Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Mini Album Makers March Challenge

The Mini Album Makers Challenge will feature a monthly challenge, with each Design Team Member posting a link to a mini album tutorial, tip, or trick on the 1st of each month.  Then, one team member will post a full tutorial on the 14th of each month! (My BIG tutorial month has changed from February to April.) In addition, there will be guest makers each month! The team will pick our FAVORITE project to be the next GUEST MAKER!

Click HERE for the March Challenge! You will have all month to make a NEW project and enter the challenge for a chance to win a prize. (See prize details at the end of the post.) Winners will be posted on the 7th of each month on the Mini Album Makers Blog.

One of the most versatile, simple, fun, and interesting styles of mini album to create is...a tag mini album! I love decorating tags to use as gift packaging, as book marks, as album inserts, and more. But, creating a tag mini is pure joy!
There are as many ways to make a tag album as there are styles and sizes of tags. The most basic way to make this style of mini is to simply decorate some tags and thread a D-ring or some ribbon through the holes in the top of the tag! Presto! Tag mini album! 
You can decorate your tags as much or as little as you wish. you can use any size tags you wish. The choices are limited only by your imagination!  

I have oodles of tags in my stash. I have many sizes, many styles, and many colors. I also have tag dies and tag cut files. I love tags! But,for this project, I decided I was only going to use "throw away" tags and scraps! As a prolific crafter and design team member, I have so many left overs! It is hard to use up everything. Plus, I hate to throw perfectly good things away!
I found this stack of tags in a bin. These are all Graphic 45 kraft tags, either the Large or Regular size. They have all been damaged in some way. Most were "mistakes" from other projects. However, as you can see, none are damaged beyond repair. I salvaged six (6) tags for this project.
I decided to trim the bottom off the tags to make them various lengths. One of the Large tags had an ink blob on the back, but was otherwise in good shape. I started with that as my largest size, 8 3/4" long. I trimmed the rest of the tags to be between 3/4" and 1" shorter than each previous tag. All of the tags are 3 7/8" wide. 

Once I had all the tags trimmed, I used a corner rounder to round the bottom edges. 
My next step was to pick a theme. I remembered having this bin of Graphic 45 Cityscapes paper. I had used this to create some projects for G45 a while ago, but had not really used it since. I had so many scraps and bits left over. I pulled all the scraps out and set to work. I did not cut into any full sheets of paper!
I trimmed paper to fit the tags, rounded all four corners, and inked the edges. I cut two of each size listed below:
7 7/8" x 3 3/4"
5 5/8" x 3 3/4" 
4 5/8" x 3 3/4" 
3 3/4" x 3 3/4" 
3 1/8" x 3 3/4" 
2 3/8" x 3 3/4" 
I attached paper to the front of each tag, making sure I was pleased with the print arrangement. 
I flipped the tags over and added paper to the back.
Since I was in a "use it up" mood, I decided to work out of my scrap basket. This is a basket I keep on my desk where I throw odds and ends at the end of a project. Sometimes, after I clean up, I find a stray flower or button, so I toss it in this basket. There are times, I cut too many die cuts, so I toss them in the basket, too. This basket fills up quickly!  

I also have projects that have lived out their natural lives, and I want to salvage items off them before the projects go into the trash. {I know, but it happens!} I pull off things that are usable, such as metal items, flowers, and so forth. (Face it, Tim Holtz products are EXPENSIVE. Those babies are getting yanked off and re-used!)
I sorted through the bits and pulled out everything that I though would work for this project. This is what I found. Lots of flowers, some metal bits, a couple of die cut doilies, a bit of ribbon, a few D-rings (lucky find), an a few other odds and ends.
I pulled out some items from the paper scraps pile and started to work on the tags. It was fun to see how I could use all this left-over "junk" to make something pretty! 
 I ended up with a really fun travel-themed tag set, with a steampunk flair!
I decorated both sides of the tags. I was going to keep the back of each tag empty to be able to add photos. But then I thought, who am I kidding?! I am never going to actually put photos on the tags. It is more likely that I will use them for adding to gift bags or something!

