Shrink Dinks were invented in 1973 by two mothers from Wisconsin, as a Cub Scout project with their sons. For those who don’t know, they are a children’s toy and activity kit consisting of large flexible sheets which, when heated in an oven, shrink to small hard plates without altering their color or shape. They were super popular in the 1980s. Most sets are pre-painted with outline images of popular children’s characters or other subjects, which are often coloured in before baking. But today I’m going to show you how to personalise your own custom designs. They are great as gifts or special occasions and are a great project to do with the kids!
Now just a little tip: The film shrinks by about 50%, so draw your image bigger than the desired finished size. Now we are going to cut out our design with scissors or a craft knife. Since we are turning these into key chains use a hole punch PRIOR to baking. Line a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Lay your design on the parchment paper. Cover your design with another piece of parchment paper to prevent the film sticking to itself when it curls.
Here’s how you can get started!
You Will Need:
- • Shrinky Dink film
- • Sharpie markers
- • parchment paper
- • cookie sheet
- • scissors
1. Preheat oven to 300-350 degrees F. For large designs it is best to bake them at a lower temperature to slow the shrinking process and prevent excessive curling.
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2. Trace or freehand a design onto the film.
(Tip: Put shrinky dink paper onto a piece of white paper so that it is easier to see what you are drawing. Keep in mind that the film shrinks by about 50%, so draw your image bigger than the desired finished size.)
3. Cut out your design with scissors or a craft knife.
4. Use a hole punch to add hole for keyring PRIOR to baking.
5. Line a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Lay your design on the parchment paper. Cover your design with another piece of parchment paper to prevent the film sticking to itself when it curls.
6. Bake for 2-3 minutes. Do not remove from the oven until film has flattened back out. If there is a slight curl, use a spatula to flatten it out. Allow to cool before removing it from the pan.
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