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Magazine Lifting With Tape

More transparent tape effects below using some scrap kraft card stock, retro style Christmas paper and a mixture of both tape techniques. For a more vintage look as seen in the main image look for classic serif letter styles in magazines and avoid sans serif and modern styles. You can also try aging the text before lifting.

Magazine Lifting With Tape

A happy accident led to more ephemera fun. As I was working on my abstract letter journal cards, inspired by a painting, I got interrupted. My magazine page dried too fast which led to a second spray with alcohol water (I always use a mixture at my craft table, ratio for this project below). That second spray led to me being able to lift my text/image completely off the page without peeling off any additional paper. A very transparent tape image. I was thrilled with the Tim Holtz style results and created some mini polaroids with retro style Christmas paper as well


What you’ll need:

Magazines (glossy)

Acrylic paint or gesso

Glue stick

50/50 rubbing alcohol water mixture

Card base

Distress your magazine images or text with acrylic paint, let dry, paint is not necessary but I wanted a peeled paint sign effect for my letters.

The first faux washi technique is one I have been exploring in several of the last posts using different papers.

For the second more transparent technique; lightly mist the magazine image you want to lift with a mixture of 50% water and 50% rubbing alcohol (any strength). Let it dry almost completely, it will dry fast and then give it a second spray, apply your tape, burnish lightly and then lift. Add glue stick to the tape if necessary before applying to your base.

I have tried the transparent technique on other papers like digitals and only had minimal success. I think glossy images work best and in my opinion the alcohol dissolved the ink surface of the glossy images and the double spray weakened the paper fibers enough to allow for more transparency and less lifting of paper. It takes a little practice (mostly getting the ideal paper wetness) but it is so much fun you won’t mind. Either way transparent or torn, the abstract, distressed letters or words look great! Try images or patterns too.

Tip: If your paper is too wet you’ll only end up dissolving the adhesive on your tape and it won’t be able to lift at all. So if you see shine after spraying, give it a blot. For a more vintage look  use classic serif letter styles in magazines and avoid sans serif and modern styles. You can also try aging the text before lifting.

Try packaging, wrapping paper, greeting cards or any other glossy surface to see if that might work as well. I did not have luck with Martha Stewart Real Simple magazine as the pages are dull but most of the magazines I tried did work, they were all glossy.

I hope you’ll have lots of fun using old magazines to create any type of ephemera, cards, tags, charms or even to decorate pages, planners or greeting cards.

Happy paper crafting!


Owner Espresso Press Design.