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Last year I had hopes of completing the Tim Holtz monthly tag challenge.  Towards the end of the year, I was just collecting ideas but had stopped even trying.  I ended up holding on to 2 ideas that I wanted to try.  Neither one has become a completed tag but I did play with the two techniques I wanted to try.

I should note that both techniques were the backgrounds to his tags.

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The first was a collage of scrapbook paper pieces that were covered with a crackle medium and then distressed with distress crayons.

Since I just wanted to play with the collage idea, I went with flowers from a garden catalog.

I’ve previously had some success with creating a crackle using glue that you paint over with acrylic paint while wet.  I had hoped that the paint wasn’t necessary but it seems like it must be because my glue did not crackle but it added a nice glaze to my collage.

I used oil pastels and the glue created a resist that gave the pastels a more crayon/sketchy look (it also allowed me to completely wipe away any pastel not where I wanted it).

Not sure I will repeat this particular experiment exactly but I did like the final result.

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The second technique involved stamping on burlap and using that for the background.  I have some burlap ribbon in red that I thought would be fun to play with.  However, I couldn’t get the black ink to be very dynamic on the fabric.  I went with stamping with bleach.  While it didn’t give me clear images, I loved the result.  I used a foam sponge brush to add bleach to areas not covered by the stamp.

Then I went about sewing the burlap onto the tag.  I did add some glue to hold the burlap but far enough from the edge that I wasn’t sewing through glue.

I took a piece of cross stitch plastic and used it to pre punch my holes for my hand stitching.  I thought hand stitching would look better but I probably should have used a more contrasting color for the thread.

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Here’s the back of my stitching:

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I love the final results for both tags.  I wish I had an idea to finish them but I don’t so they will go back into the tag pile until I decide to do something more than keep them as examples.

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For me, the most important part was playing with these ideas.  If I had a complete picture in mind, I most likely wouldn’t have felt like I could fiddle as much as I did with these.  I got to just play with the ideas and a lot of time that is what I love best about creating.

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