Monday, March 27, 2017

Easter Egg Pop Can Tabs Card

 Create a unique Easter "hollow" egg card with
pop can tab window edge and ribbon decoration
that brings to mind the scenic sugar eggs of past holidays.
Card measures approx. 5x7 when the hinged back is closed
in place. Aluminum tabs are laced in place with soft twine
perle cotton or 6-ply floss, using a blunt needle inserted
through the inner and outer series of needle holes.
Here the card is shown with a special,
coordinated insert that peeks through the window
to express "happy Easter" with layered grassy bottom accent.
(Find the assembly steps for the "Happy Easter Grass" plaque
beginning in step 26.)

ASSEMBLY:  1. Identify and cut the shapes:
A card "base" front   B card "base" back (jointed)
C egg front    D  "icing" accent shape
E top "banner" tag (for personalization)
NOT SHOWN: plain interior sentiment plaque
2. Position and attach the "icing" accent ring
on the front of the egg card front, taking care
to line up each of the many needle holes
for lacing the tabs in place.
NOTE: it may be helpful to use a narrow pointed
tool such as an awl or large needle to push
into the holes in strategic places to make sure
holes line up exactly before glue cures completely.
3. Prepare for the lacing steps by cutting
two 30" lengths of selected lacing materials
(no. 5 perle cotton shown here; soft baker's twine,
6-ply embroidery floss, or crochet cotton 
are other good choices). You will also need
a blunt tapestry needle or darning needle
that is the smallest size that will accept
your "thread" through its eye.
Check to make sure it will travel through
needle holes easily.
4. Collect and prepare 18 aluminum "pop can"
pull tabs, and make sure that the "break"
is uniform on all, and that any sharp edges are
bent flat, filed or removed.
5. Position the first tab at the center bottom position.
NOTE: the tabs can be held in position until
the first lacing stitches secure them in place.
OR, as is suggested by this image, a little
quick-grab "invisible" glue can be used to
"tack" them in place as the assembly progresses.
NOTE that each tab, when positioned correctly,
should be "between" the needle punch holes . . .
. . . that are configured "around" each tab pair position,
which can be more easily seen in this illustration.
NOTE how each of the irregular "scallops" of
the "icing" accent shape indicate where a tab
should be placed.
6. Thread one length onto the needle.
Position the tail end on the backside below 
the bottom holes sequence for the center bottom tab, 
and anchor in place with a small piece of cello tape.
7. Begin the first stitch by pushing the needle
through to the front on the right side inner holes row
on the INSIDE of the tab.
(ONLY the right stitch is completed now;
see step 13 for the final, left side stitch.)
8. Complete the first stitch by moving the needle
across the tab structure to the hole immediately
to the right of the first hole just exited
and inserting into the hole, pulling the thread
through completely to the back.
The "stitch" just completed should lace
the tab in place.
9. Position the next tab to the right, "centered"
over the holes assigned to it.
Insert the needle into the inner row hole
on the left INSIDE position . . .
. . . and pull the thread completely through
to the front.
10. Complete the left side lacing stitch by
inserting the needle into the "shared" hole
that is between the first and second tabs.
NOTE that this sharing of the needle holes
between the tabs will happen all around the
INNER row of lacing stitches.
11. Complete the right side lacing stitch
in similar fashion, inserting the needle into
the right inner hole, pull thread through,
then insert into the hole across the tab structure
and pull thread through to the back side.
Here is a closeup of the first stitches.
12. Continue to add a new tab, stitch in place
with left and then right stitches, sharing the hole
between the tabs when two adjacent tabs are
laced in place, etc., until all 18 tabs are in place.
NOTE that only the inner stitching is completed.
13. Complete the left side stitch of the FIRST
tab to complete the inner lacing row.
14. Clip excess thread leaving a short tail,
then anchor the tail in place with a small
piece of cello tape.
15. Cut a 36" length of silk-style ribbon 
(1/2" wide or so), and thread it down-up through
the center bottom slots. Pull through to center
the length evenly on each side.
16. Lace one side, then the other (left shown here,
with ribbon threaded through a large eye needle)
by taking ribbon OVER the left side tab structure,
then UNDER the adjacent tab structure and UP
through the inner center opening, then OVER/UNDER
in sequence all around the left side until the ribbon
comes UP through the center of the TOP MIDDLE tab.
17. Repeat the process of ribbon lacing for the
right half (in mirror image), going OVER the tab
structure of the bottom tab, then UNDER
the adjacent tab, then continuing OVER/UNDER
until all tabs are laced and the ribbon exits
at the center of the top middle tab.
(NOTE that the ribbon ends will eventually be
tied into a knot and bow; it can be done now
but the outer lacing row may cause it to
become un-tied.)
18. Prepare the second length of lacing thread
by threading needle, anchoring tail end
at top of the egg backside, above the outer ring of
needle holes near center.
19. Insert and push the needle through on one side
of the top center tab, cross the tab structure
to insert down through adjacent hole and
through to backside to complete first stitch.
Continue the same lacing process
as was used for the INNER lacing row,
except that the outer row does not share
holes between tabs EXCEPT . . .
. . . for the three tabs at the mid sides, shown here.
20. When lacing of the outer row is complete,
trim excess thread leaving a short tail,
anchor on the backside with cello tape as before.
21. Tie the ribbon bow, trim excess ends.
22. Position and attach the egg assembly
onto the card base FRONT, matching the inner
window scallop edges exactly.
Use appropriate adhesive for the added weight
from the tabs.
23. Position the sentiment plaque on the
inside of the card back base
using the cut guide marks.
(OR, assemble and position the coordinated
"Happy Easter Grass" plaque design
as described beginning in step 26).
24. Position the card front assembly over the
card back base (shown here without the interior plaque),
with outer edges aligned, and attach the upper portion ONLY
above the dashed line.
25. Add the personalization banner
with embellishments.
This completes the card.
This design is specially designed
to coordinate as the accent insert
for the hollow Easter egg card.
It can also be used as a postcard-style
card, with additional decoration such as
a loop of twine or ribbon, threaded through
a hand-punched hole or holes, etc.
26. Identify and cut the shapes:
plaque base with positioning guide marks
"happy" and "Easter" word cuts
grass layers (bottom to top) 1 thru 4
27. Layer the grass unit by positioning
shape no. 3 over shape no. 4
(2-4 include number ID cuts)
with bottom arc and upper "scallop" edges aligned.
Then layer no. 2, and finally no. 1 on top.
28. Position and attach "Easter" word cut
over the plaque base using the guide cut marks
(indicated by pointing finger) to align bottom edge
29. Position and attach the "happy" word cut
using the "h" bottom and "y" tail cut guide marks
to align the shape.
30. Position and attach the grass unit on the bottom
of the plaque with lower arc edges matched
and centered.
31. Position and attach the plaque onto the card
back base, then . . . 
. . . complete the card as described previously.

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