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Tea Bag collages

Tea collages

We are always trying to squeeze the most creativity out of the bare essential materials. This week I have taken as my starting point the classic tea stain effect, often used when faking an old look on a treasure map. The brewed tea bag is washed over paper leaving a sepia-like stain. But I wanted to rethink this easy process, using this thrifty and very approachable technique to create something new; a stunning moth collage. 

For my A4 sized moth I needed scissors, glue stick, some dark paper or card, black or blue. Then some assorted scrap collage, newspaper, white card, light coloured card, and some kraft paper (inside of a cereal box will work well). You will need about 3-4 A5 pieces of collage in total.

Wash each piece of collage paper with a teabag that has been dampened with warm water. Leave to dry for a half hour, then go back with a fresh dampened teabag, and squeeze some droplets of tea onto the paper straight from the teabag. Add more water to the teabag as needed. Leave until dry, in the sun would be great. You should have a pretty neat texture when dry, those droplets will look so great on the moths wings, like those big eyes. 

Now fold each collage piece in half with the tea effect on the inside, draw some organic shapes on the folded paper an them cut them out. Try teardrops, circles, ovals, jellybeans, and semi-circles. When cut, these collage pieces will be doubled because of the fold, this helps get symmetry in your moths wings.

Now cut a moth body out to start your collage, a sausage shape. Glue this down to your page. Start building the wings, and don’t forget to google some images of moths for inspiration. Collage the organic shapes overlapped at the edges, and try to keep with the symmetrical theme the whole way through. Glue each piece down well. Finishing touches can be antennae and eyes too.

With some of my leftover pieces I crafted a cocoon for my moth, why not? I’m feeling an Eric Carle vibe.

I wonder what else we could create with these lovely tea-stained paper cut outs?? I can’t help but think of organic nature shapes, perhaps you might have some ideas to share too? Let us know in the comments below.

Until next time – happy creating!

Tracy x

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