Friday, March 9, 2012

Metal Enamel embellies

  In December, I participated in Tim Holtz' twelve tags of Christmas.While I did make many of the projects, I really never got around to sharing all of them. One of my favourite projects were these little metal tags he made using sheets of craft metal. I don't have any craft metal. What I did have were some soda cans. So, since march is about green things over at Scrap Our Stash, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to finally share how I recycled the cans to make some very cool metal embellishments. How do soda cans relate to green things? Well, I am being green by recycling.See how one can twist a challenge around!!! are going to need an old pair of kitchen shears. I keep a pair around just for the purpose of cutting thick cardboard and metal. Soda cans are your next item. Be sure to wash them out. I recommend letting them dry a bit too, or you may spill water all over your work space. Take a dry can and carefully cut a slit into it.

Now for the next part, you need to be VERY careful. The edge is a bit jagged you don't want to cut yourself. Also, as you cut, try to make slow, even cuts. This way, you reduce the chance of having metal shavings fall off.  Insert your scissors into the slit and carefully cut the top off the can. You can use one hand to depress part of the can as you go, allowing the scissors to fit in the slit and cut more evenly.

Now that the top is off, cut a slit down one side toward the bottom. This will allow you to more easily cut and remove the bottom of the can.
You will then have a somewhat curled sheet of metal.If one side it jagged, you may wish to trim the ends to leave a nice even cut. If it's damp, dry it a bit with a cloth.  You can now die cut it or emboss it as desired. I chose to use my scissors and I hand cut a few tag shapes.
Once your metal piece has been embossed, you can begin to paint it. I used acrylic craft paint. Some paints cover better than others. Experiment with different types to find the look you wish to achieve. I did find that some of the paint began to peel. This is ok. It will add to the grunge look you are going for. You also need not worry if your paint job is perfect. As you can see, mine is not totally even.
Your next step is to sand down the tag. This will reveal some of the metal beneath it while leaving other areas covered. I used a nail file.
Now, carefully wipe any dust off, then stamp over the metal tag with a distress ink pad. Then cover with clear embossing powder and heat. The result is a wonderful metal enamel embellishment. The clear embossing powder seals the paint in and prevents it from any further peeling.
You can then choose to add additional embellishments to the tag.

Don't forget...if you have something green to share, pop over to Scrap Our Stash.

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