Let's take a closer look at each tag!
I added a postage image, a die cut word, a few flowers, a tiny light bulb, and a Graphic 45 clock key. I was awesome to find a bunch of black, grey, and ivory flowers in the bin! 
The back of the first tag just has an image cut from the paper. 
For the second tag I added more images from the paper, plus a flower and a button. The button already had twine tied through the holes and was the perfect color. 
The back of this tag just has some of the postage images. This paper collection has postage stamps in various sizes!
I think this tag is my favorite! I wrapped one of the die cut doilies around the edge of the tag, then added a postage image cut from the paper. The tiny clothes pins were tan, but I colorized them with some ink.
One doily worked for both sides of the tag by wrapping it around the edge! I added this metal pocket watch and a phrase cut from the paper. Why was this great metal piece languishing in the odds and ends bin?!
For this tag, I added another tag to the front! I also added more postage, a flower, and a metal faucet. The faucet had a HUGE blob of hot glue attached to the back. I managed to pry that off, and...TA DA...good as new! 
The back of this tag has another image from the paper. Plus I found these Asian coins and charms in the bin. Again, super find!  
This is the one tag I kept plain for a photo. I did, honest! I added an image, a flower, and a clip. The clip had a bit of twine tied to it, and the knot was glued, so I just kept the twine on there!
For the back of this tag, I added the metal frame, which had a huge blob of goop on the lower left corner. I could not get it off, so...I just glued stuff over the top of that area! 
I found these altered die cut shapes and flowers to add to the metal frame. The bee has gold ink on it. The gears have rusty embossing powder on them. They must have been left over from a mixed media project. 
I kept this tag simple with just one of the ephemera cards and a metal clock. Again, how does this great metal stuff end up in the junk bin?! 
I used another doily for this tag, plus a small tag cut from the paper. And, oddly there was a "39" bingo tile in the bin. Which is hilarious because I always say I am age 39 when people ask me! {I am NOT 39...but...I could be...or I could play a 39 year old on TV...}
After I decorated all the tags, I added a metal D-ring through the holes at the top and then tied on the bit of dark grey ribbon I found in the junk bin! And there you have a perfectly amazing "junk and trash" tag mini album! 

Thanks for joining me today! I hope that this will inspire you to dig into your scraps and left-overs! You never know what you can make!

Below is a full list of the Design Team, with links to their blogs! Make sure to visit them and give them some bloggy love!

Alison Bomber (taking a break)
Gloria Stengel (you are here)

Our Prize Sponsor this month is....

The fabulous prize this month is...

Full Set of Baked Texture Embossing Powders

Our challenge follows a few simple rules:
Any Handmade Book Goes.  Enter any form of handmade mini albums, scrapbooks, journals, and book arts. Our focus is on completed works, so no layouts or journal spreads that are not part of a complete handmade book project. You do not have to provide a tutorial, but we wish you would. Feel free to use one of the DT tutorials to make your project and give proper credit where due. No back links allowed (this means your project must be first seen on social media between March 1st and March 31st, 2018).  Combine with any other challenges as applicable. No limit on entries. Share the love by visiting and commenting on other entries. Please become a follower. That's it - have fun! Click HERE to enter your project!

Come back on  April 1st for a new set of tutorials from the team! 

Printed paper: Graphic 45 Cityscapes (retired)

Tags: Graphic 45 Large and Regular Kraft tags
Embellishments: various
Adhesive: Scor-tape, ATG tape, white glue, hot glue


  1. Simply gorgeous! Love all the details and embellishments on each tag!

  2. Gloria, I have been itching to make a tag album and this has hit all of my happy buttons! :) I totally love that you saved these tags and the cascading effect and beautiful embellishments. A winner indeed! Hugs, Autumn

  3. I just LOVE your tag book Gloria, it is such a great idea to use up bits and pieces along with beautiful papers (and they are so beautiful!). The waterfall shape adds so much interest and makes me want to reach out and touch it so I can look at each 'page'in detail... Stunning work! Hugs, Anne xx

  4. How inspiring Gloria, I have so many of these Graphic 45 tags that I have been saving because they are just too good to use on their own.
    Fabulous idea to attach trinkets and treasures, you have me thinking ahead to Christmas now and how much time would be saved if I started a Tag book just like this!
    Thank you for the inspiration and sharing your beautiful creation.
    Creative wishes Tracey XX

  5. A wonderful little mini Glora and wow, what a super collection of tags!!

  6. I have tons of tags and tons of scraps. I'm so inspired by your mini. Thank you!

  7. Your tag book is precious Gloria, each single tag a beauty in tiself! Gorgeous!
    oxo Susi

  8. Fabulous decoration and what a great design, thanks so much for sharing your ideas! Deb xo