12 tags of 2016 – january…

2016TAGhappy 2016!  as we embark on a new year, many of us set new goals, plan new adventures, and like any creative person, seek new ideas (after all it’s those ideas that drive our passion for making things).  so as i sit here in my studio knowing it was the first day of the month when i usually post a new tag, i started looking back through my previous “12 tags”.  it’s hard to believe this will be the 10th year of doing “12 tags” on my blog?!  what started out as a way to share inspiration with “12 tags of christmas” back in 2007, turned into a monthly tag series in 2012, and the rest as they say, is history.   years of step by step photos, instructions, and videos shared on these tutorials reminded me of some favorite techniques that inspired me all over again.

i believe that when it comes to seeking new ideas, sometimes our creative focus is blurred by the products used like a specific stamp, die, embellishment or color of ink vs. the techniques being shared which is most important part of learning things.  as a designer it’s a balance between the excitement of new products and remembering to use what we already have.  so i’ve decided to change things up with the “12 tags of 2016 – technique remix”.

remix /rē’miks/: a piece of media which has been altered from its original state by adding, removing, and/or changing pieces of it.

i’m going to be taking you back into the archives of my blog to explore techniques that might be new discoveries for some, and re-discoveries for others.  each month i will be “remixing” two previous 12 tags techniques to show you an entirely different outcome using the same techniques.  i plan to highlight new ideas i may have, perhaps show a new product that might exist now to achieve a similar effect, or just helpful hints i’ve learned since i originally shared the technique.  my goal is to empower your creative way of thinking and remind you that inspiration is right at your fingertips.



  • surfaces: metal foil tape, #8 manila tag, black cardstock or tag
  • inks: distress embossing ink
  • paint: distress paint/black soot/picket fence
  • embossing powder: frosted crystal
  • embellishments: word band/observations, long fasteners, mini fasteners, game spinner, trimmings
  • adhesives: foam tape, glossy accents
  • tools: texture fade/typewriter set, stamp/CMS152 vintage things blueprint, vagabond, on the edge cutting pads, heat tool, scissors
  • misc: white chalk


1– for this tag i wanted to use the industrious technique on the background so i first chose my stamp to determine the space it would take up on the tag.  next i adhered the foil tape to the top and bottom portions of the tag that would be showing.

2– a trick for embossing part of the texture fade is using a smaller cutting pad.  i placed the top of the tag in the texture fade and used an “on the edge” cutting pad as my top cutting pad to only emboss the top section.

3– next i cut a slit through the top of my embossing folder (which i do to every folder) so i can slide the tag through the folder.  i used the “on the edge” cutting pad again to only emboss the bottom section this time.

4– following the technique i created the industrious finish to the taped areas – such a cool effect.


5– since i wanted to layer this image, i created the effect on two black tags (or you could use black cardstock).  i tore the edges on the main image, and cut out the area i wanted to layer from the second image.

6– to embellish i added a word band painted with picket fence distress paint and wiped off.  i added a game spinner to the center of the clock and some mini fasteners to the corners.

REMIXsee how inspiring it is to create an entirely different project using the same techniques?  i hope you’re ready to join me for another year of the “12 tags” series here on the blog, and let your creativity be reminded that when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change…t!m

congrats to the winners from the december 12 tags of 2015.  if you see your name (and it links to your tag), please email mario@timholtz.com to claim your prize…
1. Inkysplatters
2. Crooked Stamper
3. Super Stick Chick
4. Anita H
5. Diana
6. Katy Leitch
7. Joi S
8. Jody
9. Laura Vi
10. Nox
11. Stefania
12. Delphine

*be sure to check your local stores for these supplies, or click on the links below to purchase online from Simon Says Stamp with a discount of 10% off your purchase – use code: 10JANUARYTH

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105 Comments to “12 tags of 2016 – january…”

  1. Joi@RR says:

    What an incredible tag – very different and unique. Love the remix idea… there are so many techniques that I am constantly having to reread in my “Compendium” to remember!!!

    I was sooo very excited just to have completed all 12 tags and dear me… what a shock that I actually WON for my Dec. tag – thanks bunches and bunches Tim and Mario. I am so honored. Happy New Year to you both. Believing it to be your best year EVER. Hugs. j.

  2. Nannie of 4 Cuties says:


  3. Linda says:

    Keep inspiring Tim, I’d be lost without you!!

