Tried and Tuesday: How to Make Folded Tags for Your Handmade Products

Tried & TuesdayGearing up for my first craft fair of the season, I am excited that this year my products will finally have little taggies on them with the name of my shop!  Last year was such a rush that I never even thought to sew in little tags.  But this year, thanks to a little inspiration and guidance from my friend and partner in crime over at Koalala Kids, all my little Ouchie Owls and Coffee Cozies will be sporting the name “Sweet P’s!”

I feel so professional!

The best part about it, though, is that I did not have to BE a professional (or hire a professional) to make these little tags.

There were completely DIY.

Which means you can make them, too!!!

Here’s what you will need:

  • – A Computer
  • – A Printer
  • – A Design
  • – Freezer Paper
  • – Solid colored fabric (the lighter the better)
  • – A Washing machine & dryer
  • – An iron

Tag SheetCreate your design.  Keep it simple.  I wanted my tags small enough to fit behind owl wings, so I stuck with my shop name and nothing else.  We also have not tested colored ink on this method!  The little we did use (as guidelines) completely faded out in the wash.  Black ink is best.

Shrink it down to your desired size.  I wanted mine tiny, so they are 11-point font.  Depending on how big or small you want your tags, consider this now.  Cut out a piece of paper.  Fold it up.  See exactly what size you’re hoping to achieve and go from there.

Create some guides.  These will help you know where to place your logo on the label.  If you are using Word or Publisher, just follow the rulers.  In Publisher, I created my own guides by clicking on the top ruler and dragging the little pink line onto the document.  (this can also be done from the left ruler for vertical guides)  In Word, you may need to insert a thin, dotted line.  You could then delete these after you center your logo.  My columns are two inches wide and one and a half inches long.  Then I just centered all of my logos in the middle of those boxes.  I got 28 labels per sheet.  Print some samples and tweak accordingly.

SewingPrint your labels!  Cut your freezer paper to the size of a piece of printer paper, then iron the cloth onto your freezer paper. (the cloth can be bigger than the paper… it’s easier to trim it later)  You have to hold the iron on it for a good long time!  Pay special attention to the edges and corners, because that’s where the printer will catch if it’s loose.  When it’s ironed on securely, trim edges down to the size of the freezer “paper”.

Insert into printer, making sure the fabric is on the correct side (printers will vary).  Print away!

Heat-seal your fabric.  Peel your printed fabric off of the freezer paper.  Lay a thin cloth over the top of your label fabric and iron, holding the iron in one place for at least 15 seconds.  Move slowly around the piece, holding the iron for 15 seconds at even intervals.  This is the most important step, so don’t hurry through it!  If the ink is not heat-sealed it will smudge and fade in the wash and ruin your labels.  Once you’ve done it a few times, you can removed the top cloth and iron directly.

Cut TubesWash on cold, gentle cycle and dry to seal the ink.  Pull out and admire your work! (you may want to iron it before you admire too much)

Depending on how you want your labels, now is the fun (tedious) part.

Sewing & Shaping your tabs.  I cut my columns down the middle (if you don’t see your guides anymore, just eyeball it, or use a ruler.

Fold the column in half lengthwise with the words inside your fold.  Sew a 1/8 inch stitch down the long edge.

If you want to try and turn your little tube inside out now, you are welcome to.  I did not.  I cut my tabs out right away, looking through the fabric to make sure I was cutting at the right spot.  I ended up with a bunch of little tubes.

TaggiesThen you turn each little tube inside-out so your seam is on the inside and your words are on the outside.  Iron flat so that your words are centered on the tab, then fold in half (or wherever you need to fold it so your words have the correct amount of margine) and iron.

Now you have a million little tiny tab labels, ready to be sewn into all of your products!

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