the room, a hoard of people suddenly made a mad dash for us. We all looked at each other with panic on our faces!” Within two hours they were completely sold out. With no product left for the remainder of the show, they did stenciling demonstrations.
Since that first show, word has continued to spread. Victoria’s designs have been featured in publications like Better Homes and Gardens and Victorian Country Homes., as well as Paint Saves the Day and The House That Faux Built.
One thing that makes Victoria’s business unique is her line of raised plaster stencils, which she says is the largest collection of its kind in the industry. More recently she’s introduced the art of cast plaster decorating to the DIY market, offering over 40 decorative plaster molds for ceilings and walls.
The newest addition to Victoria’s collection is a granite stencil that customers can use to transform old laminate countertops. “The effect is gorgeous and you have to look twice to tell it’s not real granite.”, she says.
Dining Room Wall Transformation
When customer Sue Thompson wanted a stone wall in her dining room, she found even stone veneer was out of her budget. So Victoria recommended creating a realistic looking stone wall with simple joint compound and a raised plaster stencil. “She did such a great job that we plan to present the project to Better Homes and Gardens later this year.”, says Victoria.
Victoria’s biggest challenge? Keeping up! “I oversee every aspect of the business from design conception to order fulfillment.” She insists on taking each phone call and answering every email herself. She also maintains her own website, blog, and social media presence. But she’s not complaining. “I love every single second of it!”