  4. RosieJ says:

    I was hoping you would be bringing back your old stamps and older techniques from way back again. You must have read my mind. Maybe you should call the tags “way back”. Mix the older stamps with new ones to see what inspiration you can come up with. Can hardly wait to see the tags for this year. It will be fun.

  5. monique says:

    Thank you for including the reviews. That certainly increases the likelihood I will try this and saves me tons of time!

  6. Susanne says:

    Great idea! Thanks for continue the 12 tags!

  7. Mary W says:

    Great new blog post – you have a unique way of looking at things that creates inspiration and giving us these new ideas will certainly create inspired new projects. Thanks for all you post AND all the great products you keep coming up with. Currently the heart lockets have caught my eye for the first time, have no idea why I didn’t notice them before but have them in my wishlist cart to get for lots of future products. You always come up with stuff I really need and use – before I know I need it. LOL

  8. monique says:

    Thank you for providing the review links! Huge time saver!

  9. SusanK says:

    I love the idea of a remix of techniques this year. Can’t wait to see the combinations you choose to inspire us!

  10. Brilliant brilliant idea, asi love to revisit old techniques and the whole remix is so stinking cool, and just fun to say!!! You are an angel to continue on inspiring us each month, as i know you are the busiest person i know. So thank you!!! I love this tag too! Love love love that metal,my favirite! And…wow! I cant believe i won! Thank you! We are all winners because you are continuing on. Congrats all around. And…i cant believe somebody, Rosie, has already made a tag!!! Actually i can, because you inspire us so much!!!!

  11. Donna Russell says:

    awesome tag and I love that you are going to revisit tec. from the past

  12. Gail Scott says:

    Congratulations to all of the winners – I hope to enter each month this year – hoping! Thanks for the inspiration – have a blessed week!

  13. Lois Skiathitis says:

    Very cool tag. What I love most is the way you do the step outs. You always explain things so we all can understand it. TFS! 😀

  14. Barbara Hahn says:

    fascinating idea – I look forward to this new idea. It will be fun looking back at earlier tags and seeing what develops.

  15. Connie says:

    oh, this resonates with me. I didn’t get to play much last year and was thinking that I would go back through your posts and play with older ideas to get my mojo running 🙂 Great minds 😀

  16. Charlotte C says:

    Love this one. Great start to the 2016 tags. Happy New Year.

  17. Lisa Imerman says:

    Love this! I an going to see what I have and what I need!

  18. Carol Watson says:

    It’s going to be another wonderful year….love the technique remix idea!

  19. Barb from kazoo says:

    I love this concept. What a great way to inspire folks. I’ve always taken away from your posts that it was ok to use what we had to be inspired, we didn’t need to do exactly what you do and you encourage using what we have. BUT that an be hard sometimes. I think learning how past work inspire you will help to understand the potential thought process and, in that, allow us (or at least me) to feel more confident about making my own interpretation. The first thing I had to learn was to set aside what I create and look at it with fresh eyes after a bit of time. I find I like them better than I do when I’m working on them. Take a risk and show them to a friend and sometimes I’m even impressed with myself!

    Looking forward to a great and creative new year.

    Thank you and all your team!

  20. Zoe Hillman says:

    I love this idea! I’m really excited! THANKS for doing another year of tags to inspire us all. Let the remixing begin. 🙂

  21. Lisa Leavitt says:

    super excited about the remix! idea!

  22. stampersuzz says:

    Tim thanks for the inspiration in 2015 and looking forward to the remix 2016! Love the industrial effect and the chalkboard and can’t wait to play with the ideas today!

  23. Irina Fonina says:

    I remember how I liked these techniques in prevous years and would love to try and mix them! Congratulations on the 10th year of tags and happy new year!

  24. Brilliant refresher! It’s so easy to forget so many techniques learned along the way and combining them in this way is such a great idea. Looking forward to more scrummy combos along the way x

  25. Stefanie says:

    Really loving the remix idea – and this first tag for 2016

  26. Wilma Blom says:

    Great way to start a new creative year! Thank you for the inspiration, love the tag and techniques.

  27. Rosetta Jenkins says:

    Love the clock which I have, of course :-). Brilliant idea about revisiting, rewinding and remixing previous tags. Just love it! Happy New Year to you and Mario!

