Saturday, December 24, 2016

Santa's Nine Reindeer Christmas Tags

Welcome to my last Christmas post for the year. Aren't you glad?!! Today, I am bringing up the rear, day 12,  for The Crafty Scrapper's 2016 series of the 12 Tags of Christmas. Don't forget to go to The Crafty Scrapper site and see Days 1 - 11, with Guest Designers like Wendy Vecchi, Dina Wakley, and Paula Cheney, and of course all the design team's tags. Okay so, I went a little overboard, but I've had this thought for a few years, so it was time to bring it to fruition. Here are Santa's nine Reindeer, and their stories as never told before...hey, don't judge me!!! Parental guidance is suggested as there is adult humor in this Real Reindeer of the North Pole, and grab some eggnog as it's long, and you will want to keep reading. They have their trials and tribulations just as all of us do. On Dasher, on Dancer, on Prancer and Vixen, on Comet, on Cupid, on Donner and Blitzen...and don't forget Rudolph!

To make all the tags, I used Translucent Yupo paper from Ranger. I pounced, dripped, dotted, and layered on the Alcohol Ink in greens, reds, blues, and metallics. The wonderful thing about Yupo is, if you don't like it, then you can remove it with Alcohol Ink Solution and start again. I also stamped the backgrounds with Black Soot Archival using the Christmas Words Holiday stamp from  Tim and Stamper's Anonymous. Then I trimmed down the Yupo and mounted them onto Tim's new Distress Mixed Media Heavystock Tags.
Using the Heavyweight Cardstock, I die cut Holiday Knit pieces from Tim and Sizzix, and most of the deer using every deer die I could find. I also die cut Metallic Kraft Core with the Dimensional Stars dies, which I added more gold on top with Ranger's Paint Dabber to give it texture. NOTE: I kept all the pieces from the Holiday Knits to use on the tags.
I die cut the Ornate Frames with Acetate, embossed them with Snowflakes, and gave them all Alcohol Ink to match the tags. You can still see through the frames, except under the Mixatives, to see the background I also punch the large pine needles from Silver cardstock, and computer generated their names to go onto the dimensional stars.

Dasher:  Dasher, the original number one before Rudolph,  is the fastest and most fit of the reindeer. I mean this reindeer is buff, and he knows it. He lead them all when they went out on Christmas Eve, except for the year he got put on the 'no fly' list when he had traces of steroids in his system, and Santa had no choice but to look for another, and that was when Rudolph entered the scene. Dasher was so embarrassed, and he never did that again, so all was forgiven.  That has not exactly made Dasher a fan of Rudolph, and of course jealousy has ensued. When not working for Santa, Dasher runs a gym, Dasher's Dumbbells, and he regularly puts all of Santa's team through rigorous workouts. He is married to Dancer.
I stamped the reindeer from Reindeer Flight onto Gold Metallic Kraft Core, using Forget Me Not Archival from Wendy Vecchi. Then I embossed it with a mixture of Cobalt Antiquities and Forget Me Not powders. Then I cut him out, mounted him on Silver Cardstock, and inked over with Distress Embossing Ink, and heat embossed with Ultra Thick Embossing Powder. He looks like a piece of cool.

Dancer: I know what you are thinking...Santa only has male reindeer...wrong! Santa has two female reindeer on the team, and Dancer is one of them. She is full of spunk and character, and of course loves to dance. She runs her own dance studio, Dancer's Delight, which adjoins Dasher's gym, and the two work regularly hoof and hoof. She has all her dance wear designed by Donner, and is thinking of starting her own line. She also loves to plan parties, and helps Blitzen do that occasionally, but her crush on him has kept her away recently.
I die cut the deer twice, and cut around the forefront legs on the second die cut. I used Gold and Java Bean Paint Dabbers to color her and give her texture. I used bits from the leftover die cuts from the Holiday Knit as an eye. Then I used brad to attach the extra legs so she could move. Initially I added horns to her using the Branch Punch, but was told girl reindeer don't have horns, so I took them off. Later though, I read only one breed of reindeer...Santa's have horns, so I might go back and attach them later.
She loves dance clothes and tutu's, and this green one is her fav.

