Friday, November 15, 2013

DIY Friday: Creative Hand Made Ornaments with Shrinky Dinks

House ornaments made with Shrinky Dinks

Yes, I said "Shrinky Dinks" (or "shrink-a-dinks" as my son says). Remember that clearish plastic that you colored and baked in the oven and it turned into hard plastic drawings of cartoon rabbits and stuff? Remember?? Here is a link the the "magical world of Shrinky Dinks" if you don't.

Anyway, I don't know what gave me this idea, but I thought it would be fun to draw my house on shrinky dink plastic. And since it was the holidays, I added some bedazzling and glitter to make it look like a holiday house. And that is as close to a holiday decorated house outside as I'll get because we don't have any electricity hook-ups. See, though, I can dream of what it would look like all lit up....

I liked it! and I got so excited about how it looked, that I created some for some friends. You can do this too (and pretty quickly) even if you're not a superstar artist--trust me, I'm not either. The plastic film is translucent so you can put it over a picture of the house you're using and basically trace it. Hint: if you don't have a photo of the house, google map it and you can see the house with the satellite filter. It's not creepy if you're doing this as a gift and not as a stalker.

Here is the basic low-down, with my commentary and suggestions as usual:
1-Picture of a house to trace--this is actually too big.
1. Get the picture of a house. I suggest doing a house about 5-6 inches in it's largest dimension. Otherwise the plastic curls as it heats and shrinks and when it's too large. The plastic has a tendency to stick to itself and not uncurl, creating drama in the kitchen as you'll read below.
Color with pencils on the "furry side"
2. Use colored pencils to trace and color the house. I found that the richer the color, the better. And you don't have to use any special pencils. These are Crayola. Draw on the "furry side". This is also the side you'll be bedazzling.
Trim the excess plastic. But remember that hole! This was one I'd forgotten to do :o(
3. Once you're finished drawing and coloring, you're ready to bake it. MAKE SURE TO PUNCH A 1/4" HOLE IF YOU ARE CREATING AN ORNAMENT. I don't know why, but I could not remember this step and botched a few. You can't poke a hole after it's heated and finished. Remember my note about the curling issue? It will happen regardless. Try not to panic (as I did). Most of the times, the plastic will correct itself when the heat is evenly distributed. Sometimes the plastic still curls into itself and sticks. When it happened to me, and I reached in like Wonderwoman and uncurled it. You gotta do it. I didn't burn myself since the temperature is only about 250 degrees. Otherwise it will harden that way and all your work will be ruined.
I like the lights on the tree in this one!
4. Now add a little Christmas cheer. Using a very small applicator tip, add glue to the details you want to enhance and make "festive". Glue/sprinkle one color at a time but you don't have to wait until the glue is dry to do your next color. If you cover the glue with the glitter, it's fine. I added wreaths, garland, house lights, lights on trees, glitter on the rooftops, bushes and landscaping etc.
5. Let the glue/glitter dry overnight and you're ready to wrap!


  1. I love this project! Oh I want to do this one right now! Where do you get your shrinky plastic?

  2. Wow great idea! So pretty :) Can't wait to try it out and do it in a variety of photos! :)


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