I finally found it! I found the magical plastic!
After raiding the recycling bins of many friends (well, really just one friend), I finally found #6 plastic. Using this great tutorial, I made my very own shrinky bracelet.
And it’s so easy to make your own!
Well, it’s sort of easy. I ended up messing up my first batch because the holes weren’t big enough and I took the pieces out of the oven too soon…
1. Find your plastic. Look for the number inside the triangle on plastic containers and make sure it says 6. I found my plastic at Coldstone. Actually I’d been searching high and low for #6 plastic and didn’t even notice the cups; a friend pointed it out to me. Keep in mind that plastic containers with flat surfaces will shrink better than round surfaces, so chose a box over a cup.
2. Cut your beads. They’ll shrink to about a third of the size, so plan accordingly.
3. Color your beads. (Steps 2 and 3 can be switched up. Totally up to you.) Using permanent markers, draw pictures or designs on your plastic. I drew sail boats and anchors and stripes on mine to match my outfit.
4. Punch holes. Use a standard hole punch to punch holes. You can also round the edges with a nail clipper so they won’t be so sharp.
|In my first batch, I used a push pin to poke holes, but the holes were way too small once they shrunk. Use a hole punch! I messed up so you don’t have to!|
5. Bake. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Place beads on a lined cookie sheet and place in the oven. All of the tutorials I read said the plastic would curl after about 30 seconds, but mine took 45 seconds – 1 minute. Just be patient. Once they start to flatten again, you can pull them out. While they’re still hot, you can press them flat. Just be careful, because they’re hot!
|My first batch didn’t turn out too great. I took them out of the oven too early and didn’t flatten them soon enough.|
|So I started again with batch two. (The waves from the cup ended up going away once the plastic shrunk.)|
6. Make your bracelet. I strung my beads together with stretchy cord, but you could also attach them with jump rings or anything else. Just make it your own!