Prancer: Prancer is of course Santa's first and most favorite reindeer. He is the Mayor over all the reindeer at the North Pole, and is hugely respected. He is the oldest and wisest of them all, and he knows it all...been there done that kind of guy. He is still absolutely handsome and in great shape, Paul Newman is his inspiration, and struts his stuff wherever he goes. He is batting fourth in the reindeer line on the sleigh...think grandslammer of course...and plans out all the routes for Santa on Christmas Eve along with Comets help. He is currently with his 3rd wife, Vixen.
Prancer is the golden child, so he was embossed with Ranger's Gold Embossing Powder. More bits were used for his eyes.

Vixen: If the nine reindeer were the characters on Gilligan's Island, Dancer would be Maryanne, and Vixen would be Ginger! Vixen is Santa's second female on the team, and the envy of all reindeer ladies and desire of the males. She is an actress, and does all the commercials and movies at the North Pole. She is beyond glamorous and elegant, but at times a little snobby. She has written a book, "How To Be Confident, Poised, and Sexy in a Reindeer World", and guest speaks at many of Cupid's Relationship Seminars. Donner loves designing for her, and says she has the perfect body and pelt of all the reindeer. She is thinking quite serious about starting an antler and fur care line. She is currently married to Prancer, but has a secret crush on Blitzen.
After die cutting with the Distress Heavyweight Cardstock, I pounced on Silver Mixative, and then a lot of Currant and Poppy Seed Alcohol Ink. I love how dark and deep the colors are.
I embossed with the Snowflakes, and pounced Classic Cherry Paint on the raised portions using the Alcohol Ink Tool foam. I colored her rose with Alcohol Ink as well.

Comet:  Comet is the brains of the team, although quite quiet. He studied at MIT, and astronomy is his thing. He regularly contracts out for NASA and the National Weather Service. He keeps mostly to himself working and eyeing telescopes, when not flying around the Earth. He loves the band Kiss, and has tattooed his eye and a few places on his body Paul Stanley style. He is currently unmarried, but has been rumored to have fathered a few illegitimate reindeer.
I attached the antlers made from the Branch Punch, and then covered the deer with Distress Embossing Ink. Then I embossed him with a mixture of Weathered White and Frosted Crystal powders. Then I inked over him ombre style with various blue Archival Inks.

Cupid:  Cupid, well really, Dr. Cupid, is a practicing psychiatrist, and of course love therapist. His practice and office, Cured Conundrums by Dr. Cupid, is booming January through November, and he takes December off each year to get ready for the Christmas Eve journey. Last February, he was so overworked that he employed the services of Dr. Ruth, which turned him into a global success. They are now considered best friends. He has been unmarried all these years, and instead enjoys helping others to couple up. However, with Vixen's help during seminars, he has developed feelings for her, and is seeking help himself with Dr. Phil.
I cut two deer, one from heavystock and one from ribbon. I adhered the ribbon onto the top of the other. I used the trees from the Holiday Knits bits to make antlers, and also cut off some of the branches to make an arrow.

Donner:  Donner, Mrs. Claus's favorite, is the clothing designer and tailor for the whole of the North Pole, and his lines run from regular to couture. He has tried for years to get Santa's team to don a uniform, but to no avail. Only Dancer was for it. He knows the reindeer call him Donner Versace behind his tail, but he secretly loves it. He makes Santa a new suit every year, and Mrs. Claus is always draped in his work. He is also about to launch a home design line as well, with bedding, pillows, and tableware, in conjunction with Ralph Lauren. The sweater seen below that he is wearing, is from his Donner Noir couture line, and runs for $450.00. It is almost sold out, as a new oil pipe line through the North Pole, has deepened the pockets of elves and reindeer alike. He and Mrs. Claus travel several times a year to Paris, Milan, and New York City, and are always sitting in the front row for Fashion Week. Donner is unmarried, but is man crushing on Blitzen at the moment.
I covered the Maya Road Deer with Gold Paint Dabber for great texture. Then I stamped the Holiday Knits, trying to get the deer pattern, using Silver Paint Dabber. I traced around the deer to make the sweater, and cut it out and adhered it.

