Adorn Your Holiday Packages with Watercolor | Anne Butera | Skillshare

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Adorn Your Holiday Packages with Watercolor

teacher avatar Anne Butera, watercolor artist, pattern designer

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.



    • 3.

      Making Color Swatch Tags


    • 4.

      Making Round Tags


    • 5.

      Creating Tag Collections


    • 6.

      Making Gradient Swatch Tags


    • 7.

      On Your Own


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About This Class

Do you have a growing collection of watercolor test swatches and experiments but don't know what to do with them?

In this quick class I share some inspiration for creating gift tags for your holiday packages. Using your painting scraps and a few simple tools you can create beautiful, unique adornments that show your love of watercolor.

These tags are also a great way to spruce up your packages if you have a handmade business. Collections of handmade watercolor tags make great gifts, too.

Please note, this is not a painting class, but the paintings that you'll be using to create your own tags require very little skill or effort. I give a few suggestions and ideas throughout the class and share glimpses from one of my other classes to help explain a couple techniques.

Music in the Introduction video: 

Noel by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (

Music in the On Your Own video: 

Happy Little Elves by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (

Meet Your Teacher

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Anne Butera

watercolor artist, pattern designer

Top Teacher


The beginning of my story might sound similar to yours. When I was a child I loved to make things, but as I grew up I "learned" I wasn't good at art and stopped making it.

But that's not the end of my story.

As an adult I eventually realized something was missing from my life and I began to play with the idea of learning how to paint. I was encouraged by the example of other artists who had begun their creative journeys as adults with no formal training. Their stories gave me confidence to try.

When I started out learning how to paint I didn't know where to start. I learned by doing (and by failing and trying again). 

It's been a long road, but today I work as a watercolor artist.

My art has been featured in magazines an... See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hi, I'm Anne Butera, the artist behind the website and blog, My Giant Strawberry. I love sharing my passion for watercolors and encouraging your joyful creativity. In this super quick mini class, I'll share some inspiration for creating beautiful, unique gift tags from your watercolor experiments, swatch pages, and color play. Taking scraps and simple tools, you'll be able to create gift tags to adorn your holiday packages with watercolor. If you need some last minute inspiration, click "Enroll," and let's start creating together. 2. Materials: If you're like me, you might have a lot of watercolor test sheets, experiments, color palettes, play, just lots of little bits that you're saving and wondering what you could possibly do with them. I'm going to show you in this class how we can use them to adorn some holiday packages. I have a lot of these little color palettes too. I'll show you. If you don't already have a collection, it's easy enough to create some simple paintings. In my color class, I show you how to layer some colors, and how to mix swatches on paper. It's really easy and fun. Once you do a few of these, you'll have some pieces that you can use in this class. I'm going to wrap my packages with brown craft paper. It's my favorite simple, easy backdrop. I can use some string and some washy tape to wrap them. Even scotch tape will work too. Then in terms of tools, I'm going to use a circle cutter, I love this, it's easy to use, and a hole punch, and that's it. So in the next lesson, we'll get started. 3. Making Color Swatch Tags: Using your color palette swatches as tags is probably the easiest thing to do. All you have to do is match a pallet to your package. I like to match by size. So a longer one would go with a longer package, and then just tie it. I've pre-wrapped this package and already tied up the string. All I have to do is do the final bow and that's really as simple as that, and it looks really pretty I think. You can match the colors to the person. Whether it's an idea of what's inside the package or what the person's personality is like. Something feminine and girly, for someone who's a little feminine and girly, more masculine colors for a man, however you want to do it. It's just very simple. This is a really long package, it's fun. I have a really long color palette. I can write little message on the back. Doesn't have to be fancy. I found that a sturdier pen works best with watercolor paper because of the texture. Tie your bow, and you're all set. You could wrap all of your packages to look similar using color pallets on all of them. Then everyone will know who they are from, the watercolor painter in their lives. I'm just giving you some examples, how these different packages look with the different color palettes. Even if it's not a holiday, if it's someone's birthday or if you run an etsy shop or sell at craft fairs, it's nice to wrap your packages like that. There you just saw a glimpse of some of the washy tape on the side of the package, that just gives it another little fun bit of color I find. You can punch the hole in the white part of the paper. You can punch the hole in one of the color swatches. However you want to do it. It's as simple as that. 4. Making Round Tags: Here's another really easy way to create some tags. I'm using a circle punch and I'm just going to cut some circles from these watercolor experiments and I love how this looks like plaid. I'm using my circle cutter upside down so I can carefully place the image in the circle and make the most of my watercolor pieces. Figuring out where I want the colors to go and that way I'll have the most interesting looking tags. Trying to use as much of my sheet is I can, just to cut out the circles and I can do this with my other sheet. Both of these I made in my color class here on Skillshare and they are really fun. To finish your text, just simply cut a hole with a hole punch and that way you can tie them to your packages. This is really quick, really easy and it gives you a really pretty result, I think. We can use any experience. I'm going to save the other one for a minute, but we can have stripes, more plaids, put these off to the side for now and if you pick a whole sheet with watercolor, you can get some pretty results too. I really like these green colors here. We've got some interesting things going on with bleeding colors and effects with water. They look like miniature watercolor paintings. So those make great tags too and you can easily paint a sheet with one color, with a couple colors and then just to cut some circles. Here's another wavy stripe, that makes fun tag, some circles. I've got some interesting things going on there that's really easy to do too. This one is also from my color class. Looks like some interesting polka dots. That's a really quick and simple, easy way to create a pretty gift tags. 5. Creating Tag Collections: To give your packages a cohesive look, it's nice to create collections of tags. Here I'm just laying out all the tags, the circle tags that I created to look at them together. Some of them I have enough to use altogether, like these green ones here. I can wrap all of my packages with these pretty green tags. But if I don't have enough of one tag, I can combine a couple different kinds. Here's some blue ones, another monochromatic collection. But these polka dots, I don't have enough of. So I'm going to combine them with some solid colors. For the plaids, I didn't have enough of any one type of plaid. So I can combine a couple of different plaids to create a cohesive look. These purple tags combined nicely with the plaids and the circles and a nice blue stripe. 6. Making Gradient Swatch Tags: I'm going to give you one last example of a tag that you can make, although there are lots of different possibilities. This one just takes a simple gradient swatch page and trims it into individual tags. So each color swatch is a single tag, and I'm just using a paper trimmer. I'm trimming them into roughly equal sizes, trimming off a little excess on this last one. I'm just eyeballing it instead of measuring, and then finishing off my tags, I punch holes with my hole punch, and this is super quick, super easy. You can use any colors, you can do this with a full page. That's all one color, multiple colors. Just one more, a little bit of inspiration for your own tags. 7. On Your Own: For your class project, simply create a collection of gift tags using watercolor scraps. You can create circles, rectangles, the choice is entirely up to you. Take a photo of your gift tags, or your wrapped packages, and share it in your class project. I wish each of you a beautiful, healthy, and happy new year. Thanks so much for creating with me this year. I look forward to what will each get up to in the coming year.