Thursday, September 19, 2013

Halloween Ghost and Kitty Shrink Plastic Brooches - Free Tutorial

Here's a fun project for you to try!  These cute little Halloween brooches have been made from shrink plastic and once you see how easy they are, you'll want to make a bunch for your friends and family!

Before you begin, you'll need to download the images for the Ghost and Kitty which you can find here.
List of things you'll need:

:  A sheet of shrink plastic (I used Shrinky Dinks Bright White)
:  Fine sand paper (SandBlaster flexible finishing pad - 220 grit)
:  Coloured pencils
:  Permanent adhesive (E6000 clear)
:  1 inch brooch pins
:  Sharp pair of scissors
:  HB pencil
:  Eraser
:  Parchment paper or brown paper
:  Cookie sheet
:  Varnish 
:  Paint brush
:  Face mask (optional)
:  Q-tips
:  Pre-heated oven to 325 F (163 C)

 .:*NOTE*:.  I have found that using felt markers on the shrink plastic does not work for me.  I don't like how dark they end up once the plastic has shrunk and I find that they smear easily.  So, I did a bit of experimenting and found that by sanding the plastic sheet first, I was able to use an HB pencil to make the outline of the designs and coloured pencils to colour them in.  Without the sanding, the pencil marks did not even show up on the plastic sheet - so sand that sheet really well before you get started!  I wore a face mask while sanding so I wouldn't breathe in the dust.
Once you've sanded your sheet of plastic, trace the image onto it with your HB pencil.
Use your coloured pencils to colour the image in.  I like to keep my colouring very light because the images darken up quite a bit during the baking process.
 Once you're done colouring, cut out image - I've cut about 1.5mm away from the outline of the design.
Follow directions on your shrink plastic info sheet for baking.  Basically, you're going to place cut-out images onto cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or brown paper.  Put into pre-heated oven and bake for about 1 to 3 minutes.  You'll see the pieces start getting smaller and then curl up.  Once pieces lay flat, bake for an additional 30 seconds to complete the process.  Remove paper from cookie sheet and lightly press the images down with a folded piece of paper or pad of paper till cool (about 15 seconds).  Coat each image with a thin layer of varnish.  Allow to dry for about 10 mins and apply another coat.  Allow to dry completely.
Lightly sand back of image.  Spread a thin coat of adhesive onto brooch pin with a Q-tip and then apply adhesive to the area on the image where you'll be mounting your pin. 
Wait approximately 2 minutes before mating the two surfaces.  Position pin in place, press down for a few seconds and allow to dry.
 And there you have it!  Hope you have fun making them!
~Shelly xo