Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Recycled Plastic Shrinky Dinks

#6 plastic containers
Permanent Markers or Colored Pencils
Craft Punch
Hole Punch
Jump Rings and Earring Wires
Cookie Sheet
Aluminum Foil

Here's an updated version of one of our favorite crafts from the past.
1.Collect #6 plastic containers (clear containers typically from take-out food, or vegetable containers) Look for this symbol on the bottom.
2. Cut a shape out of the plastic, keep in mind that the plastic shrinks about 1/3 of the original size. Our 2" circle became about 3/4" when shrunk. If you prefer the uncolored plastic to appear white-ish then gently sand the plastic, if you like the plastic clear leave the plastic as is.
3.Draw on one side of the plastic with permanent marker, and colored pencil. Remember your art will shrink alot, so take this into account when making your design. We used a large 2 inch craft punch to cut out our designs for the earrings and then we cut a second inner circle using a 1 inch craft punch. You can also use scissors to cut out your designs. Be sure to add a regular hole punch before baking, so you can attach jump rings and earring wires.

4.Place the plastic on a thin cookie sheet (not the insulated type) covered with parchment paper or aluminum foil. We used a heat gun on low heat to shrink the plastic if you do not have a heat gun, you can bake the plastic at 350 degrees for 2- 3 minutes. Each oven is different so watch closely. As you melt the plastic, you will see the plastic curl up and then it will flatten back out, Remove from the heat source at this point. and if needed flatten further with a spatula or other flat surface. It does give off some fumes so we used a window and a fan for ventilation, or a respirator.
5.We added a jump ring to some of our shapes and strung them on ball and chain necklaces,or added earring wires. You can play around with stringing more than one design together with jump rings.
You can even make rings you need to experiment with different lengths, try 4.5-5 inches. After heating immediately remove and quickly wrap around a chapstick tube. ((an adult must do this part--it is hot and you must work fast!))

1 comment:

  1. This is SO AMAZING!!! I LOVE THIS!!! I want to do this over the weekend. Thanks for sharing!