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Tutorial – Handmade Gift Tags

14 January 2010
tags:

Do you use those little sticky tags you can buy from the dollar store for Christmas gifts?  The ones with the “To” and “From” and a little picture?  So do I.  And I always go crazy when I run out of them because I hate having to use a little rectangle of wrapping paper that I fold in half and write my “To” and “From” on.  I just think it looks cheap and hurried – which it is, but that’s not the impression that I’d like to give.

{ Handmade Christmas tags, Heart of Light }

{ Handmade Christmas tags, Heart of Light }

So after reading Heart of Light for a few months, it occurred to me that I could make tags just like she does.   All I needed was a paper punch and some cute stamps and I’d be ready!  I already had ink on hand as I stamp our Christmas cards every year with three paw prints – one for each of our dogs.  {They need to sign the cards, too!}

Disclaimer: This is so NOT deserving of a tutorial, as it is pretty obvious what the steps should be, but I thought I’d start small.  Baby steps.  This is my first tutorial, so keep that in mind.  AND I apologize in advance for the poor image quality.  I got home just as the sun was going down, so I didn’t have much natural light to work with.  J got me a really sweet mini photo studio, though, so once I have that up and running, my photos {and you!} will benefit!

{ materials, Handmade Gift Tags }

{ materials, Handmade Gift Tags }

So, back to the tutorial!

{ Materials }

1. heavy-weight paper – I used 110 lb. paper in a cream color

2. stamps

3. stamp ink – I use “Dye-Based”; I think that’s actually the brand name.  It’s about $2 at Michael’s, but it’s pretty cheap so you have to be thorough with application

4. paper punch {tag shape} – you can buy these on ebay or in the craft stores. Martha Stewart makes one as well.

5. hole puncher – I use a three-ring punch though you only need one hole per tag

6. string or ribbon

7. pretty pen for addressing the tag

I took one of my 40% off coupons to Michaels and bought a paper puncher for about  $9 {$16 originally}.  I already had some card stock at home, so I got to punching.

{ tags paper puncher & 110 lb. cardstock }

{ tags paper puncher & 110 lb. cardstock }

{} I can get about 13 tags out of each piece of heavyweight cardstock. 

{} Then I use my three-ring hole punch to add one hole to the top tab of each tag.

{ hole puncher & card stock }

{ hole puncher & card stock }

{} Next I add my To/From stamp to one side of all the tags; I like to keep them tidy, so I typically align all the tags the same.

{ gift tags, aligned and stamped }

{ gift tags, aligned and stamped }

{} While I let this side dry, I cut small lengths of string {roughly eight inches} and tie each length in a knot at the end.  {I got this string at the thrift store with three other spools for about $2 on a 25% off day.}  These will be looped through the holes and then looped through themselves to create a loop for the tag.

{ string, cut and tied }

{ string, cut and tied }

{} Once the first stamp is dry, I flip over all the tags and stamp the backside {front side?} with a festive stamp.  I have a Happy Birthday stamp for birthdays, obviously, but I also have a Joy stamp that I use for the holidays and a tree stamp that could be used for whatever {graduation? Thinking of You?}.  {I bought all these stamps at Michael’s in their $1 stamp section at the front of the store.  Stamps can be EXPENSIVE but Michael’s offers an easy way around that.  The To/From stamp I bought on ebay because I wanted something plain and just wasn’t finding it in the $1 bin.}

{ stamps }

{ stamps }

{} Once that side is done drying, you’re done!  Simply loop the tag through its own loop, around the handles of a gift bag or around the sticky part of a ribbon base, and your gift is ready to be given.

{ finished tag }

{ finished tag }

These really personalize your gift and make the recipient feel like you put a bit more time into their gift.

I try to make about 100 of these at once which does take a while but I plant myself in front of a cheesy movie {Made of Honor, anyone?}, so that makes it even more fun!  I’d love to see what stamps you’d add.

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