For this project you need packing tape, printer paper, and a laser printer. A laser printer is one that uses toner cartridges. Inkjet printers will not work for this project.
Basically, you are just making stickers here. Regular stickers. Calling them “packing tape transfers” implies that your printout will somehow “transfer” to another object. But that is not the case. This project really is just showing you how to make stickers.
Find some artwork that you like and print it out using your laser (not inkjet) printer, just as you normally would. I chose black artwork similar to what you see in the photo. Anything on the white paper is going to end up clear, not white. You will want your design to be small enough that it could be covered with a single piece of packing tape. I have also seen this project done with color photos. You could print out a family photo and create a sticker for a white jar candle in clear glass jar, for example.
So, you might guess the next step – it is to take your packing tape and stick it right on your paper covering your artwork. This is going to be your sticker. I know that seems strange, but keep reading. Rub hard to press the tape to the design really well. I just rubbed hard with the handle of my scissors.
Cut out your design into whatever shape you want your sticker to be. So, you might cut a square or rectangle (remember, any white paper is going to end up clear), or you might cut closer to the outline of your design.
Put your sticker (tape on paper) into a bowl of water. You are going to soak off the paper. The ink (toner) will remain on the tape, and believe it or not, the tape will remain sticky!
In the original instructions, the author said she left her sticker in the bowl for 2-3 minutes and then rubbed off the paper with her fingers. It looked messy and annoying. I left my stickers in the bowl for a good long time. I basically walked away and forgot about them for one or two hours. When I came back, I picked up my stickers out of the water and effortlessly peeled the paper right off. Sure enough, my black ink design remained on the tape. I set my tape down, sticky side up, to air dry. It dried sticky!
That’s when I realized my tape still had the tiniest little pieces of white paper stuck to it. I mean so tiny they were practically microscopic, and yet enough that it bugged me when I put my sticker on a clear glass votive. So, for me, putting stickers on white pillar candles turned out to be more satisfying.
This is so easy and fun. Give it a try! And let me know what you made.
(Image credit: Andrea from The Cottage Market)
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