I'll be the first to admit I am a tea hound. And the worst part of it is that a long time ago I started saving the tags and wrappers the tea comes with.
I mean, I have a couple of large plastic zip bags of these things, and they have been taking up space and more space and I kept thinking, "Yeah, I'm gonna use them on something...." so I would stash a few more into the bags, and a few more, then push all the air out and shove in a few more.
Finally, the other day I was working with a cradled birch panel (I had ordered a bunch from Cheap Joe's as I thought these might be good for more aggressive mixed media pieces---read that *nailing stuff on*) and was looking at the bare gessoed back. Okay, what do you DO with that? This was not like my box canvas pieces that could be turned around, but I hated the white with smears of paint from the edges and figured since it was wood, maybe it would be wise to collage something on it to seal it.
And that dim bulb, that slow *Bzzzzzzt!*.....that ah-ha moment arrived.
I can try the tea bag wrappers. It isn't going to matter; it's on the back. If it looks bad, no worries.
I grabbed the exploding bags and pulled pieces with great zeal---trimming the edges so they would lay flat and slopped on the collage medium. (for the record, Traci Bautista's Collage Pauge in matte)
At first I wasn't too sure, but as with any collage, the more you put the better it looks and soon the whole back was covered with interesting tea images. So I had been right all along---this would work and look good!
I gave it all a chance to dry, but still, I saw those paint edges and decided a slight wash of the same color over everything would be good, and a second wash of another iridescent color would make it even better! It was finished with a coat of satin varnish and is perfect.
I really like it.....very simple, some color and pattern, a definite part of *me* there, and no glaring white back!
Some days it pays to be a pack rat. ;-D