Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Tag team

I made some tags for the excellent Dutch magazine HobbyHandig  this week and I had forgotten what a fun format it is to work in. The large Movers & Shapers Tag & Bookplates by Tim Holtz is about 8 x16cm and the restricted size seems to stretch your creativity which is no bad thing if you ask me, and let's face it, Tim doesn't seem to struggle does he?

I thought I would play around with a few inks and acrylics on the bookplates which come with this most excellent die. I had so much fun that I may turn this into a mini-series so look out for 'Return of the Tag'.

This die is a Bigz L which means it cuts super thick materials like the mount board I have used today. It's a great investment and something you will return to time and again.

I started by die cutting the bookplate from a scrap of old mount board and painting it with gesso which for those of you who don't know is a super thick paint used to prime art canvases, it's also great for creating a variety of textured effects. 

Once I had applied a nice thick layer I dabbed it with my brush to add random texture, I'm going for the flaky plaster look. Once the gesso is dry, (you can use a heat tool to speed this up) I painted a thin layer of  pale blue acrylic onto the surface before removing most of it with some cotton wool. This will give you a lovely subtle distressed look.

Next, I die cut two sizes of flower and a couple of leaves using the Tattered Garland Decorative Strip Die by Tim Holtz to create a couple of 3D roses. I didn't post the step by step instructions for this as I covered this a few months back (New Blooms part 1, January 8th) using the Tattered Florals flowers, obviously this is done on a much smaller scale.

 I then added a layer of the gesso don't worry if it is a bit gloopy, it all adds to the effect. once the gesso was dry I applied the pale blue paint using a dry brush effect. I used the same techniques to distress an angel made from resin which is part of a set from those clever people at Prima Marketing

It's time to cut my tags, I cut one with a subtle damask pattern and one from wood grain paper both from My Mind's Eye collections. I trimmed away part of the base of the damask tag and applied distress inks to the edges of both in a very subtle fashion. Next, I used a paper distressing tool to rough up the edges of the damask tag a little and scrunched up the bottom. I'm going for a tattered, peeling wallpaper look! Finally, I attached the two tags together.

And here is the finished Tag, the bookplate has a piece of inked card behind it with a couple of word stickers from the Chitchat idea-ology pad by Tim Holtz added. I mounted the bookplate with a length of pale blue organza ribbon before attaching the matching cherub and roses. Finally, I threaded some stained lace and organza ribbon through the hole at the top of the tag.

I hope you can tell from the photo but the resemblance to plaster is quite uncanny, Maybe we'll go for rusty metal next week?


  1. delicate, elegant, just so beautiful!

  2. Thanks For your comments, I love the faux plaster technique!