Stencils and Tags in an Altered Book

When I rip out the pages of my altered book, I usually end up with a couple pages that don’t rip as close to the seam as I want. What to do with those pages? Add tags in your altered book!

gluing tags into an altered bookgluing tabs in an altered book






I chose to glue two tags together with the ripped page in between them.

  • Get tags or other pieces that are the same size.
  • Glue the bottom of one of the tags with a liquid glue (Tacky Glue) that’s strong and glue them to one side of the ripped page.  Tabs in an Altered Book
  • Using the Tacky glue, glue the other tag all over and line it up with the opposite tag.
  • Hold every thing down while the glue sets up so nothing comes away from the seam on the ripped page.
  • Close the book so it dries with some weight on the tags.

You can use a pocket, envelope, one larger piece, or many smaller pieces. I’m going to make little collages on the tags and write quotes on them.

Now for stenciling with gesso!

I already have 2 layers of stencils on this page. The first one was a random pattern with squares that I used a pallet knife to scrape gesso through the stencil, next paint, then a circle stencil with clear gel medium. FullSizeRenderThe gesso is opaque and using the clear gel medium shows the square pattern through it. Paint on the gesso is more opaque and paint on the gel medium acts more like a stain. After everything dries Usually sand the page lightly (hold the page down tight so it doesn’t rip). I love the different layers that come through when I sand. The distressed look is really cool.

IMG_1504I felt the page needed something else so when I got my new stencils from Stencil Girl, I wanted to use them all and I knew this would be a good one for this page.

Be very careful with stencils that have thin details. When you wash them, don’t scrub because you’ll catch one of the edges and damage it.


Gesso with stencilYou can see that I scraped some gesso down the page to carry the image further.

I put a bright yellow drop of paint in the middle and darker around the edges. I got a paint brush wet and painted in lined starting from the middle out. I wanted to keep the middle more of a bright yellow that went to oranges and a red-brown.


gesso and stencilsThis is too dark for me so I blotted some of the paint off with aIMG_1508 kleenex while the paint was still wet.

All the times you layer something on your page adds depth to it. If you want to add more paint and blot off several times to see what happens – that’s fantastic. Experiment!

FullSizeRender (2)I sanded the whole thing after it dried.

Now I’m ready to either collage on this, doodle, or outline the patterns.







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