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Halloween Tags & Treat Bags!

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Card Projects by Sharon M. Reinhart

As you can see by the title, this CardMaker update is all about Halloween tags and treat bags, with just a little twist -- they have been designed with the adults in mind! Yes, kids at heart need a few treats as well. Seriously, though, these tags and treat bags are suitable for any age! Of course, they also don't have to be filled with candy. For those without a sweet tooth there are many different items for kids and adults that can be used to fill treat bags, from bookmarks and pens and pencils to individual flavored-tea bags and hot-chocolate packets. Now that we have figured out what will be on the inside, let's take a look at the outside!

Tags truly are versatile and one of my favorite items to create. They can be used for the obvious -- to state a recipient and the person giving the gift -- but, they also have a decorative aspect to them and can be used on cards, gift bags, boxes or even as a decorative element for an event. Banners are often used to decorate an event or celebration, and tags are the perfect item with which to create a wonderful banner. Simply create multiple tags and then attach them to a ribbon or string. Another fun idea is to attach the tags to a wreath form. It's a wonderful way to decorate for the different seasons or holidays! The other thing to keep in mind is that if Halloween is not something that you regularly decorate for, these tags can be switched up for almost any season or event simply by changing the colors and sentiments.

I have used one of my favorite die templates to make the large tags. This die is the Tim Holtz Alterations Tag & Bookplates die by Sizzix. As it is a steel rule die, it will cut a few cardstock tags at once and is capable of cutting a variety of materials and thicknesses such as chipboard, felt and cork, to name a few. If you do not have access to this template, try using a large shipping tag or cut a tag shape by hand.

Project 1 makes use of this die for the large purple tag and the orange bookplate. Another Tim Holtz die template that was used is the rosette. This tag has a definite Halloween feel to it which was accomplished by using the combination of the colors black, purple and orange. The stamped "31" further reflects Halloween with the date. Although the paper used is not a Halloween-specific paper, the damask print lends itself well to the overall theme. A couple of adhesive rhinestones and some printed ribbon is the perfect finish for this tag.

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As stated previously, it is easy to switch up the tag to a different season. For a Christmas tag this same design could be re-created with the colors red, green and white, and instead of the black damask print try using a damask print in red, or even a holly print would work wonderfully. Instead of the numbers "31" use "25" for the date of Christmas.

Project 2 brings in a few more techniques. Adding texture with the use of an embossing folder, thread-wrapping and a tea bag-folded medallion helps to bring this creation to life! Using a variety of textures and prints adds to the Halloween feel in this tag. The silver thread is wrapped using a technique called spirelli, where the thread is wrapped around a shape that has peaks and valleys. The thread is run through a valley and wrapped around; then a number of valleys are skipped, in this case seven, and then the thread is placed through the next valley in the sequence. For this piece, the thread wrapping is continued until two threads are in each valley. The tea bag-folded medallion starts with a simple circle fold and one progression fold, folding the top layers to meet in the center. I encourage you to take a look at my Fabulous Paper Folds online class/DVD for further in-depth information on tea-bag folding. Another wonderful element on this tag is the washi-tape border that frames each side of the printed paper. Washi tape is available in a vast assortment of prints and colors, and is also one of the easiest materials to use. To finish this tag simply add a stamped banner and greeting. Attach the tag to the treat bag with ribbon, paper clips, staples or adhesive.

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Last but not least, Project 3, combines texture and dimension with a few different elements such as the burlap tag and the embossed metal tag sentiment. Texture is brought into this project by embossing the treat bag rather than the tag itself. The teabag-folded medallion adds another element of texture. It was created with a basic circle fold and a progression fold, folding the top curved layer of the circle back on itself. The hand-embossed metal tag provides even more texture and visual interest. To emboss a sentiment on lightweight metal, print out the desired words onto paper and place on top of the metal. Place the layered metal/paper on a foam pad and lightly trace the words using a ball-style stylus or even a wooden cuticle stick. Add some light stippling onto the metal with the stylus. For further emphasis of the words, add acrylic paint and then sand or wipe off the excess, or use a permanent marker to accent the words.

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This is just a small sampling of the type of tags and bags that can be created. As you can see, a variety of techniques, materials and tools have been used in order to make these Halloween tags and treat bags. So think about your favorite techniques and tools, and don't forget to check your scrap bin because scraps are the perfect resource for creating one-of-a-kind tags. I hope you have been inspired to create something wonderful today!

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