Saturday, September 18, 2010

Postage Collage

Michelle McCarthy used a fun Serendipity technique on this tag:


She covered each side of the tag with O’So Sticky Tape and layered all of her collage items onto the tape.  As one of the last steps she filled in all of the gaps with micro beads!


There are so many fun items on these tags!  I’d love for Michelle to share what all she used!  (I didn’t get to keep one of these for my book because I only did one set of tags and Michelle did two.)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Bead Masking Basics

Bead masking is a technique I haven’t played with in awhile! 

Thanks to Marianne Colschen for reminding me about this fun beadie way to embellish!  Today’s post is a little notepad that Marianne shared with me.

Years ago I did a photo tutorial of bead masking for one of our free online classes.  We have lots of those tutorials on our website now for your use.  I’ve edited the bead basics masking class to update the information for this blog post.

bead masking

My photography has definitely evolved over the years and I apologize for the poor quality of photos below!

This project idea comes from the Design Originals book “Stuck On Beads” Volume 1 (which is no longer in print. )


O’So Sticky Tape sheet, micro beads in various colors, plastic tape liners from used up O’So and something to stick it all onto.

I have chosen to use a dark piece of cardstock to contrast and set off the bead design on my card.


Step 1

Cut a piece of O’So Sticky Tape (from a sheet) into card front size 5.5” by 4.25”

Apply to the front of a card by using our tried and true “tape trick” which is done by only peeling back a corner of the liner.  This allows you to move and manipulate the tape sheet until it is perfectly in place on the card.  Press down on the exposed corner to anchor the tape sheet and then slowly pull away the liner smoothing the tape down onto the card as you go.

For this project, it really doesn’t matter which liner you remove first, the paper or the red plastic.  (Please note that our paper liners changed from a mustard color kraft paper to white paper in 2004).

When you are finished with Step 1 the front of your card should be completely covered with O’So Sticky Tape – like this:


I am showing you two examples – in the one on the left, I peeled the red liner first. In the one on the right I peeled the paper liner first – it doesn’t matter which way you do it.

Use whatever size tape liners you have on hand.  Strips can also be cut from sheet liners but you must take care to only put the release side down on your project if you use any paper liners.

In this tutorial I’ll be using 1/4” size but it really can be any size.  If all you have is 1” liners, and you want a 1/4” line, then just trim the liners.  If you have a lot of paper liners left over from other projects, you can cut those up to use.  In fact, you could even get fancy and cut the paper with decorative scissors if you want to.  Remember though that the red liners are made of plastic and have a “rubbery” texture to them – so I wouldn’t recommend that you try to cut them decorative scissors.

Step 2

Remove the liner from the tape you placed onto the card front, exposing the entire adhesive. Try not to touch it or bump it – cause you’ll get stuck.

Lay the liners onto the exposed adhesive in any pattern that suits you. It is okay to cross over with this method – it’ll come back up easily.

You’ll want to press the liners down firmly onto the adhesive – I used a pencil eraser to rub along each piece to make sure it was stuck down good! You may also want to trim any long ends – to keep them from catching and pulling off before you want them to.

This is what I did:


Step 3a

The adhesive from the sheet placed onto the cardstock in step 1 showing through the criscross design I made with the liners. This open area is what will be beaded first.

Press the card front into whatever color you would like.

Insert Picture

I was planning to insert a picture here – but when I peeled away the first liners I got so caught up in the moment that I totally forgot I was preparing for a class and I steamed onto the next step. Oops!

Step 3b 

Next, remove the top layer of liners from the card and press into another color of beads.


So far, I used the Light Blue Opaque in step 3a (the one I didn’t get a picture of) and then Royal Blue Opaque.

Step 3c

Remove the last layer of liners and press into a third color of beads.

I chose silver, and am now thinking that I would have liked it much better had I used the silver FIRST, so that all my “diamonds” were silver rather than light blue. That’s okay – I’ll try it again another time!


And don’t forget that you can SAVE THESE LINERS TOO! Yep – you can just keep on using them over and over and over – they don’t wear out!

Masking Notes

My husband, Brian really gets credit for coming up with the whole “Save Your Liner” campaign. This is what he created with recycled liners:


Our son Jordan created some very cool beaded pens using the masking technique:


He also made a neat vase with just ONE sheet of O’So Sticky Tape and LOTS of recycled liners:


Here’s a larger view of Marianne’s little notepad:

bead masking

Postcard Collage

Lynn Lake used recycled vintage post cards for her travel tags along with a quote by Mark Twain:


Let’s get moving!!  Ü


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Take A Ride

Vicki Chow’s travel tag has a fun garage door opening:

vickifront And inside is her classic car!

vickifront2 I remember the fun of road trips as a kid in my mom’s classic 1967 California Special Mustang, good times!

