Thursday, December 6, 2012

Gift Tags for Dummies

Those of you who are alumni of Tracey Clark's Picture the Holidays classes will remember this idea. It is, sad to say, not original to me but I'm going to pass it along with some easy ideas for those of you who are, like me, not overly "crafty".

When I first read the prompt encouraging us to use our photos to make gift tags, I thought, "You've got to be kidding! Who has time for that!"  But as I watched with fascination what others were doing, I became intrigued.

My first edition of custam gift tags was pretty rough; last year was an improvement but still didn't satisfy me. Fast forward to this year. What has evolved is an easy-peasy way to make custom gift tags using photos, or sketches, or whatever you wish.

Using my photo editing software and printer, I designed the tags. After borrowing my granddaughter's glue stick, I found some matte paper (61 lb., 11 mil thick) and ribbons and set about creating my gift tags for this year. There are a gazillion ways you could do this but I wanted to keep it simple. You can print the photos any size you want, making them whatever shape you wish. You may add the "to" "from" business right on the photos or tags with the text tool or handprint it. After punching a hole in the corner, I looped a ribbon through the hole and the tags are now ready to tie onto the larger bows on the packages.

Those of you who are scrappers (I am not) could use scrapping paper and mount the tags to embellish them a bit. I used wrapping paper mounted onto a 4" x 6" unruled index card which I trimmed to fit the photo. A word of caution: If you use wrapping paper, be sure to apply the glue stick to the index card as the wrapping paper is thin and hard to handle. (Also a baby wipe does a fine job of cleaning up stray glue specks.)

That's it. Easy-peasy. And believe me ... if I can do this ... you can do it. Once you get started you'll think of a gazillion fun things to do. But if you're pressed for time, stick do my easy-as-pie version for an alternative to packaged gift tags.

There's a lot going on at FOL this month so don't miss out on the fun. In addition to the December Focus photos for our Flickr page, be sure to click down the page to the discussion and add your favorite recipe. I'm going to be adding mine and I look forward to seeing yours.


Kim Stevens said...

Love this Dotti!! When the kids were younger and before my photography days, I used to hand stencil all my wrapping paper on brown paper. Even made one look like leather . . . Oh, I'm going to have to do that again only this time with your gift tags idea too.

Deanna said...

I love making gift tags and wrapping my packages in different ways. Your gift tags are really special and I know that those that receive them will love them. I also used Tracey's idea of making table place tags with my photos for the holidays.

terriporter said...

Loved that exercise in Picture the Holidays and have used it since. I know people who receive them love them, so it's worth a little bit of extra time to create them. I used ready-made white tags that I got at Michael's and cut my photo to fit and glued it on one side. I handwrote the "to" and "from" on the back and strung ribbon through the hole at the top to tie them on. I think I have a photo from last year when I did them and will post it in the Flickr gallery. I'll bet Campbell loves getting a present that has her photo on it!

Claudia@DipityRoad said...

Loved your examples! For years I hand made each tag and they have now (yah shows how old I am) they have become cute treasures that have gone on trees! :)

Another gift take idea was to take old photos of my kids and simply put them on the gifts ... easy for little ones being Christmas elves to deliver to the person (especially if they cant read)

Hugs! Great idea.


heyjudephotography said...

These tags are so beautiful, and how special each person will feel when they receive such a tag! It looks like even the most "un-crafty" people, hmmmmmm, well ME I mean! would be able to do this! Thanks for sharing!

Dotti said...

Kim - This sounds so fabulous! Do take pictures to share - I'd love to see them!

Dotti said...

Oooh - I'd forgotten the place tag idea. Thanks for the reminder! I think I'll do that for our Christmas Eve Tea ... for all 5 of us.

Dotti said...

The first year I found little white tags at a national office supply store and used those. The tags were an odd size so it was really hard to make them look good ... at least that's what the perfectionist in me says. I'd love to see yours.

Dotti said...

Love the idea of using "used" tags on the tree! I'll suggest that. And the idea about old photos is cool, too. I wish I'd thought of that in the past couple of year but since Campbell has started reading and tries to read everything in sight. I'm sure she'll be the official tag reader this year, a privilege that seems to fall to the youngest in the group by tradition.

Dotti said...

Judy - You can do this. I promise!!


heyjudephotography said...

I think maybe I can! I actually went the really easy peasy route and purchased a tag shaped punch in Michaels Craft store. I am going to punch out some of my more abstract bokeh-y shots to make tags with the punch.

Linda said...

Your tags are so pretty! Thanks for all the great suggestions how make them when you are not a scrapper! (I am not!) Another thing to add to my "to-do" list! I made my own Christmas cards and gift tags for the first time last year. I was breaking my arm patting myself on the back just waiting for the accolades. Well, back to reality! The cards and tags were tossed aside as the gifts were ripped open! Not a word or comment! I don't think anyone even noticed! But I'm not discouraged! Just means I have to take it up a notch this year!


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