Friday, July 8, 2011

A Tale of Two Tags

I've been hard at work (off-and-on, before and after vacation) on tags for my first tag swap.  I've participated in several match-box swaps (super fun!) but I've never done a tag swap before, and for some reason, I'm really nervous about it.  I guess I just want to be sure I'm up to snuff with all of these talented tag swappers!  I signed up for Karla's Birdsong Tag Swap, so the theme involves birds.  To be honest, birds aren't usually my "thing," so I was at a loss for what to do.

In the beginning, I found clip art of a vintage sheet music cover that I loved (thanks, Graphics Fairy!)  I played around with paper, stamps, and trims, and decided that the tag would look something like this:

But then I had second thoughts.....  I really wanted to stitch something -- add a  hand-stitched element to the tags, preferably using some of the ridiculously large lace stash that is ever-growing around here.  But what to stitch?  I decided to try to create a hand-stitched nest out of lace and trims.  I was pretty excited about this idea!  So I got out a few special trims, and I stitched and stitched until I had...... a big flat flower.

Ugh! Nothing nest-like about it.  I started over.  This time, I used less lace, added some tulle and a few strands of perle cotton embroidery floss:

Still kind of flower-like, but better, I think.  I glued a few vintage rosary beads into the center for "eggs."

Once the nests were done (or, almost done -- I've got 7 nests to finish!), I laid out the paper and trims again, and decided on this design:

But in keeping with the theme of over-thinking these tags, I've decided that teal-blue paper is too dark (sigh), so now I'm thinking of switching it out with a lighter blue, for a look kind of like this:

Anyway, this has been a fun project -- it's nice to be creating again.   I'm not sure why I've been so fickle and nervous about this little project!  But the tags have to be in the mail Monday, so I've got to finish them all this weekend.  I'll post more pics when they're all done.  Wish me luck!  :)


  1. hi alison,

    all of your ideas are so pretty. such a fun post to read to follow your process. i am sure the final tags will be adored by all!

    happy weekend ~


  2. these are maverlous... thanks for sharing

  3. I'm in the Bird Song swap, too. I always enjoy learning about an artist's process. This was fun to read. I often start out 1 way, after musing it over in head for some time, but end up with something quite different. Little bits and scraps left over from previous crafts, too precious to throw away, but too small to put away, scattered around my work table, are pressed into service.


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