January Technique Challenge--Tea Stain

January Technique Challenge--Tea Stain

Lisa Dolezal Lisa Dolezal

Happy New Year! I still can't believe it's 2017! For January, I wanted to revisit an art form that goes back hundreds of years: Tea staining. It is thought to have originated in the Orient, but the actual history is unclear. Tea staining was an art form that revitalized old, stained items into useable pieces. It can also be used as a dye on new items creating an antiqued, aged look on paper, linen and lace.

You can achieve this aged look in a few easy steps:

1. Brew several bags of tea and let cool.

    2. Pour tea into a shallow dish. Add papers and tags. 3. Allow items to soak until desired color is reached. (I soaked most items for about 15 minutes.) Experiment with a variety of papers such as watercolor, mixed media and card stock.

    4. Remove from tea and set aside to let dry completely.

    Fabric can be dyed as well. (I soaked some white ribbon for about 30 minutes.)

    After my dye experiment, I got a little adventurous.

    I tried "stamping" with the tea and a small prep bowl to create "rings". The watercolor paper worked best for this technique. The key is to leave the bowl on the paper for several seconds allowing time for the tea to absorb.

    This card features the tea-stained ribbon and a doily. (The photo really doesn't do it justice!)

    I added Sepia Accents to the coffee mug and small paper bits for steam.(Coffee Break papers and stamps. ) (Edited: Now available in digital stamps.)

    The tea-stamped panel was cut into three pieces and matted.

    I created a coffee sleeve from the back of the larger sleeve included in the Coffee Break collection. (You could save one from your next visit to your favorite coffee place.)

    Both the doily and tag on this card have been tea-stained.

    If you know me personally, then you had to have had some inkling this would progress to wine staining!

    Pour wine into a shallow dish and use the bottom of a wine glass to stamp rings onto a watercolor paper panel.

    Be purposefully messy, creating splatters on the background. Disclaimer: No "good" wine was harmed while creating these projects. (Club Scrap papers, leaf, wine glass stamp, button. Recollections cork. Paper Smooches merlot quote.)

    Have fun experimenting with this very old and eco-friendly craft. Repurpose, reuse, recycle! (I created these art pieces with the sole purpose of making cards. I would not recommend using these items and panels with keepsake photos.) I would love to see your creations using this timeless technique. 


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