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$ $ $ $ $
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• • • •
Time
5h00

Turn a human skeleton drawing into shrink plastic skeleton earrings
I have lost my old pair of long skeleton earrings, so I decided to make some replacements, using shrink plastic. More commonly referred to as "Shrinky Dinks". The ribcage is shaped like one from long term corseting. The rest is fairly normal.

This project can take a few hours, because of all the drawing, shrinking each piece, and attaching the joints together. Take your time, and the results will be worth it.

Posted by Crafty Lady Abby from Richmond, Virginia, United States • Published See Crafty Lady Abby's 7 projects »
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  • How to make a pair of shrink plastic earrings. Shrunken Skeleton Earrings - Step 1
    Step 1

    Draw your design on the paper. Remember to make it 2x the size you want the finished piece to be. I used anatomical skeletons and skulls as a reference. I drew the skull, torso, an upper leg with patella, a lower leg with foot, an upper arm, and a lower arm with hand.

    The photo shows what the skull looks like before and after shrinking.

  • Step 2

    Using the sanding block, sand the front and back of a shiny sheet of shrink plastic. Make sure there is NO SHINY AREAS remaining. If there are, the ink will smudge. This will take a while, but it's worth it. If you have a large design, like mine, you will need to sand two sheets or more. I sanded two.

  • Step 3

    Lay a sheet of shrink plastic over the design. You will notice the white plastic is see through. Using the super fine pen, carefully trace the design onto the plastic.

  • How to make a pair of shrink plastic earrings. Shrunken Skeleton Earrings - Step 4
    Step 4

    Flip the sheet over. Trace the design you can see from the front side. I made little zig zag marks to indicate ares that needed to be filled in with black.

  • How to make a pair of shrink plastic earrings. Shrunken Skeleton Earrings - Step 5
    Step 5

    Use the Fine pen to fill in the areas you want black.

  • How to make a pair of shrink plastic earrings. Shrunken Skeleton Earrings - Step 6
    Step 6

    Carefully cut out the pieces with the small scissors.

  • How to make a pair of shrink plastic earrings. Shrunken Skeleton Earrings - Step 7
    Step 7

    Use the hole punch, to punch holes for attaching the earring hardware, and joints together with jump rings. On my design, the small Xs indicate where I have to punch.

  • Step 8

    Lay the brown paper down on your work surface. You're work surface has to be able to stand high heat. A cookie sheet on your stove top would be good.

  • Step 9

    You will do the shrinking ONE PIECE AT A TIME! Using the small scissors, carefully hold the center of your piece down. Turn your heat gun on. Mine had a heat adjustment. I put mine down to 500 degrees, but less with work too. The higher the heat, the faster the shrinking. Too high, and you might burn your piece. You don't want to do that. You will have to start over again with that piece.

  • Step 10

    If your piece sticks together while shrinking, turn off your gun and quickly unstick the areas. If it hardens too quickly, reheat and try again. This part is very HOT, so you might want to use the pliers to undo the areas.

  • Step 11

    After everything is shrunk, it's time to seal them. Using the small paint brush, paint an even coat of clear varnish on the front of each piece. After they have completely dried (about an hour), paint the other side with the varnish. If you want to use the acrylic paint, this is the time to do this. Use the acrylic paint before applying sealant, so it will adhere better.

  • Step 12

    After the pieces have dried, it's time to make them into earrings. First, we need jump rings. Using the dowel rod or skewer, wrap the wire around it several times. Using the wire nippers, clip the wire from the spool.
    Gently, pull the coiled wire off the dowel rod. Stretch the wire a bit, so the coils are spaced out a bit.

  • Step 13

    I had to do the jump ring making one at a time, because each set of skeleton joints fit together differently. Using the wire nippers, I cut different length rings off of the coil, and checked fit on different areas, until I figured out which size worked best for that joint. Use the pliers to form the cut rings into nice circles.

  • How to make a pair of shrink plastic earrings. Shrunken Skeleton Earrings - Step 14
    Step 14

    Using the 2 sets of pliers (one in each hand) open a jump ring, Put two pieces of the shrunk plastic together (in this case, the joints of the skeletons), on the ring. Using the two pliers, close the ring.

    Repeat steps 14 and 15 for each joint of the skeletons.

  • How to make a pair of shrink plastic earrings. Shrunken Skeleton Earrings - Step 15
    Step 15

    At the heads of the skeletons, I added a jump ring and an earring hook. Use the 2 pliers to help open and close the jump rings.

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Comments

Anja R.
Anja R. · Redcliffe, Queensland, AU · 1 project
brilliant Happy
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