it’s day 7 – and i’m in heaven…

Tag7_3 "rusty noel" – tim holtz 2007
craft sheet (ranger)
heat tool (ranger)
clear embossing powder (ranger)
distress inks: fired brick, shabby shutters, vintage photo, black soot (ranger)
ink blending tool & foam (ranger)
stickles (ranger)
stamp set (stampers anonymous)
tag and embellishments


step 1: apply shabby shutters distress ink to tag by going direct to paper (DTP) and simply rubbing the pad on the tag.  do this until the entire tag is covered in ink. (*tip: i like working with a lighter color distress ink for this technique to provide the most contrast)


step 2: apply clear embossing powder over the entire tag and remove excess and place back in the jar- see it really does work as an embossing ink! (*tip: i would suggest using using regular clear embossing powder for this particular technique, i’ve had the best results with it)


step 3: holding the powdered tag over a trash can (or you’ll make a serious mess), FLICK the back of the tag.  yes, be a flicker and flick the back of the tag HARD!  you should see some of the embossing powder fly off into the trash can.  if you feel the need to flick again – go for it. (*tip: it is important that some of the powder does fall off so don’t be a softy here…)


step 4: emboss the tag with your heat tool until the powder looks like "orange peel". (*tip: be sure you don’t over-emboss this!  when it turns shiny and glossy it’s melted – move on.  too many times people want to go over their embossing "just to make sure".  trust me, if it’s shiny, it’s embossed.)


step 5: let the tag cool for a minute and then apply vintage photo distress ink over the embossed tag by once again going direct to paper.


step 6: using your ink blending tool & foam, press the ink down into the recessed areas of the embossed tag to create the look of "distressed enamel" and wipe off any excess ink with a pepr towel. (*tip: when you flicked the powdered tag before embossing it, some of the embossing powder flew off, so when embossed it left areas of the tag exposed.  inking with brown stained the exposed areas.)


step 7: now that our background is done, we are going to stamp our image with multiple colors of distress ink – that’s right, all on one stamp, all at one time!  of course you could always create a custom stamp pad like we did on day 4, but this is something you can do if you only want to stamp the image once.  begin with the lightest color of distress ink and using the CORNER of the ink pad only, ink the areas of the stamp you want that color.


step 8: next continue to the next darker color and ink that section of the image as well – remember we are only using the CORNER of the ink pad to color the areas. (*tip: if you happen to ink over another color, not to worry it is impossible to contaminate a darker color distress ink pad with a lighter color!)


step 9: once you’re finished inking all of your colors on your stamp and your stamp is completely inked and wet, stamp it on to another tag and cover it with clear embossing powder. (*tip: i don’t suggest stamping on to the "enameled" background, the surface is too bumpy and the image doesn’t show as well).


step 10: heat emboss the image with a heat tool.  remember distress is an embossing ink – how cool to be able to stamp it and emboss it with everything colored. (*tip: if the light bulb is going off – it should, yes this means that if you created a custom stamp pad with distress ink – day 4 again, then you could stamp and emboss your image).


step 11: ink noel image with vintage photo distress ink using ink blending tool & foam. (*tip: because you embossed your image first, it will now resist the top layer of distress – remember day 2 technique.  it all comes together doesn’t it?)


step 12: trim image to fit tag, mat with cardstock and embellish.


*check out these other color combos! (*from left to right: weathered wood, broken china, fired brick, peeled paint)

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542 Comments to “it’s day 7 – and i’m in heaven…”

    YES A NOEL STAMP πŸ™‚ you are making me a very poor stamper this christmas…
    But I will be rich om stamps;-)
    Thanks again,and again πŸ™‚
    Love Anna-Lena

  2. TammyM says:

    This has got to be my favorite one so far! This is just stunning! I love the colors in the stamp – it is just beautiful – what can I say?? Besides – “Please put me at the top of the list for this one?? PLEASE!!”” πŸ˜‰

  3. lisa says:

    I have a day off from work and I am going to make tags today! Thanks again for sharing all the wonderful techniques.

