Monday, June 30, 2014

Dance Team Bag Tags!

     Well, it's summertime (Yay!) and around here that means sleep-away dance camp.  So, I decided to reinvent some bag tags I'd seen on Pinterest for my daughter's team to take along.  I began by playing around on my PrintShop2 program with some design ideas incorporating their school colors, school name and team name.  I must say, I love this program because it's very easy to operate, and if you're looking to do some graphic design work without spending a small fortune on software, it's a good fit for making invitations, favors, etc.  Anyway, I used the template for business cards because it fit my bag tag sleeves that I purchased at Office Depot (there are cheaper versions available online in bulk, but I didn't have time to wait for shipping!) Once I settled on a cover design, I printed some full sheets onto card stock and cut them apart.  For the reverse side of the tag I wanted to personalize them with each girl's name, but since PrintShop2 only allows a full sheet of the same design within the business card templates, I would cancel the print after two were printed and that worked great (Hint: Rotate the page to fit two sets on each sheet of paper...less waste!)  Now, I have one set of names for the bag tags and I have a full set of the girl's names to use for something else in the future.
     Each laminating machine probably works basically the same, so you'll just want to be sure to set your heat setting to the right millimeter thickness for your project. In my case, the luggage tag sleeves are 5 mil thick.  Be sure to heat your machine up completely, and to place the sleeve seam side to the bottom of the protective sleeve that comes with the tags (it's the end with the stitching across it.)  So, I sandwiched one each of the front design and one of the personalized name design, centered it in the bag tag sleeve, placed it in the protective sleeve and let the machine do the rest. 
     Now, onto the cutesy part! I purchased some inexpensive grosgrain and metallic ribbon and some mini-bells (after all, it's the team's name!) at JoAnn's.  I used some heavy buttonhole thread to sew mine together, but I'm sure a hot-glue gun would work too. To adhere the bow and charm to the tag, I attached the loop first (they are included) then sewed it through the whole and ribbon.  I just felt like it was a bit more secure than hot-glue, but that's up to you as the crafter! Oh, and if you're wondering why there's a candle in the assembly photo...that's because I like to melt the very end of my grosgrain ribbon to keep it from fraying. Be very careful, it can go wrong quickly and melt too much or worse catch fire, so move quickly! A lighter works too, but only do this step if you're an adult please!
     I'm not gonna lie, it took a good two hours to laminate, prep the ribbon and assemble 16 tags (it would be faster to glue than sew) but I think you'll agree they are worth it.  Too cute! Can't wait to give them to the girls at camp!

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