In this weeks installment of our weekly Stencil Star™ series we feature designer and artist Rachael Goddard of Paint/Design/Décor.  Based in Los Angeles, she frequently designs her client’s homes from the ground up and easily incorporates her love of pattern and color, using our wall stencils and patterns in many of her design and decorative painting projects.

Rachael Goddard and son


Rachael Goddard is a California-based interior designer and artist who specializes in all aspects of design from space planning, color consulting, wall stenciling and exterior design to residential remodels and new construction.   After studying design at the prestigious Parsons design school and Cal State Northridge, Rachael landed her first design job at the age of 24 acting as the project manager for a multi-million dollar commercial development.  She fell in love with all aspects of the design, especially working with architects, creating furniture plans and office layouts, and overseeing the construction of the build.  This was the beginning of a love affair with the design process.   Years later, her first new construction residential project was nominated for a design award.

Although Rachael is anchored in design, it is her love for fine art that, for several years, had Rachael spending nights and weekends working as a fine artist and faux finisher. She was commissioned to do large-scale restaurant chains and luxury real estate development sample homes in addition to her beloved residential projects.  In 2002, all of these elements came together when her company Paint/Design/Décor was born.  Now Rachael provides a full service design firm addressing every element of home design from start to finish.

Rachael’s work has been featured on several design shows. Though she has been asked to be on-camera, she has chosen to stay out of the limelight, preferring to enjoy her quiet life with her two children and husband at home in Los Angeles.

Rachael often uses Royal Design Studio wall stencils to enhance a client’s home in classic patterns and colors.  In the above hallway, the Moorish Trellis allover wall stencil is striking and incredibly elegant in metallic over black. Below, a more muted palette creates a warm and luxury-rustic feel with the Large Fabric Damask.  For this project, she did the wall stencil first and built the room around it while adding the panel molding and custom-made chairs later.

How do you determine which pattern will work for your project?

I determine which pattern to use by imagining every stencil pattern in that space and selecting the one that works the best in my mind.  I can only liken it to the movie “Inception”- Some people like myself have this gift where we can visualize everything in our minds.  I picture exactly what that room will look like and thus, through process of elimination determine what would be too large of a print, too small, too busy, too intricate.  I realize that many people can’t visualize, so I often use Photoshop as a tool to communicate how the wall stencil will work in the room. I find that doing a virtual mock up of the room for my clients is just invaluable.

After the project is done, everyone is always so relieved, surprised and excited. I’m always like, “Yep, it’s exactly how I pictured it to be…”.  My enthusiasm comes earlier in the project when I see it for the first time in my mind, which is probably how I convince them to do it in the first place.  I’m like that with all of the elements of design: designing floor plans, bookshelves, kitchens, closets, sofas…  In the beginning I am super pumped up during the creative process when everyone else is nervous and scared.  For me, it’s like you are all dressed up and alone at a party, excited, dressed up waiting for someone to show up…then by the time everyone gets there, you are bloated from eating too many appetizers, the buzz from the champagne has worn off, the spanx are feeling a little snug and you are thinking about comfy pj’s and what you want to watch when you get into bed!

Above, the Feathered Damask stencil from the Allover Damask Stencil Collection looks amazing, crisp and perfectly nestled within the design of the room.  “I designed the whole bathroom around this wall stencil, from the plank of wood to the bowl and faucet. It was an amazing transformation form the dingy, horrible and depressing little space to the cool, modern and bright space it is now,” Rachael explains.

What draws you to Wall Stenciling?

I am drawn to stenciling because I get the look of a hand-painted wallpaper without the excessive price tag and commitment.  With my stencils I can achieve the look of wallpaper but I have the freedom to use the paint colors I have implemented throughout the rest of the house, so that everything culminates in that one space and joins together in the stencil pattern. I also love the freedom that comes with using wall stencils versus a wallpaper…like the option to change a room on a whim.

Children’s rooms are a particular joy for Rachael.  In the images above, she used various wall pattern stencils to create a collage of color and patterns within panels in her son’s room.  Below, she brings wonderful stencil patterns to a “pretty-in-pink” girl’s room.

It’s good to keep in mind that an allover stencil doesn’t have to be used in the traditional way. For instance, Rachael used individual elements of the Florentine Damask pattern to create a wonderful accent focal wall for the girl’s room above.  In the alternate, she used the Fortuny Damask design in an allover wall pattern in the nursery below, stopping just below the crown molding. Wall stencils are incredible versatile because you can stencil as much or a little as you want!

What would be your “dream” stencil project?

My dream stencil project is anything inside my own house.  I don’t have to worry about anyone else liking it- I don’t have anyone worried it isn’t going to work and having to convince them it’s going to be amazing. I can pick a concept that is totally outside the box. I get to sit up at night after the kids go to bed and put on some music, get out the roller and some artist brushes and just do it.  I often get caught up in doing the main part of my design business, which is more interior design and architectural planning, but when I go to a client’s house with my small brushes to do the technical work and I’m on that ladder with my painting clothes on, it just feels like home to me.  It’s like a two hour massage, I’m so relaxed afterwards.  Except when I do ceilings, then I need a two hour massage!!  Ha!

The Pro Delicate Floral Stencil adds a bit of romance to an office (above).  The Pro size is very useful when a large space will receive an allover wall stencil treatment — it is sized with more stencil repeats to allow for a faster painting process.

We are super thrilled to share Rachel’s stencil work with you today!To see more of Rachael’s incredible work, please visit her unique website for her company, Paint/Design/Décor where she has created a lovely, inspiring flipbook for you to easily view her inspiring design skills. Her skill, creativity and professionalism serve to elevate the art of stenciling. We are SO appreciative of her sharing her innovate and creative ways to use stencils to design contemporary, modern spaces!

5 Responses to “Stencil Star: Rachael Goddard”

  1. Helen Morris Says:

    Lovely work, I shall look forward to viewing her flipbook. The Fortuny Damask wall with the sail boat looks so pretty and the child’s room is refreshing and fun. It’s a great way to re use spare stencils. Lots of block canvases stencilled with the leftovers would look good too.

  2. Melanie Says:

    Thanks for commenting Helen! I suppose you have a “few” spare stencils lying around!! Looking forward to seeing you soon!!!

  3. sylvie michel bilger Says:

    Absolutely stunning work. My favorite is the collage in the children room with several designs brilliant….again BIG Bravo to Rachael !!

  4. katie Says:

    love love love all of Rachael’s work. It’s exactly what I aspire to do in my home one day!!

  5. Melanie Says:

    Glad you were inspired Katie!