  4. Tracey M. says:

    Thanks for taking the time to give us such detailed instructions. I can hardly wait to try these techniques myself.
    It’s supposed to snow here tomorrow so I should probably stay off the roads don’t you think? Sounds like a perfect excuse to turn on some Christmas music, start a fire and make some tags.

  5. Laure Janus says:

    Tim, you are truly the stamp and embossing KING. I love how you make it look like it took hours but in reality, just minutes…I’m a total instant gratification kinda chick, so your techniques are shouting my name. Thanks ever so AGAIN!

  6. Penny says:

    Brilliant! When are you coming back to the UK?

  7. Lauren B says:

    Stunning!! You do such amazing work. I love how you used the clear embossing powder on this tag. I’ll have to try that technique soon.

  8. Brooke Merva says:

    This is my first time at your blog. I was on a message board and someone mentioned your christmas tags. I decided to come take a look. And all I can say is WOW!!! I am so glad I did. I am going to go back and look at the rest of your christmas tags. I am definately going to keep coming back to see the rest of the tags

  9. Brenda says:

    Wonderful techinque today and thanks for telling us that all of these techinques will stay here in the archives….
    I really love all the texture of this tag….

  10. ~Lana B.~ says:

    This is my favorite by far! Very, very elegant looking! I’m really loving the distressing inks! Very unique and interesting. THanks so much again for sharing!!!
    ~Lana B.~

  11. Gail Goodman says:

    Another beautiful tag and yet another example of why your projects appeal to so many of us. Beautiful work and clear, concise directions. Maybe one of these days I will be able to play with some of the newer things that I don’t have yet.
    Merry Christmas!!!

  12. Shelly says:

    Gorgeous tag! Your creations are simply stunning and are great works of art. Love it! Can’t wait to see what you will have for tomorrow!

  13. Vickie Jones says:

    Okay I thought the blue would be my favorite, but this one just screams Elegant Chrismtas to me, I love it, and unlike some of the other tags, I think I have 90% of the things needed to make this one so I guess this is the one I’ll try this weekend.
    Thanks so much for sharing!

  14. silvia says:

    Wow!!! Another awesome technique!!! I hope to be able work on these tags over the week-end.

  15. Mandy says:

    i love this tag, tim. this is my fave. havent been able to look or comment for a couple of days as i am still on dial up and so i cannot download your blog too well! so im at my mums whos on broadband so i can comment! yay
    love it! im defo going to try this one. im not a great embosser but will give it a go.
    you make it all look easy!
    mandy (uk)

  16. Michelle says:

    Hi Tim,
    Think this is my favourite one yet.
    I’m sure that will change over the coming days πŸ™‚
    Thanks again for all the inspiration.
    Michelle in Ireland

  17. Oh yeah…this is the best so far! Love. It. Thanks, Tim…

  18. lynne says:

    i logged on at 5:25 a.m., so i had to make do with what i already had in the house. i used antique linen for the first dtp and tea dye for the second step. used a piece of cut n’ dry foam to press the ink. edged everything with black soot and pressed again with the foam. used a paper towel as recommended, but there was no excess to remove. and what was i working on? padded mailing envelopes, ATCs, and gift box tops. when the stores open, i will be there with my 40% off coupons to buy more distress ink. thanks, tim.

  19. Jolene says:

    I am currently in a state of distress…because I don’t have enough time to try all these techniques!! Keep them coming, we are all in inky heaven! :^)

  20. Carol Lee says:

    It’s another WOW! factor with this incredibly beautiful tag! I just watched you make ornaments on the Carol Duvall show a while ago, then came here and found this latest gem you’ve created. I honestly don’t know how you continue to outdo yourself – but you certainly do! You are such a talented artist and I thank you for sharing so much of it with us. I know it’s a lot of work for you, but I appreciate it!!!!

  21. CUBuckeye says:

    Wow! I didn’t realize Distress Inks were SO versatile! Now I have to get more than the 3 I already own! πŸ™‚

  22. Bevyb says:

    Everyday something new to learn. Emboss with Distress ink…who knew… Tim did!
    Now this tag just blew me away. First off it uses one of my favorite distress colors – Shabby Shutters and second love the idea of using clear embossing powder. Got to try, today!
    Can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings.