  28. Rosie says:

    Happy New Year and thank you for the challenge. It’s every time a pleasure

  29. I have to admit to having doubts as to whether I could carry on with this years fun because I like to try and make the tags the same as yours thus buying the products used and building up my stash, but space has gotten the better of me. So how can I thank you for this ingenious idea of yours to remix ideas from over the years and also remix my mind into using what I have already. I’m in for the ride no matter how much extra I accumulate because this is going to fun.

  30. Marianne says:

    No matter what you’re doing. Whether you use new techniques or old, or that you combine them, you remain my greatest inspiration !!

  31. Hetty says:

    Happy New Year Tim and Maria and what a great start it is.Love your idea for this year and those techniques are super to startthis year. Can’twait to see all the fun mixes you are going to make. Do I play this already for 10 years? Ok, I missed the first year and I have been doing this for 9 years.All great!! Thankjs for all the inspiration and the new to come. 2016 is going to be another wonderful creative year!

  32. OH YEAH!!! LOVELOVELOVE where you’re going here!!!! Seems like we learn a technique then moooove on to another without much chance to practice more! BONUS: getting some of those oldie’ items we often THINK about using but get caught up in finding the new items to use. Absolutely right on w U on this & definitely (re.. ??) excited over it!!!!
    2nd Bonus would be letting others play ‘catch up’ on any prior tags they missed. I like it!!!! Hope ur holidays were great & CONGRATS on 10 yrs w Tim Tags!! I’ve been w U halfway- this will be my 5th yr & while my ChiefHubby has had to shell out…. he knows its kept me on my toes as well as gifts for others. #winwin

  33. butterfly says:

    Magical mash-up idea… What a brilliant way to remix the 12 tags. I’m so happy that we get to go on this monthly inspiration journey again this year, and what a fabulous monochrome metallic chalky treat to kick us off. Fantastic, thank you.
    Alison x

  34. Angele van Leeuwen says:

    Happy new year!
    It ís great to go back in time and products, not using only the new but also all the stash we all have gathered over the years – I’m often surprised when I open a box with goodies and am sure everybody knows that feeling!

  35. paula says:

    what a great idea…so many techniques from the archives that I know I could use a refresher course! Looking forward to another great year of 12 tags!!

  36. Rosann says:

    Very cool tag … yes I remember those … hum … NO … tomorrow… I’m so sleepy right now everything aches. I had to read it three times because I kept getting cross eyed… was a long day!
    Congrats to the winners … those were some cool tags ( fun to look at all of them … such an amazing community)!

  37. Vicki (aka - that crazy chick) says:

    i’m digging the mash up – 2016 tags are going to twice the fun allover again, again. 🙂

  38. Donna says:

    A very masculine tag with lots of strong features. The round clock in the middle adds a softness to an otherwise severe appearance. It will make a lovely addition to a mini album I am making for a male relative.

  39. Sharon Young says:

    Tim, what a great idea! Looking forward to seeing what you mix up in 2016. You have combined two of my favorite techniques for January. Just so cool!

  40. Gretchen says:

    Dig it! 🙂 Love the idea of mashing 2 tag ideas. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with. 🙂 Happy New Year!

  41. Tamera says:

    Thank you for revisiting some classics this year! I love the idea of combining two techniques! Yay! This is a great combo. I am determined to get this tag done this month!

  42. Lisa H says:

    I love your idea of remixing past techniques!

  43. Love your premise for this years 12 Tags, can’t wait to revisit some of your amazing techniques from years past. Love the amalgamation of industrious metal and chalkboard on January’s tag and so very happy that you will continue this wonderful tradition! Here’s to a wonderfully creative year!

  44. Awesome Tag to start off the new year. Happy New Year!! Karen.x

  45. Great concept for the tags this year! Loving the mix. Happy New Year!

  46. Kat says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed your first tag of the year.It was fun to read the steps and imagine my own card, being made using your techniques and my colors and individual subject ideas as well etc. I love both muted and bright colors with your brand of products .I like mixing old and new , as well as different designers in the same piece. We all make a great team,and I thank you for tweaking my brain, so quickly in the new year.
    ….It is a great start for me!

  47. Tamara says:

    This is going to be great!! So many of the “older” techniques are still new to me. Thanks for the added inspiration!

  48. Cim Allen says:

    Love the idea !! I’m loving the idea of revisiting techniques !!!

  49. Tona says:

    Fabulous tag & I love what you’ll be doing with the tags this year.

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