Blitzen:  Blitzen, almost every reindeer's secret crush, is the town party animal and party planner. He is the Brad Pitt of the reindeer world, and every teenage reindeer has his poster on their wall. His golden tufts of fur are like no other, and he keeps them very long around his head. No one puts on an affair quite like Blitzen's Blitzed Out Bashes...his company. He was even on Oprah's Favorite Things list in 2015, and that really skyrocketed his business. He has worked for every Hollywood A Lister out there. However, he has a hard time keeping away from the Eggnog, and is regularly seen side prancing. He has gone through Cupid's detox program twice, but he always shapes up come December 1st, to be ready for Christmas Eve. Santa would never tolerate drunken flying! He knows every reindeer wants him or wants to be him, and that really makes his green eyes shine with pride, but also drives him to drink more. He is busy all the time, but tries to find time to fly...when sober... down to California, Hawaii, or Australia to surf, his favorite thing to do. He is the most eligible bachelor deer at the moment, but doesn't really fancy anyone but himself for the time being. He is having too much fun being single.
I stamped the deer from Scribble Woodland Christmas using Black Soot Archival. I painted in some parts of the hair and head using Gold Paint Dabber. Then I misted Vintage Photo on the head, and Walnut Stain on the antlers. I doodled with white pen, and then added lots of Stickles.

Rudolph:  Rudolph is the newest on the team, and also the most famous. You know the song! If he wouldn't have saved foggy Christmas the year Dasher couldn't fly, children all over the world wouldn't have gotten their presents. But going from rags to riches and fame over night really took a toll on him. He hasn't been able to handle it all, and not only is he having a hard time glowing, he has become somewhat of a recluse. People only see him out and about right before Christmas, or when he is at the pharmacy to pick up his Glowagra...a medication to help him make and maintain a glowy red nose...but his bodyguard keeps them at bay, so autographs are rare. His agent and best friend, Blitzen, try to keep him busy doing commercials and movies. It's not that he needs the money or anything...he makes $.05 every time 'Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer' and 'Run Run Rudolph' comes on the's just Cupid advised Blitzen to try and have him around as many reindeer as possible to overcome his anxiety. He is trying hard, and is actually getting better, but writing him letters of encouragement really might do the trick.
I inked over the whole deer with Red Geranium Archival and then heat embossed with Red Geranium Embossing Powder. I used the bits from Holiday Knits to make his eye and design sparkles.

And there you go...the real lives of the North Pole Reindeer. They have had their share of ups and downs, and you can only imagine the pressures, not to mention the weather beating, they have endured all these years to deliver presents to all the good little boys and girls of the world, but they have all triumphed and continue to carry on the Christmas spirit. We can all learn something positive from each of them, and they really do inspire. I hope you now understand and appreciate them a little more...they really are quite the team!
That's it for a bit everyone. I WISH you the most wonderful Christmas ever!!!

Supplies All Found At The Crafty Scrapper:

