Let's Talk Tape

Tissue Tape, Washi Masking Tape, Gaffer Tape...even colorful Duct Tape! Let's not forget the metal tape that is used in the heating and cooling industry. All of these tapes have a place in my artwork. Let's talk tape!
Tissue Tape
The idea for this discussion came about when I facilitated the Tattered Journey project last Saturday. It was recommended to cover the sides of the box or canvas with Tissue Tape, which gave the project a lovely finished look. The great thing about Tissue Tape is that you can use it to hide a variety of mistakes. I've always said, nothing in altered art isn't fixable. Use a cool vintage patterned tape to cover your oops's and it will look like you did it on purpose!

There is a challenge with Tissue Tape, stemming from the same thing that makes it wonderful. The tapes are repositionable. This is great because you can take the tape off and replace it until it's perfectly placed. This also presents a challenge because it makes your piece more fragile while you are still working on it. I discovered while wrapping the sides of my project that the tape would catch on my hands and fold over.
I decided to burnish the tape to the piece, which makes it stick better. For those of you who don't know what burnish means, it means to to make shiny or lustrous by rubbing. Now, we are not trying to make our tape shiny, but if you rub over the tape with a smooth object, like the back of a spoon or other smooth tool, and use gentle pressure (not tearing the tape) the tape edges will stay down better.

Another cool thing about the tape is you can apply ink to it, to change the look. I suggest Ranger's Distress Ink, which can be applied with your finger, direct from the ink pad, or even better by using a blending foam tool.

Gaffer Tape
Gaffer Tape, is tape that is used in the theatre, television and movie industry to hold down cables, wires, anything that needs to be secured but will later need to be removed. It's made of fabric, usually cotton and is very strong. I don't use "real" gaffer tape, but tapes that are made by Seven Gypsies for us altered artists that are called gaffer tape. They have cool vintage patterns on them and work great for covering objects that have a dimensional surface.
I used Gaffer tape to cover a small wooden frame that I put on my Tattered Journey project. These tapes also have edges that can curl up, so gentle burnishing will help keep everything down. (very gentle or you'll wear the color off) They are repositionable, but you can't move them over and over because the adhesive begins to wear thin.

Foil Tape
Also known as Mastic Tape, it's used in the building industry to seal gaps in heating ducts. The brand I have is made by Nashua and was purchased at my local home improvement store for under $10. The roll is huge and should last quite a while. It's very fun to use in your art, so give it a try.

What to do with it, you ask?
You can color it with Alcohol Inks or Staz-on ink pads. You can emboss it in your Cuttlebug, Big Shot, Vagabond or other embossing machines. I suggest adhering it to cardstock or paper first, but it's not absolutely necessary. I used some in an altered book, and embossed it with a pencil and some other metal tools. I also placed some dimensional foam stickers underneath and got some raised designs that were cool.

Duct Tape
Everyone knows how creative you can be with Duct Tape. There are even contests for best prom attire made from Duct Tape.

I took a class from Shauna Swantek and we made a purse from Duct Tape and Cards. I actually used ATC's instead of playing cards. Here I used brown Duct Tape to create the rim of the bag. Loved the results!

Washi Masking Tape
Alas, I do not own any of this, but have heard from crafters who reside in the Orient how fun it is. Wide variety of colors and patterns. I imagine it's similar to Tissue Tape, but don't know for sure. I'm planning on ordering some from the internet soon so I'll report back when I know more.
That's all for this post, hope it wasn't to sticky for you to wade through it all! Blessings!


last minute lynn said...

Love the duct tape purse!

Anonymous said...

Excellent description on various tapes! Can't wait to see what you come up with on Wasabi!

Barb C.

Inge Bekaert said...

Hello Lori,

thanks for sharing your experiences with the different tapes !

I have a special bookbindingtool to rub down bookbindinglinen or tape,... and it doesn't make it shiny because of the material it is made of ( not of bone, some kind of soft plastic).
i use this a lot too to make things stick together better.

I like the use of the metal tape : I have used it too little and you're right about coloring it with alcoholink ! I must give this a try.

greetings from Belgium

Barefootstamper said...

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Stop by and grab a blinkie for your blog :)

starrgazer said...

I am dying to try out washi tape too!