Enjoy The Journey

Kelli Green’s travel tags are “Totally Tim”!!  From the coloring technique to the stamps, style and embellishments Kelli has done Tim Holtz proud!kellifront Here’s your ticket to ride along!


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Passport To Adventure

Passports are always a requirement if you want to adventure beyond our country borders and Mary Wallace has given us our very own passport to adventure anywhere we’d like to go (in our imaginations at least!)


Completely embossed on the outside, Mary’s passports feel like the real thing!  Inside of the passport Mary has actually added fun travel stamps as well as some of the official passport stamps from Friends and Company’s passport club!


Wild Joys

Welcome to the jungle of Michelle McCarthy’s 2nd set of travel tags!  Michelle confessed that she used items from her children’s toy box for this design:


So creative!  And one of my favorite stamps is on the back:


Stamp Credit: Wordsworth

Seattle Skyline

Julie Imsland’s inspiration came from this great photo taken by her husband Mark.  With some tricky measuring Julie was able to get Mount Rainier to line up perfectly in the window of this shaker card!  The bead mix was odd to see apart from the card, but it worked splendidly with the colors in the photograph!


Two darling shrink plastic charms hang from the edge.  The Mount Rainer one is shown clearly, the Washington one is black and blends into the background of the photo. julieback And when I saw what Julie was up to I knew I had the perfect stamp for her to use on the backs of her tags!  It’s an old unmounted stamp, so I am not able to give it credit.

C’est La Vie

There is so much interest and texture in Kathi Hall’s tag design it takes awhile to let it all soak in!


Ultra thick embossing, stamped swirls, brads, hemp, collage images and colorful shrink plastic charms all add to the “charm” of Kathi’s playful design. kathiback

Take Me To Paris

Leola Johnston’s tags take us to the Eiffel Tower in Paris.  Layered papers and hand cut towers grace the front while whimsical fibers peek out from between them.leolafront

On the back a vibrant compass photo gets us thinking of the fun places we could go from there!


Mini Travel Journal

Melissa Ragsdill (aka “Lady Chat”) created cute little travel journals for her tags complete with a little baby pen: melissafront

The pages accordion out with space for miniature pictures, captions and travel notes.  The bull clip holds it all together.


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Damaged By Salt Water

When I got started on my travel tags I posted to my blog about my art process, with the full intent of coming back and sharing how the rest of the creating went.  Unfortunately I procrastinated until the last minute and totally forgot about that promise until just now!  But that’s okay, I didn’t do too much more and it’s easy to share what/how I did it.

The original post can be found here:

And this is where we left off:


In fact, my table still looks very much the same!  M.E.S.S.Y. Ü

Here is the seashell wave I made using Sure Tac glue, shells and clear micro beads:


When it was dry I took a bottle of alcohol ink and just squeezed drops over it all, letting the ink run wherever and however it wanted to.  Deciding that it needed more interest and dimension, I went back over it again just touching some of the shells with a drop of a darker ink color as well as some with a pearl wave

The acetate waves were applied to the tag with huge dimensional glue dots to raise them up off the page and make it “fat”.  I love that they are clear as well, so hardly show at all.

Once they were on the page I hit the edges of the acetate with a heat tool causing them to buckle and curl just a little.  I really liked the effect!  It really made the waves look more realistic!

waves Next I glued a fancy bead trim across the bottom of each tag:

bead trimBaby tags were cut with my Cricut to mimic the same shape as the big tag and embossed with one of my favorite verses in a sparkly glitter embossing powder:

little tagsThe backs papers were also cut with my Cricut and I spritzed with water to nearly soaking.  Then I sprinkled table salt all over them and let them dry completely.  Then I took my finger and rubbed at the paper until some of the fibers rubbed away and tore. To pull some of the purples in I spritzed some eggplant color wash randomly and stamped “Damaged by Salt Water” across the back. 

suzanneback Stamp Credit:  Nick Bantock

Here’s the final product of my travel tags for the fat book:

suzannefrontIt was a fun process that spanned a couple of months.  Being a social crafter I always found it easier to create when I had company over.  I am grateful to all of the gals who helped contribute thoughts, ideas and opinions and to Leola for helping me redo the little tags three times to get them perfect!  Ü


Diane Walter is sure to keep us all from getting lost with these spiffy compass pages!


It’s hard to show in the picture but the back of Diane’s tags look just like a real luggage tag with the cut out border and acetate over her info!  (Of course for privacy reasons I had to block out some of her information.)


Monday, September 13, 2010


Cathy Varner takes us on a little trip to “Oz” with her fun “down under” theme:


Are we there yet?  I so wish we were! cathyback

Sunday, September 12, 2010

You Are Here

This page was created by Annette Lanker.  Famous for her use of micro beads and bling Annette’s collage is wild and fun!


Whenever anyone does something interesting on the back of their page I like to show that too! annetteback