Spooky packing tape transfers | How About Orange

October 08, 2009

Spooky packing tape transfers

Here's a quick and easy Halloween project: votive candle holders with packing tape transferred images. You'll need clear packing tape and access to a laser printer to make these.

First, select the image you'd like to apply to your candle holder. (Check here for scary vintage clip art, like this spider, bat, crow, skull, aardvark, or search the database for other illustrations.)

With a laser printer, print your images out 2" high (or to fit within the size of the clear packing tape you have.) An inkjet printer won't work for this project, so don't even think about it!

Laminate the front of your image with packing tape. Use your thumbnail to burnish your image onto the tape, making sure the parts with toner are stuck down well. Then trim the picture down to size. You can either cut carefully around your image now, or just cut out a square and trim it later. Doing it now is probably easier.

Soak the image in a bowl of warm water for ten minutes. Then rub the wet paper fibers off the back until you're left with just clear packing tape and toner.

The tape will still be slightly sticky, so you can directly apply it to a candle holder, or for a more permanent solution, adhere it with Mod Podge, acrylic gel medium, or other glue.

51 comments:

Grandma G said...

How creepy. ;-)

Jess said...

Don't worry; I won't send you one. In fact, maybe I'll peel them off and replace them with puppies and kittens.

Grandma G said...

Puppies and kittens would be much better! And thanks for not sending me one. You're so considerate!

Mum

Allison said...

Aarvarks are scary?

Jess said...

That was a test to see if anybody was actually reading.

Grandma G said...

They look kinda scary to me!

Okay... I'm gonna go sew now. :)

Laura Trevey said...

love this!!

Heidi said...

What a great idea!!

Rook No. 17 said...

That is cool. Looks like ol' packing tape is going to give duct tape a run for its money :)

Jenn @ rookno17.blogspot.com

ohbrooke said...

Are you kidding me? This is retarded cool. I'm doing it.

val said...

how awesome! thanks for sharing!

brooklynechaos said...

OMG these are soo kewl. I can think up a bunch of ideas for this AND my boyfriend happens to have a laser printer. Yay!

RobinCharlotte.com said...

I love these!!! So cool! Transfers are always exciting!

Cherish @ My Cup of Tea said...

That is the coolest thing ever!!!!!!!!!!

marymary said...

I will never remove your blog from my Google Reader subscriptions, because you never cease to serve up pure awesomeness. Did you come up with this packing tape printing technique yourself?

britt said...

how fun! will have to try. the kids would love this.

Tracy said...

that aardvark is a bit scary!

MidnightCrafter said...

aardvarks Are scary 0_o Hsve you Seen their faces??
Will hsve to try -- how does this work for color??

Lea-Ann said...

I have this sinking feeling that everything in my home will now have some sort of packing tape decal on it...

Holly said...

What a great project!!! I can't wait to try it on all sorts of things!

Katie said...

AAAh I love learning new techniques like this! Love it! Thank you!

watson the cat said...

clever - i had no idea you could do that.

Kathryn Johnson said...

it works fine with an ink jet printer.

Headless Angel said...

awesome! I am wondering a couple things though... mod podge is brushed on outside of piece or used to adhere it? and also...think if you sprayed this with sealer it would be waterproof, say for cups?

summerstyle said...

this has got to be the most absolutely fabulous thing i've seen months. love it!

Jess said...

Kathryn, how'd you get it to work with an inkjet? I did a test, and the ink bleeds everywhere so the image is ruined.

MaryMary, nope, I didn't invent this technique. It's just one of those things out there in the world. Like knitting or something.

Headless Angel, I'd put the Podge under the image like glue. About the sealer, I'm a little doubtful, plus I'm not sure the sealer would be food-safe for drinking and such. I don't know. Guess you could try it.

Jess said...

Oh, and color laser prints should work fine. You might test it with magazine pages too. Offset printed stuff should work.

Becky said...

I was about to waaaaaaaa until I read that it WILL work with an inkjet printer too!

Thanks for sharing!

screaminscott said...

Awesome idea. candlelight and Halloween just go together so well.

Here's another spooky use for packing tape:

http://www.tapesculpture.org/gallery.html

Erin said...

Aardvarks are not to be trusted. Cool project, Jess.

Anna said...

Eek! I don't like spiders, haha, but it's a nice idea (: howell I'll stick with the pumpkins

Kosmika said...

Love it! :) this time of the year i'm in the mood for spiders and creepy beasts better than cute kittens. Now i need a laser printer...

Elaine said...

I've done the same thing in art school with acrylic gel medium - brush it on really thick, let it dry, and then remove the paper pulp with water. Never thought to use packing tape!

NB: It only works with laser printouts or photocopies because it's the toner that sticks to your film.

Tonya said...

Brilliant. Such an easy way to make custom glass items.

tonyadusold.blogspot.com
tonyadusold.etsy.com

shannon said...

Just wanted to let you guys know that I tried doing larger print outs and it worked. All you have to do is slightly overlap the tape on the image, and it holds it together. Good luck with doing larger projects!

Jess said...

Great, thanks!

HollyandGary said...

This clipart website? Is. Amazing.

Thank you for sharing!!

Anonymous said...

this is how we used to fake our IDs back in high school.

Amanda said...

That is so cool! I love Halloween!

libbyunwin said...

LOVE this!

Jess said...

Hey, yeah! Fake IDs might be a good DIY project to post, too. I'll keep it in mind. :)

Sarah said...

This is such a cool idea. Did you download the gif or tif? I don't quite understand how to size for printing. I adore your website. Look forward to hearing. Sarah

lizzcorner said...

You could also just print on a transparency sheet and mod-podge it on. And you don't need a laser printer in that case.

Sarah said...

thanks for the reply. I have a laser printer, I just don't seem to be able to size the images to fit the tape or the container. Sarah

Jess said...

Sarah, I don't remember which I downloaded. Probably the largest size, so it would have the most resolution when I scaled it down. I used Photoshop to open the image, and entered 2" as the height I wanted the image resized to.

People without Photoshop could use an online image editor like Picnik, which will resize images, I believe.

Or try adjusting the settings in your print dialog box. If you download and print the largest spider image at 18%, for example, it will fit on 2" wide tape.

Rachel the Great said...

Brilliant! Makes me wish I had a laser printer!

rocknrolla said...

Thanks again for a super idea! Linked on She's Crafty-http://crafty.littlerockmamas.com/index.php/2009/10/25/sppoky-packing-tape-transfers/

all american packaging said...

At How About Orange, learn how to make packing tape transfers of creepy Halloween images that you can use to decorate votive candle holders and whatever else you can find for the holiday. The technique is a great one for any type of image, not just Halloween!

Origami Queen said...

I tried this but it didnt work but I know it was a layser printer

Felissa And Leigh said...

Hi! I tried it and I love it!! Do you think you could do larger prints and use laminate paper?

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