Tuesday, March 10, 2009

First Try

I recently found a tutorial at CraftStylish on Shrink Plastic Buttons, written by Susan Beal (http://www.craftstylish.com/item/42355/how-to-make-your-own-shrink-art-buttons). It seemed so simple, I was intrigued. I used frosted clear shrink plastic sheets, a 1-1/2" round punch, a variety of colored Sharpie markers, and a regular hole punch. Here's how it looked after I colored the rough side of the plastic with the markers.

Then I used the 1-1/2" paper punch to cut out the shapes.

I cut the "thread" holes with a regular hole punch (1/4"). When I punched them out, they all looked lop-sided and uneven, but it didn't seem to matter when the buttons were finished.

I put them in a 325-degree oven and watched them for a couple of minutes (the whole process took about 3 minutes). The instructions that came with my plastic instructed me to place the plastic on a piece of a brown paper grocery bag instead of aluminum foil as in Susan Beal's article, so that's what I did. They curled up a little while in the oven, and although I followed my instructions by pressing on them with a pad of paper for about 15 seconds while they cooled to flatten them, I don't think I really needed to do that. They seemed to flatten well on their own. Here's what they looked like when I first took them from the oven.

And here are a few of my finished buttons (each about 1/2" in diameter). alongside a couple of the unfinished ones. They sure do shrink! I just love my first results. I think this is going to have to be a craft that's a keeper!

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