Making Stuff with Avery Labels

by Matt on July 8, 2011

MATT’S NOTE: There have been numerous requests for my template art as well as inquiries about the Limoncello bottles. Unfortunately I am unable to share the art. The bottles, purchased at World Market, haven’t been available for quite some time and I haven’t seen them since I purchased them a few years ago. Thanks so much!

Can I confess something to you? Will you promise not to tell anyone?

I am a Closet Crafter.

That’s right. I’ve got drawers full of labels, paint, brushes, gluesticks, scissors and hole punchers for those moments when I feel the creative streak hit me. I even made my own label for a gift I gave Paula Deen back in May. But it’s not often that I get out the craft box as crafting does require a certain amount of time and effort and the only reason I keep my crafting status in the closet is because I’m no where near as good as so many of my crafting amigos.

As part of my involvement with Martha’s Circle I was thrilled when they reached out along with Avery Labels and asked if I’d be interested in creating something with their products. It was perfect timing: I had limoncello I made earlier in the year that was ready to give out as summer gifts as well as a batch of simple syrups I made to take to an afternoon cocktail party. Rather than just give blank bottles I said “yes!” to the opportunity to use a variety of Avery labels for my lil gifts. I knew they’d look professional, polished yet still retain a handmade feel.

I raided my prop closet for various bottles with lids that would fit the project. I knew I wanted oval labels for the front of my simple syrups bottles. These little bottles were filled with sugar, water and various fruit and herbs that were all cooked together and allowed to cool. Set on the bar, all you need is a splash of soda water, a spirit like vodka or gin or rum, a few teaspoons of simple syrup and lots of freshly cracked ice for a very easy simple drink.  Give it a stir and enjoy. I’m not one to fuss during the summer months, ya know.

I opened the word templates, saved as a PDF and then imported them into Adobe Illustrator where I would have more control over the design. But it's not necessary!

Using Avery Easy Peel Print-to-the-edge Kraft Brown Round labels I created a template that I downloaded from them and modified my art in Adobe Illustrator. It’s moments like this where I’m glad I have a background in graphic design!

(But even still, it’s not difficult, trust me. Avery makes this so easy and it only took minutes!)

After I filled my bottles with the various simple syrups all I had to do was peel and stick. So easy. The most difficult part was making sure they were even but I got it pretty close.


The second part of my project involved bottling up some of the limoncello I made back in January. This Italian concoction is made from fresh lemon peel, vodka and sugar; it’s allowed to sit for several weeks (turning often), then strained and bottled. The sweet, lemony syrup is great over ice, in iced tea, cocktails, drizzled over ice cream, you name it! And like so many things it always tastes better when you make it yourself.  Because a little goes a long way, I didn’t need large containers for gifts. But I wanted to try a small hang tag to go around the neck of the bottle so I used Avery Printable Tags for Inkjet Printers. They were pre-cut and only required a simple feed through my color laser printer to make (I used a template I downloaded from Avery). Couldn’t have been easier!  I finished the bottles with decorative string and a round white blank label with a handwritten date that it was made on.


Everything came out great and it makes me happy to give them as gifts. Even if everyone will probably be too drunk to remember them. Oh well!


Thank you Avery Labels for letting my Inner Crafter come out and play!

Want to put your best brand forward and enter for a chance to win prizes from Avery? You can! Visit the Best Brand Forward Contest for details and how to enter. The 1st Prize winner will receive $5000 and your brand and product will appear in an upcoming issue of Martha Stewart Living. Pretty fantastic if you ask me! There are also 2nd and 3rd place prizes so get up on this y’all!

The Fine Print: Avery sent me the product of my choice for this project and I was compensated for designing, creating and photographing my creations. The concept, design, execution, and opinion of Avery Products is my own. Thankyouverymuch!

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{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

Tina July 8, 2011 at 10:10 am

Where did you get those adorable bottles for your simple syrup??? I’ve been looking everywhere for something like them since I had to resort to using mason jars for my limoncello…

Matt July 8, 2011 at 10:18 am

Hi Tina! Aren’t they just the perfect size? I got those from The Container Store, here’s the link:

Alexandra July 8, 2011 at 10:36 am

I am just so jealous of Adam sometimes. ; )

tracy July 8, 2011 at 10:56 am

I bow down. Holy COW yer good.

Joe Randazzo July 8, 2011 at 11:02 am

Matt!! You single handedly continue to be one of my most talented friends!!! xo

Amanda S July 8, 2011 at 11:26 am

Perfect idea for labeling my Christmas gifts this year! (homemade vanilla extracts, hot chocolate packets and dry rubs!) Thanks for sharing I’ve been looking for something like this! (BTW The Container Store rocks).

michael July 8, 2011 at 12:14 pm

HEY. So adorable !
Where did you get the bottles with the screw top lids ??
Those are hot !

Alana D July 8, 2011 at 12:47 pm

Such cute crafting you do.I’ll have to look into avery labels

sally cameron July 8, 2011 at 12:56 pm

Yay Matt! Just one more thing to love about you. I’ve been a crafter my entire life. Love the post! I glaze over in the Container Store. Always fun to explore. I just finished a batch of nectarine chutney and am attempting my first crack at pressure canning. Will need some labels!

Darci July 8, 2011 at 1:12 pm

I am loving these ideas. I am the label queen but had not seen the kraft paper option. And the tags are a perfect addition to my Baby Shower inspiration Pinterest…

Terry C July 8, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Matt, this is just astounding. How many other secret sides do you have? For instance, I didn’t know you had a background in graphic design, but of course that just fits. You have given me some inspiration for some different things to do with my photography — on a much simpler level than yours, and I am just beginning. But I have had a small amount of success locally, enough to make me want to continue, and your post and your creativity are very encouraging. Thank you!

Martha July 8, 2011 at 3:16 pm

I love the tags… they are soooo neat! I have to put something together for my sister’s wedding and ideas like this are invaluable. Where did you find the limoncello bottles?

Letizia July 8, 2011 at 3:32 pm

LOVE your Limoncello bottles and labels!!!!!!
When I see fun contests like these, I wish I were American :(

Karina July 8, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Matt, they are gorgeous–you are so talented. Just one precaution–reprint your lavendEr bottle tags…misspelling!! (eek!) (Matt says: FIXED! Thank you!)

You are so inspiring. Thanks for a great post, I had no idea Avery labels made stuff like this now. :)

Lorraine at Figs and Artichokes July 8, 2011 at 6:07 pm

I have been an Avery product user for forever, but these are just the greatest dodads. I am planning some homemade stuff for Christmas this year and will steal you ideas shamelessly.

Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga July 8, 2011 at 8:36 pm

Being that I am Averie, I of course love the name of these labels.

And I remember when you visited and blogged about your trip to Avery Island.

You’re just full of Avery things aren’t you :)

The labels look awesome, Matt!

Jasmin July 8, 2011 at 11:48 pm

Oh this is tooooooo cute! May I ask where you got those bottles with the screw on silver lids?

The Innkeeper's Daughter July 9, 2011 at 6:20 am

Who knew? about the crafter in you? The Avery stuff I knew the bold graphic designer stuff, damn ur good!

Renee July 9, 2011 at 8:26 am

This is so awesome! I am totally doing this! I am making (or rather, attempting to make) limoncello now! (And, I hope it turns out, hate to waste all that good vodka!) I had no idea Avery labels could look so good! Thanks so much for sharing.

Frances @ The Foodess Files July 9, 2011 at 10:38 am

Ohmygosh, that Limoncello looks amazing!!!! I’ll have to get over my fear of technology to make some labels for the homemade vanilla I give as gifts, because those look so great. Just out of curiosity, what kind of berries did you use for the berry ss?

Kim July 9, 2011 at 1:23 pm

So cool! What font is that??

Matt July 9, 2011 at 5:08 pm

Hi Kim! It’s called Caslon Graphique.

Kaleigha July 9, 2011 at 5:35 pm

I too would love to know the source of those screw-top lid bottles. Such a cute idea!

Kristy Lynn @ Gastronomical Sovereignty July 10, 2011 at 10:13 am

Yup, great gift idea. I’m on it!

Culinary Cory July 10, 2011 at 1:19 pm

Super cute labels and I love the bottles. Very charming.

Jen July 11, 2011 at 3:57 am

They look fab Matt, my Dad loves limoncello so I am going to make some as a present. Do you have a recipe and also a code for the avery luggage style labels. I’m new to your blog, it is fab! Jen

michelle July 12, 2011 at 9:01 am

Illustrator rocks. I, myself, like for little jars and whatnot.

Kimberly July 12, 2011 at 12:57 pm

Doesn’t look like Matt wants to share the info where he got those cute bottles. Matt just say so if you don’t want to.

Matt July 13, 2011 at 6:49 am

Hello Kimberly! The bottles with lids come from Cost Plus World Market. Thanks!

Chelsey @ Chew with Your Mouth Open July 13, 2011 at 7:45 am

These are AWESOME! I have to try this at home. SO chic and cool… Everything I am not. I can definitely rock a poser kitchen! ;)

Liz July 13, 2011 at 9:35 am

What a cute idea. The labels look great! Recently I have actually been using chalkboard spray paint to cover wine bottles and glasses then writing on them, but these labels would be cute too!

Do you have your recipe for the lemoncello?

thanks for sharing

Jordan July 13, 2011 at 9:41 am

limoncello made with vodka? I’ll have to try that sometime, I bet it’s delicious. I always make mine with everclear. Your labels look great!

Pretty. Good. Food. July 13, 2011 at 5:04 pm

Oh man….I am LOVING this !

John July 15, 2011 at 6:54 am

looks like a paid post

Matt July 15, 2011 at 6:58 am

John, this was a paid post indeed, check out the bottom for clarity. Thanks!

michael July 15, 2011 at 7:02 am

And you did a GREAT job, Matt.

Monica July 21, 2011 at 2:34 pm

These came out soooo nice! I would love to see your inner crafter come out more often! :) July 24, 2011 at 10:58 am

I don’t care if this is a paid post or not – those labels are adorable! And yes, Illustrator gives you much more creative wiggle room. Where did you get that cute black & white string? I’ve seen similar on the web and I love it!

Melanie@MyUnionJack July 27, 2011 at 6:09 am

Matt you rock. Seriously! I too am a closet crafter (thanks to getting a TAD too overzealous in my wedding creativity last year!) But I just want to know how someone who does crafting in only their (obviously limited) spare time can turn out such cool results!??? SO jealous! Definitely going to look into these products asap.

La Vie le Gage Couture Events Wedding Planning July 29, 2011 at 8:54 pm

I went to Cost Plus World Market and do not see the bottles at all for the lemoncello.
Any help?
Joyce Goeppinger

Yvette July 31, 2011 at 10:45 am

OMG I love, love, love limoncello and those bottles and labels and everything! Fantastic gift idea!

Gloria August 2, 2011 at 10:35 pm

Amazing! Where did you get those bottles?

Charlotte August 8, 2011 at 3:43 pm

Wow, they look fantastic! Such a professional looking gift! I wonder if those labels are available in Australia? Great job!

Jennifer @ Licious Food August 13, 2011 at 2:16 pm

love your labels! So cool and modern! Perhaps , you should do a downloadable pdf for those not graphic designer inclined :)

Thank you for sharing, makes me want to actually accomplish my goal of making limoncello as gifts for the holidays!

Anita February 6, 2012 at 7:48 pm

I absolutely love this!

Kimmie February 15, 2012 at 2:39 pm

What are these tags for the limencello called?? Can I find them on Avery’s website? Please help! :)

Cindy February 28, 2012 at 9:20 pm

I love this! Especially the Limoncello – planning a spring wedding for next year and planning to gift limoncello as our favor – could you tell me how many ounces your limoncello bottles are? I’d love to find them – but I’ve looked all over and haven’t been able to! Thanks so much for the designer eye candy!

Terra May 20, 2012 at 4:39 am

I am so curious as to where you purchased your bottles for the LIMONCELLO? I am planning my summer wedding and would love to buy some bottles that size and style. JUST LOVE all of your amazing work and creativity. BIG FAN!

Matt May 21, 2012 at 10:59 am

Hi Terra! Those bottles are no longer available unfortunately!

Juan Q. May 29, 2012 at 10:16 pm

yeah, I have some good stuff, I made up…..I want to sell it is very good and rare art work!

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