This week is Banned Books Week and to celebrate I made some bookmarks for my book-loving friends.

Here’s how they came together:

I started with this set of XL tags, they are a really good size and will make perfect bookmarks. I used this stamp set for my GOT obsessed friends (and myself!) but you can use any book-themed stamps you have on hand.

Paint both sides of each tag with black gesso and leave to dry.

Gel Printing

For these tags we are going to make a monoprinted background using a gel plate and some metallic pigment inks – like these Delicata ones.

Using the ink pads, cover the gel plate with a thin layer of ink, making sure to keep the colours separate to avoid contaminating your ink pads, and then use the brayer to spread and mix the colours on the gel plate.

Before the inks dry, use a large background stamp like this one from Simon Says Stamp, to stamp out a pattern all over the gel plate.  Then quickly take a print by pressing a sheet of Bristol paper down with your hands and smoothing it out.  Please note, it is also possible to print directly onto the tags themselves but for these tags I wanted to stamp on top of the printed background and wanted a smooth surface for that, so Bristol paper is perfect for that.

Choose the parts of the print that you want to use, and using the tags for placement, draw around them and then cut them out.
At this point you could glue the paper on to the tags but I wanted to make sure my stamping was perfect and that I didn’t make any mistakes that couldn’t be undone, so I left the gluing to the tags to the final stage.


Just a reminder that this awesome GOT inspired stamp set is the one I used for these bookmarks.

I actually used two stamp sets, one for the GOT imagery and a book border stamp from Darkroom Door to stamp along the bottom of the tags using Versamark Onyx Black archival ink.  I used my Tim Holtz stamp platform to position the throne image and the word stamps to make sure they were in the same horizontal position on all three tags.


Now for the fun part!  Using Wow embossing ink, cover the entire tag and the dust with a translucent or clear embossing powder.  I am using this Vintage Beeswax mixed media powder that gives an aged, waxy look.  Heat the embossing powder with a heat tool, then repeat the process 2-3 times. Here’s a close up of what the tag will look like with three layers of embossing powder – see that thickness and shine on the bottom left corner where the light is hitting it?

Finishing Touches

To finish off the tags, make a tassel from some baker’s twine and loop it through the hole at the top of each tag.  I used a gold and white twine to match the gold in the backgrounds.

You can visit the GSL Cuts blog post here and links to the UK shop are in the Project Recipe below.


PROJECT RECIPE for Book Lover Tags:

GSL Cuts Decorative Tags XL – Model D92B
Black gesso
Wow Embossing ink
Emerald Creek – Vintage Beeswax embossing powder
Heat gun for melting embossing powder
Gelli plate, brayer, background stamp, Delicata metallic pigment inks to make background (or use a background from your stash)
The Ink Road – Throne Stamp set
Darkroom Door – Book Border Stamp
Versamark Onyx Black ink pad
Tim Holtz Stamp Platform
Nuvo Deluxe Adhesive
Baker’s twine or ribbon to make tassel

Entered in the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge 

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