Saturday, May 19, 2012

Bird Journal Tags - Part One


I love making journal tags from different kinds of material, but for today (actually the whole last week) I will be using manila shipping tags.  I buy the stringed kind, but most of the time I remove the string to attach another type of tie.  I save the strings to use later.  For part one I will show you how to properly distressed the tags.  In the second part I will show how to adorn them.  (There is not proper way - I am just kidding!)  My apologies for the poor photography in advance.

 For the first batch, I left them natural.  I laid the tags out on my trusty, non-rusty, aluminum window screen.  I keep three spray bottles by the door: One for water, one for alcohol, and one for walnut ink stain.  

I spritzed the walnut ink stain first, followed immediately by the alcohol.  The alcohol spreads the ink out and helps the drying process. (And the water?  To keep the puppies from running across the patio while I am working!)

Then I lay the second screen over the first to hold the tags in place.  On a hot, sunny day (we have plenty of those in South Carolina) they take about 15 minutes.  

The red design is spray paint from a previous project!

The next three batches I wanted to paint.  I used plain old craft paint - nothing fancy and a worn brush I use for distressing small objects.  Its bristles have seen better days!  I know you green people are wondering why the Styrofoam plate.  I will use this plate multiple times.  When it gets too grungy, I will layer waxed paper on it to continue using it. 

 Lime green for this batch only on one side.

Notice the curl?  Don't worry about it - the tags will lay flat when dry.

Spicy mustard is the color here.  Look at the paint treatment - hit or miss!  (Distressed! YEAH!)

Turquoise on both sides for these tags - I paint both sides at the same time and lay out on waxed paper to dry.

Put on screen, spritz with ink stain, blah, blah, blah...

Brightly-colored tags turn into...

Nicely distressed tags!

The backs get the treatment. too.

Select some great images of birds from The Graphics Fairy. 

First cut the images to fit the tags. I used a simple Mod Podge method. Apply a thin coat on the back of the image.  Lay it down on the front of the tag and smooth.  If there are bubbles or ridges, lay a piece of waxed paper over the image and rubbed with a paper towel.  I let these dry overnight, but you can continue to work if they are dry to the touch.

After they are dry, I put a medium coat of Mod Podge over the entire front of the tags to seal.  By the way, I mostly use matte Mod Podge.

Here are all the different tags waiting for the next step which is...

...stamping them!  I used stamps from Inkadinkadoo, 7 gypsies, and TPC.  The ink pads: black, baby blue, and brown from Stampabilities.

Stamp over the images, under the images, and above the images.  Make those little birds sing!

Either wait for them to dry or use a heat gun.  While the ink is wet, you may want to emboss them, but I am not good at that so I will skip that step!

 Here they are sitting around waiting for their beauty treatment.  In Part Two, the tags will be adorned with an assortment of things.  Adornments will include torn calico ribbons and rusty stuff. (of course!)

Thank you for stopping to read.  I hope you will share some of your tags - just send me your link!

See y'all!

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