Remember the Shrinky Dink fad in the 80's and 90's?
|photo from amazon|
I remember. I was so jealous of my friend Jessie when she got a shrinky dink set for her birthday. Those things were the coolest thing ever. Everyone had them on their backpacks and their bracelets and they even made them into earrings. All the cool kids had them. Isn't it funny what is considered cool at the time? I wonder in 20 years what fads we'll be looking back on and laughing about.
But back to shrinky dinks. They may not be as popular now as they were then...but they are still awesome. Draw on a big piece of weird plasticy paper, bake it, and it shrinks down to an awesome plastic wearable work of art...who wouldn't love that?!
Elaine found a pin on Pinterest on making DIY Shrinky Dinks and sent us her results.
The Original Pin
Can you believe that is made out of this:
Pretty cool, huh?!
Elaine told us, "I saw this pin on Pinterest and had to try it! I wasn't going to make a bracelet per se but I thought about making key chains or cellphone charms. Overall, the thing worked and I am very pleased with the results but there were a few hiccups."
|1. Image drawn in permanent marker before baking.|
2. Finished product after baking at 250 degrees.
3. Finished product vs. original image that she traced from.
Elaine had to tweak the project slightly to fit her supplies at home...but we don't think these tweaks changed the outcome too much. She didn't have any Sharpies on hand, so she used some permanent overhead projector film pens she had lying around (I love that she had those handy). Also, she didn't have parchment paper so use found a pin with similar instructions which directed her to make a tray out of aluminum foil.
Here were her hiccups with the project:
- She says that rather than taking a few minutes to shrink, it took around 30 minutes to an hour. She says, " I kept checking back to see how it was doing. I can't tell you exactly how long it takes, but the OP is right that once flattens out after curling up and shrinking it should be done." I'm thinking here that if her caption on the photo Elaine sent us is correct, that her oven temperature was low by 100 degrees. The original directions say to bake at 350 and Elaine's caption shows she baked at 250. That would account for the difference in time needed.
- The left side of her shrinky dink ended up with a funny little wave to it. "Kind of annoying seeing as everything else was straight. I think what happened was that I must have had the most minuscule dip or curve when I cut the original that when it shrank it became more pronounced."
- She said she forgot to punch holes in the plastic ahead of time. "This wasn't the fault of the pin," she said, "I was just forgetful. Next time I will definitely punch them in ahead."
- She wasn't sure how small her art would shrink...she just kinda had to eyeball it. So before you set out to make your final finished product...test out how much shrinkage you'll have by doing a test run.
Even with her hiccups, Elaine is quite pleased with how her project turned out. She says, "Over all, this is really easy to do. The plastic is actually pretty easy to cut with scissors. Next time I am going to see if I can do one picture, cut it up, and then shrink to make matching cell phone charms for me and my bf."
Thank you so much for sending us your results and tips Elaine! This would have been fun to put ornaments together for my tree for Christmas/New Years...I'll have to pin it for next year.