  23. Nonna Tindal says:

    BEAUTIFUL! I absolutely love it! LOVE IT!
    I love the color and the layering of distress inks. Also the use of embosing powder. Tim – As we say in the south “Your in high cotton” So, keep up your wonderful work! Can’t wait to see what you come up with tommorrow! Have a great day!

  24. Sandy says:

    Another great tag! Thanks for sharing…now I need to get busy making some tags. Merry Christmas!

  25. Julie Howard says:

    I think this is my favorite one yet!! It is beautiful!
    Thanks, Tim, for showing us all these great techniques!

  26. wow, you make it all look so easy and not scary!! Can’t wait to start playing!

  27. Joanie Hoffman says:

    Hi Tim,
    I really appreciate the step by step instructions. New techniques can be very frustrating, and intimidating, but you have taken the fear & frustration away, and left inspiration.
    Thank you!
    Happy Friday,

  28. Gloria L. says:

    Really appreciate the sharing going on here… you are an inspiration to all of us, no matter what level. Thanks so much!
    Gloria L.

  29. Cheri says:

    I would have never thought to use clear embossing powder and then rub distressed ink over the top. What a cool idea. Love it!

  30. Gina Beans says:

    Nothing could cheer me up better on this chilly sleepy Friday morning than a Tim tag!!! Thanks for all your time & dedication bringing these techinques to us each day. I have now realized that the 3 distress inks that I own are simply not enough. Must go shopping!!!!

  31. Kelly Wontor says:

    I’ve actually never embossed before(gasp! I know!!), but your step by step instructions and detailed pictures have convinced me that there is room on my scrap table for a heat gun! Thanks Tim!

  32. Shermala says:

    Love, love, love this one! I can’t wait to try the new technique! Thanks so much!

  33. Denise Morris says:

    Ok now I’m totally confused because each day I think “this tag is my favorite” and then you proceed to blow it out of the water the very next day. So, I’m just going to have to say “this set of tags is my absolute favorite of all time!” How’s that for covering everything! I adore everything about today’s tag but the sheet music adds the most perfect touch.
    Thank you Tim!
    xoxo’s Denise (Beer?)

  34. Nancy says:

    I’m usually a bit intimidated by distressing techniques–can’t get over my “it’s not perfect” hangup–but this I think I could do! Thanks both for the technique and for all the info on the products. So many companies like to keep secret all the details of their products (I guess in an attempt to make us think that theirs are the only ones we can use for their projects), it is refreshing that you share so much with us. And it actually makes me want to use the Ranger products even more, because I understand what they can do so much better.
    Many, many thanks.

  35. Christie says:

    I love this one! Great Technique. Thanks for sharing.

  36. Caryl says:

    I agree! This is my favorite tag so far, too! There is just something about “Noel” that totally captures Christmas! And this is just a beautiful piece!

  37. Teresa says:

    I can’t believe you! Every day there is a new and complete awesome tag. I love the hardware on this one! They look so pretty and even though you show step by step how to do it…it still overwhelms me…it just looks so perfect!!! I checked out your grungebord. So cool…how ever you got that idea…genius!!A man in the scrapbook industry with so much talent!

  38. Amber says:

    I really cannot decide what technique I want to use first. My hubby keeps asking me what I want for Christmas. I told him to goto Hobby Lobby, Ac More and buy anything that had your name or Ranger on it!!!
    Thank you for starting/helping me with a brand new addiction. I have been scrapbooking for 12 years now and I really thought I would never see any really “new” techniques that would WOW me.
    Well, you have Tim and I am loving this blog with the ideas and directions.
    You Rock

  39. Deidre Mooney says:

    Today will be my day..I can feel it..what a great present to have under the tree and what an awesome tag…can’t wait to try this…pick me Random Org pick me!

  40. Cristina says:

    Great technique Tim! I love the idea and can’t wait to try it! I am going to have to go and buy some more colors of your pads to do this one!
    Keep it up with the great tags!

  41. Erin says:

    I didn’t know it would emboss!?!?! Hooray! another use for my ink!

  42. Val says:

    Ok, another awesome tag! This is one neat technique…the effect is so cool. Thanks again Time!

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