Monday, March 3, 2014

DIY Shrinky Dinks and Alcohol Ink


So I've made a few projects with out of DIY Shrinky Dink plastic made from number 6 plastic containers (the containers I'm using are from the local grocery store's bakery department), and I've made a few projects with alcohol ink. This time, I used alcohol ink to decorate shrinky dinks. Have I exhausted all possible projects with these two media--not even remotely. They are both so easy and fun to work with.  I promise that they'll be back again.

If you want to make your own decorated plastic pendants, you'll need to start with some number 6 plastic.  I cut apart the container using an electric scissors to keep my lines as straight as possible since I was making squares and rectangles.  I punched holes at the top of each piece of plastic with a regular hole punch so the plastic could be strung up after it was shrunk.




I laid the plastic pieces out onto a cookie sheet lined with foil (it's never stuck before, but just in case).  I preheated the oven to 350 degrees and popped the plastic in for 2-3 minutes. It happens just that fast. After 2 minutes it was mostly shrunk, but I left them in another minute just to make sure they were all laying flat.


When the plastic was cooled (just a couple of minutes), I dumped them out onto my working mat to take stock.  They all shrunk to less than half their original size, and you may have noticed some wavy side pieces on my pan--they all flattened out (with slightly jagged edges, but flat nonetheless).


Next, I dripped small drops of a few different colors of alcohol inks onto my homemade applicator and stamped away until the colors mixed the way that I wanted.  I used the method that has worked in past projects of inking a few colors on each end of my applicator and then mixing them in varying amounts.  It worked well again and allowed for more variety without having to switch to new felt every few stamps.


My plastic pieces were a rainbow of colors when they were all finished, but some of the pieces were crooked or had ragged edges, so I brought out the dremel with a grinder tip and smoothed out the edges.  I even used the dremel to round the edges of a couple of the pieces.


In this photo, you can see the yellow-green piece has the top rounded and the bottom is still jagged.  The blue-ish piece above it was so crooked that I made a wavy design with the dremel.  After I was finished smoothing the pieces out, I used jump rings to string some of the pieces up on some suede cording.  I also made a couple with some hemp cord strung through the pieces with a loop.  They turned out a little more rustic looking than inking up the plastic Tim Holtz charms, but since they are made out of recycled plastic, they are quite a bit cheaper and just as fun and easy to make.


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