-Ranger Yupo Paper: Translucent
-Ranger Alcohol Ink: Red Pepper, Watermelon, Poppy Seed, Meadow, Currant, Pitch Black, Citrus, Limeade, Turquoise, Patina, Stream, Gold, Silver, Snow Cap, and Pearl Mixative
-Ranger Alcohol Ink Applicator
-Ranger Alcohol Ink Solution
-Ranger Tim Holtz Archival: Black Soot, Ground Espresso
-Stamper's Anonymous Tim Holtz Stamp Set: Stripes and Holiday, Reindeer Flight, Holiday Knits, Scribble Woodlands Christmas
-Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Mixed Media Heavyweight Cardstock: Tags #8
-Sizzix Tim Holtz Thinlets: Dimensional Stars, Holiday Knit
-Sizzix Tim Holtz Bigz Dies: Dashing Deer, Reindeer Flight, Prancing Deer, Ornate Frame #2
-Maya Road Wooden Deer
-Ranger Paint Dabber: Gold, Silver, Java Bean, Classic Cherry
-Core'dinations Tim Holtz Kraft Core: Metallic
-Sizzix Tim Holtz Texture Fade: Snowflakes
-Bazzill Acetate
-Ranger Wendy Vecchi Archival Ink: Sky Blue, Forget Me Not, Red Geranium
-Ranger Wendy Vecchi Embossing Powder: Cornflower Blue, Red Geranium
-Ranger Embossing Powder: Cobalt Antiquities, Weathered White, Frosted Crystal, Gold
-Ranger Ultra Thick Embossing Powder
-Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Ink: Embossing, Gathered Twigs
-Ranger Mini Ink Tool
-Ranger Matte Medium
-Ranger Glossy Accents
-Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Spray Stain: Vintage Photo, Walnut Stain
-Ranger Enamel Accents: Black Tie
-Ranger Stickles:  Gold, Shamrock, Christmas Red, Cinnamon, Platinum
-Sizzix Tim Holtz Paper Punch: Large Pine, Large Branch
-Tim Holtz Idea-ology: Tinsel, Jingle Brads
-Sakura White Gelly Roll Pen
-Glue Dots
-Various Ribbons, Sequins, Rhinestones

I hope your hands get creatively dirty soon!


  1. These tags are absolutely amazing. Love them all. Thanks for the inspiration and for sharing your creative process!

    Merry Christmas to you and yours; may the New Year keep you safe, healthy, and creating more art so I can continually be inspired.

    Gaby xo

  2. Wow, your tags are gorgeous. Merry Christmas to you and your family. I can't wait to see what's in store for use in 2017. Bring it on.

  3. This is one of the most astounding projects I've seen in ages! Wow, I've read through your post 3 times now and I love it. The colors and ingenuity are fascinating to look at one by one, the backstory is so fun! A cast of all my favorite characters and leading men. Thanks for all your incredible hard work, thank you for sharing the process. I can't pick a favorite they are all too wonderful.

  4. You really ought to write a book Anita, I love the story you tell - and of course some female reindeer have antlers, they are just a little softer.... A stunning set of tags and a fun and wonderful story! Merry Christmas to you and yours! Hugs, Anne xx

  5. I loved the story! I was busy reading the technique when the MIT graduate phrase jumped out at me and I went back to the beginning and read them all. So creative and I can imagine the fun you had writing each story! I have a friend that has created back stories on fairies that make you laugh out loud so I'm sending this to her. Yes, you should write books!

  6. Oh my gosh! These are tremendous, Anita! What fun and how creative! You really wowed me with this amazing set of tags! Here's to a very merry Christmas to you and yours! Autumn

  7. You've had me grinning from girl antler to girl antler Anita! Do any of the retailing reindeer have their products on etsy?? You know Santa could do a great shipping sideline from Jan to Nov!! I cant decide which marvellous reindeer is my fave but I can indeed recognise aspects of all in my life! Fabulous storytelling and creating!! Your tag lineup is excellent! Merry Christmas to you and yours dear Anita. Nicola x

  8. These are fabulous ,and I love all the back stories. You are a creative genius!! Love it- The sweater is awesome. As is the play on their names- Blitzen the drunk. Hope you had a great Christmas!!

  9. What a brilliant idea, Anita - I adore your realisation of the nine reindeer, and their stories! Fabulous tags, every single one.
    Wishing you and yours a peaceful 2017.
    Alison x

  10. These are fabulous and so creative, Anita! Thanks for sharing your artwork with us!
    Happy New Year!

  11. Wow are so talented! Happy New Year!

  12. Incredible project Anita! love everyone of these tags , they are amazing! happy New Year! Barbara

  13. Wow, what a dashing collection of tags. I didn't make a single Christmas tag, but I did make a little village using Tims dies... physically ran out of time! Love what you did here and thanks for all the step out shots. Always appreciated.

  14. That's such a gorgeous series! I can imagine them hanging from a Christmas tree. Happy New Year!


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