As I started thinking about creating my version of Tim Holtz's 12 Tags of 2013 for September, I knew I was going to have to be a little more creative than usual. Tim's techniques for this month's tag (you can see all of the details here on his blog) involves his new line of layering stencils. I have not been able to lay my hands on these wonderful stencils yet; so, I had to look through my stash and see what I had that might work. I laid out the very few The Crafters Workshop stencils and the one Heidi Swapp stencil that I own. I thought ... "I can work with this."
Next question ... theme for my tag? I had planned to do a Chiari Awareness ribbon tag (the ribbon color is purple) this month and thus recently purchased Seedless Preserves Distress Stain. Oh! I love this color!!! I started playing around with different backgrounds using Seedless Preserves with other Distress Stain colors. I came up with this cool combination of Seedless Preserves, Peeled Paint, Spiced Marmalade and Salty Ocean. Immediately, I knew it would be perfect for a Halloween tag. Hmm ... how do I take the limited stencils that I have and make a Halloween tag? Definitely calls for double dose of creativity.
I started my stenciling with the stars on Heidi Swapp's Confetti stenciling. I didn't have any embossing paste (another item at the top of my wish list), so I used some Texture Magic Dimensional Paint with my stencil. After giving my stars a quick hit with the heat tool, I went on to my next stencil layer. I grabbed a 12 X 12 TCW stencil that has a variety of clock faces on it. When I saw this, I thought about the "witching hour" of midnight when all of the spooky monsters come out. Ah ha! I had the theme for my tag. I took some Black Soot Distress Paint on a clean blending tool foam pad and lightly pounced the paint on my stencil (building up color intensity with repeated applications using an almost dry foam pad to keep the paint from bleeding under the stencil ).
Three layers of stenciling behind me (and yes, I went through at least 20 tags to get a finished product that didn't get smeared before it dried or bled through or just looked wrong) and now I was ready for that wonderful stain combination. After drying the stains with my heat tool, I added some details to my stenciled images with my Distress Markers, an archival quality black pen, and a fluorescent orange acid-free gel pen (to bring out the numbers on my clock-face).
I knew I wanted to add another stencil layer. Originally, I thought I would add some stenciled tree branches with Distress Ink; but, my eyes fell on my TCW flame stencil and a light bulb went off! I could use the flame stencil to make ghosts on my tag. I grabbed my Picket Fence Distress Marker and water brush and began tracing some of the flames on my tag with this semitransparent white pigment ink. I used the water brush to get the flame "ghost" images even more transparent and added "eyes" with a Black Soot Distress Marker. The ghosts seemed to float up from bottom of the tag over top of all the other images. Pretty cool!
We finally come to one of my favorite parts of this tag. As I started to add embellishments, I remembered that I had some of the Tim's enamel number tags and one of them had a 31 on it. I looked through my brads and found some that had green tops. Fun! When I attached the tag, those brads reminded me of eyes. I took a alcohol ink pen and added the cat eye vertical pupils. Very creepy looking enamel tag, if I do say so myself. The clock hand is a metal arrow that I colored with alcohol ink pens and gave a Glossy Accents topcoat. I added some Making Memories Halloween word stickers and gave Mr Skull a mustache "costume".
The tag was topped off with a crinkle ribbon that I stained with my background tag colors and then stenciled with the Heidi Swapp Confetti stars in Black Soot Distress Paint. I added a smoky glass bauble for a little sparkle.
I'm going to leave you with one more shot of the entire tag. My version of Tim's September tag went in a little different direction than his original make. However, I really like it. The colors are so fun and I enjoyed the creative journey that I went on with this tag. Thanks for joining me on this little trip :) -- Mary Elizabeth