No. 1 teacher pencil {DIY finish}

We love teachers! When COVID hit and all us Mom’s instantly became homeschool teachers, it was rough! At the time, I had a 7th grader, 5th grader, 3rd grader, 1st grader, preschooler, and a baby. Oh my goodness! My world shifted so much, as did theirs, and everyone else’s. I’m happy to say we all survived and thrived, once we figured things out. This experience made me appreciate teachers so much more. I realized how hard their job is and gosh! I am grateful for all they do.

Today on the blog, I am going to show you how to make a unique teacher gift for that special teacher in your life. Let’s get started!

*Note: When you click the links in this post, we may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.


1. Stain your pencil tip (Optional)

Wipe your unfinished wooden pencil free of saw dust. Stain just the tip Dark Walnut stain. You can leave the tip unstained if you prefer. Staining it just gives it a seal to the wood that will not be covered with paint. Here is a link to how I stain all my projects.

Wipe off the excess stain using an old towel. This helps it dry faster.

2. Paint the metal band

Did you know that the metal band of a pencil is called the “ferrule”? Neither did I. I had no idea. For today we are going to call it the “metal band”. I think that sounds great!

Using your painter’s tape; tape off a small section for the metal band. Tape newspaper over the eraser part and the main part of the pencil.

Take it outside and spray paint it silver. Be sure to paint the sides and in the little grooves.

Set aside to dry.

3. Paint the pencil

Once the spray paint and stain are dry, you can move on to painting the rest of your pencil. I painted my pencil if a different order but here I have listed the order that makes more sense to save you time.

Remove the news paper and painter’s tape and begin by drawing the scalloped edge at the point of the pencil.

Use a small bristle brush to paint the scalloped edge.

Now paint the rest of your pencil using a sponge brush. (Don’t worry about my eraser already being painted, remember I told you I painted mine in the wrong order)

Now that you have painted the main color of your pencil, carefully paint the eraser the color of your choice. Don’t touch the main part of the pencil if the paint is still wet. You can always touch the silver because you know that part is dry.

Paint the tip of the pencil black using the small paint brush. Again, don’t touch the main paint if it is still wet. Touch the stained part because you know it is dry.

After you have painted the main color, eraser, and tip go back and do a second or third coat to make sure it is coated good. Let it dry completely before moving on to the next step.

4. Apply your stencil

Now that your pencil is dry, you are going to apply the stencil to paint the lettering. Lay out your stencil on the pencil so you know the placement.

Peel the paper backing off the stencil, making sure the vinyl sticks to the clear tape.

Carefully lay the stencil on your pencil. Make any adjustments you may need to center it before pressing it firmly to the pencil. Rub over the whole stencil, making sure it sticks to the pencil.

Once you have your stencil in place and you have pressed firmly over it, you want to remove the clear tape, making sure that the stencil stays on the pencil.

5. Paint the stencil

After you have removed the clear tape, once again press firmly over the edges of the stencil along the letters to make sure it it good and stuck. This will prevent the stencil from lifting up when you are painting.
Paint a thin layer of the main color to seal the edges of the stencil and give you sharp lines on your finished letters.

Let that coat of paint dry completely and then begin painting your letters black. Paint 2-3 thin coats of paint, until your letters are filled in all the way. I painted 3 thin coats on mine.

After you have painted your last coat of paint, carefully remove the stencil. When doing this step, pay attention to the stencil being removed because it has wet paint on it and you don’t want to get that on other parts of your pencil. You can wait until it is dried but you run the risk of removing some of the painted letters with the stencil.

Use an X-Acto knife to remove the small pieces inside the letters. Make any touch ups using a small paint brush. I also like to use my X-Acto knife to scrape any of the paint that may have slid under the stencil edges, to sharpen the lines of my letters.

Let your pencil dry and then do a cute photo shoot with your child and the pencil!


A special addition I add to the pencils my children make: I have my children write a special thank you to the teacher on the back and sign their name. I also attach a picture of them on the back so the teacher can always remember which student gave them the pencil.

Hopefully you enjoyed your time learning and finishing your pencil. I know teachers cherish them. We love our teachers!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *