Make Your Own Metal Tags for Your Herb Garden

Metal tags for herb garden

Do you remember seeing those adorable metal tags that were part of my last post on  how to build a window box to be used as a herb garden.  The final decorative touches to the box included metal tags labeling the herbs in the planter. They were so easy to make, I figured you’d like the tutorial.

herb kitchen garden final

  • One small section of air ducting
  • Metal cutting scissors  (tin snips)
  • Gloves
  • File
  • Sanding block
  • 1/8″ stamping set
  • Hammer
  • Hole punch
  • Fine point Sharpie
  • The silhouettes for this project can be found HERE.
  • Optional: dark stain

Originally the tags were intended to spruce up the planter with the shape of the respective herbs that were planted.  But I found out it’s been also a great way to teach my husband and kids the difference between cilantro and parsley, they tend to confuse those two!

The small section of air ducting was bought at the home center for about $3. It is not hard to cut through it.

Cut each of the printed herb leaf silhouettes and tape them onto the metal.  With the scissors, cut through the metal following the silhouettes.  The small scissors worked like a charm, it takes some time to cut through the metal on those silhouettes with scalloped edges, it was very similar to cutting through cardboard.  Be sure to wear gloves to protect your hands.

metal ducting for tags

Once you cut out all the shapes…

cutout metal leaf tags

File those sharp edges.

filing rough edges on metal tags

You can give the tags a worn feel by sanding them and rubbing them with a dark stain to achieve an aged finish.

distressing shiny metal tags

Time to begin the stamping. I used a 1/8″ stamping set, the smallest I have.  You can purchase your own set for around $10 from your local craft store.

metal stamping set

Set each letter, leaving your desired spacing.  Don’t stamp them too hard! I made that mistake at the beginning and the letters got stamped with the extra circle around it. You probably don’t want that!

stamping metal tags

Use a regular paper hole punch to create a hole to hang the tag.

punching a hole on a metal tag2

Use a fine point Sharpie to trace the stamped letters.

all herb metal tags

The tags can be hung from your herb box with a small screw or finish nail.

cilantro metal tag

I think they look like they were “mint” to be there. LOL.

mint final

They definitely “spice” up this planter.


The herbs have been growing nicely, the basil and mint are the ones with the most growth, the cilantro has had a hard time. I don’t think it’s going to make it to the end of the year! :-(

herb kitchen garden final


  ~ Learn more about Cristina ~


  1. Those are adorable! Great idea using air duct. I just used roof flashing for a product… would work for yours too! Great idea!

  2. Wow! This is a great tutorial. I would like to try this project. Fortunately, I have all the materials needed. Thanks for sharing. :-)

  3. I love this project Cristina!! Sadly, our Cilantro didn’t make it either. The basil on the other hand is doing great :)

  4. These are awesome! Such a great tutorial, Thanks for sharing!

  5. This is totally adorable!!! You never cease to amaze me with your creativity!! And the box….LOVE!!!

  6. Super cute project! I’ve never stamped metal before and really want to try it soon!

  7. I have a crafty question for you – and I’m not sure if you have an answer! But if you could help me out, I’d love it!

    Are “tin snips” the very best thing to cut metal? I’m doing a craft with some women from our church and I need to cut some metal about the thickness of flashing. Is there something better/cheaper than this? and when I go to get tin snips, are they hard to find? is there a huge variety or just one standard length? Or do I just find a friendly worker and have them help me pick out the right pair?

    Sorry, I feel like a total idiot about this. If you could help, it would make my day! (but if you can’t, I’ll still love ya anyway!)

  8. Hi Laree, When I was ready to cut out the tags, my husband gave me a full set of tin snips that he had in his stash. I didn’t like them, they were too big for this job. The only ones I felt comfortable with were those small straight scissors in the picture.
    I still have left overs of the metal ducting, so I just went to try and cut it with some other scissors and to my surprise I could cut it out with simple small Fiskars! Though you have to apply more pressure while cutting.
    I hope this helps.

  9. Thanks for the tutorial. I have had the metal stamp set at least 10 years and never really used it. I ordered a rubber mallet on Etsy and it arrived today along with some metal strips. I can’t wait to start playing.

  10. Love this idea, going to see if I can try to do this for my own garden!


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