Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Make shrinky dink charms (out of number 6 plastic)

Can you believe that these charms were once take out sushi lids?

Well, it's true.  I've been saving number 6 plastic containers for awhile because I wanted to make shrinky dinks.  (Number 6 plastic is usually found in takeout containers.  You know it's number 6 because it has a "6" printed in it.)  This past weekend I finally had enough plastic lids, so I took the crapty plunge.

Want to try this crapt out too?  If so, read on:

But first, a cautionary note:
Most craft bloggers seem to say that it's ok to melt this plastic in the oven.  However, there are a few who worry about toxic fumes being released.  I went with the majority's opinion and tried out the  craft.  I just wanted to put that out there....

- Number 6 plastic
- Permanent markers
- Scissors
- Hole puncher
- Aluminum foil
- Baking sheet
- Jump ring (and jewlery pliers to apply jump ring)
- Optional:  Mod Podge or clear nail polish (see step 7)

Step 1:  Wash and dry your number 6 plastic containers.  Make sure to get rid of any sticky sticker residue.

Step 2:  Draw your design.  (I found some pendants from online stores that I liked and I doodled those images on paper first.  Then, I placed my piece of plastic over the doodles and traced and colored them.  All my original images were about 2 inches long.)

Step 4:  Cut out your images.

Step 5:  Hole punch your images.

Step 6:  Place your charms on a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil.  Bake them at 350 degrees for about 3 minutes.  (Each charm will initially bend and curl.  But then they will flatten out and stop shrinking. If a piece isn't fully flattened when you pull it out of the oven, you can always quickly push it flat yourself.)

Step 7:  Let your charms cool.  Then, add a jump ring to each one.

Another word of caution:  You have to handle the charms with care because the ink can rub off.  I tried protecting my work with Mod Podge, but got mixed results.  Some charms seemed alright, but the color rubbed off of others.  I also tried sealing some charms with clear nail polish.  But, I noticed that the nail polish smeared some of my images and not others.  So.... I'm not really sure how to seal them so that the images last.... Hrmm.... let me know if you figure anything out...

Happy crapty shrinky dinking!  Let me know if you try this out!