Welcome to my first Tuesday Tutorial! I am so excited about doing this weekly feature and hope that it will be as fun and informative to you! I love the tag and technique I am sharing this week. It is a long tutorial with tons of photos. Along the way if you need a closer look, just click on the photo for a pop up of a larger view. As always, the supply list of what I used is included at the bottom of the post.
I love working with muslin fabric. I love that it is so versatile and inexpensive. It is so easy to add color to with just about any ink, mist, paint, or stain you might have. Today I want to share an easy way to add color using Tim Holtz’s Distress Stains.
Begin with a scrap of beige or white muslin. I usually make color a piece much larger than my project so that I will have leftovers for future projects. You can leave it smooth and flat or wad it up to add some wrinkles. Adding color over the wrinkles will create some variations in the application making lighter and darker areas as you brush the color on.
Brush assorted Distress Stain colors onto the fabric using the built in applicator. I usually work in strips, but you could do random patches, criss cross, etc. You can use any assortment of colors. In this example I used greens and blues and went for a more monochromatic color scheme. I used Picket Fence last and made swipes over the other colors. The Picket Fence created some softer color variations and blending. If you like the effect at this point, you could stop here or . . .
Mist the fabric with water. Adding water to the mix will cause the stains to soften and blend. Distress products are reactive to water so adding water will create some intresting color washed effects. If you are happy with the look you have you could stop. . .
wad the fabric into a tight ball to add more wrinkles and to allow the fabric to touch other areas of itself and let the color bleed onto other areas.
Blot the fabric with a dry cloth (I keep cloth diapers in my studio to use as studio rags) to help remove excess moisture.
The fabric now has very crisp wrinkles. If this is the look I want, I will let it air dry. It will dry with a somewhat stiff texture.
If I am in a hurry or if I want as softer look and feel to my fabric, I dry it with my heat gun.
Before using the finished fabric, turn it over and look at the back. A good amount of color will have bled through creating a nice mix of color and original fabric color. I often use the back side because of the softer finished look.
I think this piece of fabric really demonstrates the difference between the front and back of the fabrics and how different and usable they both are.
To make a fabric covered tag, cut a piece of the dyed fabric and a piece of cotton batting slightly larger than the size of your tag.
Stamp an image on your fabric using Archival Ink.
Apply glue stick to the surface of your tag. (Therm O Web’s Super Stick is a great glue for this. It is a really versatile glue stick that is made for both paper and fabric applications. It can be used on fabric to tack things in place for sewing and washes out when the item is laundered. I love that I can sew through it and not gum or ick up my sewing machine needle.)
Apply the piece of cotton batting to the top of the tag.
Apply more glue stick to the top of the batting. Place the fabric, stamped side up on top of the batting.
Turn the assembled tag over and trim the edges of the fabric and batting to match the tag. I trimmed mine with pinking shears, leaving the fabric layers slightly larger than the tag.
Machine stitch around the edges of the tag to secure the fabric layers to the tag. In place of machine stitching, hand stitching or brads and each corner would work as well. To add a bit of subtle shimmer, mist the surface of the tag with Biscotti Perfect Pearls Mist. Use a heat tool to dry the mist.
Dab ink onto a 5-6″ piece of flat lace (mine is vintage) using an ink applicator tool. Brush the edges of the fabric and batting with the ink as well.
Apply a line of glue stick to the front of the tag. You can’t see it in the photo, but my line goes from the left side edge to right side edge, directly through the center of the circle (over the O.N.T.).
Lay the ribbon over the glue. Pinch and bunch up the lace to create ruffles. The glue from the glue stick will help hold the lace and ruffles in place.
Machine stitch through the lace to secure it permanently.
Stamp the center area of the large Clark’s stamp on a scrap of Grunge Paper. Cut the center circle design out. Brush Distress Ink over the piece. Use a Cut n’ Dry Pen Nib to pick up color from an ink pad to add color inside the letters.
Mist over the piece with Perfect Pearls Mist.
If you apply more mist than you prefer, a quick spritz of water and a blot with a towel will help remove excess mist. In my example, my mist covered my blue letters a bit more than I wanted. I was able to put a mist of water in just the letter area and was able to lighten the mist in the center.
Apply Distress Ink to the edges of the round piece.
Apply adhesive foam squares to the center back of the round piece.
Place the round stamped piece on the tag, lining it up to match the design of the fabric.
Pierce two sets of holes (for stitching an X) on each side of the circle piece where it lays over the lace.
Thread a needle with 2-3 strands of embroidery floss. Tab Distress Ink with an ink applicator tool onto the floss to give it a vintage look.
Make a running stitch with the embroidery floss through the center of the lace. Make two X stitches in the pierced holes. On my example, I left the beginning thread on the right hanging loose on the right and left the remaining thread in the needle on the left, which I pierced through the fabric.
Stamp the scissor stamp on a piece of manila cardstock. Color the image with markers and cut out. Stamp of over the cut out scissors with embossing ink. Cover with clear embossing powder. Heat the powder covered scissors to melt the embossing powder. Embossing the scissors not only makes them shiny but also gives them some extra “body”, making them more durable to stand up to any handling of the finished tag.
Gently lift the foam squares on the back of the circle from the fabric and lace behind it. Slip the scissors behind the circle between the foam squares and the lace and fabric. Press the circle and foam back down. I photographed and made this tag as I went without much of a plan. When I got to this point it looked a little naked which led me to add the scissors. If I were making it again, I would add the scissors before the circle.
The final touch I added was to include a small button with floss at the bottom of the tag where there was a round part in the lower border design and a large silver eyelet to the tag opening.
- paper- Inkssentials #8 Manila Tag; Tim Holtz Idea-ology Grunge Paper
- stamps- Wendy Vecchi Studio 490 Art By Hand
- ink- Tim Holtz Distress Ink: Vintage Photo, Broken China, Scattered Straw; Tim Holtz Distress Embossing Powder; Ranger Coffee Archival
- stains- Tim Holtz Distress Stains: Faded Jeans, Picket Fence, Tumbled Glass, Broken China, Bundled Sage, and Weathered Wood
- mists- Perfect Pearls Mists: Biscotti and Bronze
- embossing powder- Ranger Ink Clear Embossing Powder
- markers- Letraset Promarkers: Ice Grey 1, Ice Grey 5, and Warm Grey 5
- fibers- Bazzill Basics In Stitchz floss White; Vintage Lace
- fabric- Cotton Muslin; Cotton Batting
- tools- Ranger Ink Blending Tool, Craft It Heat Tool, Craft Sheet; Fiskars Pinking Shears; Bazzill Basics Paper InStitchz Foam Mat and Piercer; sewing needle (I did not use the larger embroidery needle that comes with the floss, I used a thinner sewing needle)
- adhesives- Therm O Web Super Stick and 3D Foam Squares
- misc.- Inkssentials Cut n Dry Pen Nib