Monday, November 12, 2012

Shabby Chic Angel Tag Tutorial

Just in time for the holidays, I made a batch of “Shabby Chic” angel tags. The shabby effect is achieved with several techniques—using recycled tea bags for the background, unevenly applying white printmaking paint to the tea bags, and using an intentionally torn effect on the angel images. The shabbiness is contrasted with the chicness of delicate, sheer laces and gossamer pastel ribbon trim.

Here’s how I made the tags:

1-use a commercial tag as a base (I got mine at Staples), or cut your own from a beige, smooth poster weight paper.

2-take dried tea bags, carefully open them, empty out the tea, and flatten. The uneven tea stains give a nice aged look. Do not use damp tea bags—they will rip. Any kind of tea is fine, but take the bags out before you add sugar, lemon or milk.

3-select a variety of stamps—lacey textures work well but any stamp will do. French fleur de lis or English classic designs also make great 'faux lace.'

4-apply white printmaking paint to the stamps. You can experiment and mix the patterns.

5-drape the tea bag over the stamp and press lightly, then carefully remove the tea bag and repeat until it is all covered. You can get usually get two or more images from each paint application. I call the painted teabags ‘faux lace.’ Depending on the size of the tea bag, you may need several for each tag. Printmaking paint works best, but you can use any white paint, just be sure to clean the stamps carefully when you are done so they don’t get paint stuck in the crevices. Printmaking paint works well because it stays wet longer than regular paint, which prevents it from drying on your stamp.

6-when the painted tea bags have dried, glue them to the commercial tag, covering the base completely. It is okay to layer the tea bags or rip little pieces and fill in where necessary to get complete coverage.

7-select a center image and glue to tag—I used some angels from The Graphics Fairy.

8-add strips of lace—thin, sheer laces work well. Thicker laces work better on the edges since they will obscure the subtle textures and colors of the tea bags and ‘faux lace.’ These laces are from M&J Trim.

9-if desired, add a little chalk pastel to enhance the center image, and also to soften the background color.

10-add a bow of shimmery ribbon at the top, and some extra lace or rick-rack at the bottom.

1 comment:

Barb King said...

These are sweet. Check out my blog when you get a chance, I make tags and cards.