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Topic: Please help with questions about Shrinkles (Shrink Plastic)  (Read 5016 times)
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Ivy P
« on: May 06, 2013 03:46:03 AM »

Dear All,

I live in the UK. A few weeks ago while I was visiting The Range store  in Ipswich I discovered clear Shrinkles. I had never tried shrink plastic before.  I purchased a small pack and made several designs with a black permanent marker, some pens that I believed were permanent ink (I'm not sure what kind of ink they contain) , and some glitter pens (made by Papermania). They looked great after I shrank them, but after they cooled, when I touched them the ink rubbed off on my skin.

I didn't see anything in the instructions provided with the Shrinkles to try to resolve the problem. I tried looking for more information  here on Craftster. I noticed that many people on internet tutorials suggested spraying shrunk shrink plastic with varnish or sealer to protect them if they were going to be worn as jewellery, in order to prevent them from picking up grease and lint. Unfortunately nearly all of the advice and tutorials about shrink plastic I could find involved American made products that are not on sale here in the UK. We went back to the Range and couldn't find any varnish for crafts, so after talking to a sales assistant at a hardware store I decided to try spraying Plasti-kote clear sealer on the Shrinkles.

A pendant I made with a black permanent marker was ruined because the ink lines bubbled after we lightly sprayed it with the Plasti-kote . After the other pieces dried for 24 hours we found that the ink still rubbed off the Shrinkles.

We tried a second light coat of Plasti-kote and again left them for 24 hours to dry. When we tried them this morning we found that some of the pieces were okay: the ink didn't rub off from the pieces we made with small strokes of the glitter pens. Two pendants I made with larger glitter pen designs, however, still smudged when I touched them. I noticed that the ink came off when I put a little water on them.

The clear Shrinkles pack says to use only permanent ink. Does anyone have any experience making clear Shrinkles or other kinds of Shrinkles? What pens would you recommend? Should I spray with or cover the shrunk pieces with a  varnish or sealer to protect them if I intend to wear them as earrings or necklaces? If so, what would you recommend I use to varnish or seal the designs?

I am thinking of trying the Shrink Jet Shrinkles: has anyone used them? Should I cover them or spray them afterwards to protect them if I intend to wear them often? I would appreciate any advice.

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« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2013 09:08:59 PM »

Some spray varnishes/varnishes will cause permanent marker to smear.  Not sure which particular component of it does it, but it does happen.

I don't use Shrinkles - when I apply colour to clear shrink plastic (I use either Shrinky Dink, or Lucky Squirrel brand - I hate Grafix brand, and have not tried any others), I use either permanent marker or coloured pencils, or a combination of the two (marker to outline, and pencils to add colour).  But the techniques should still apply regardless of the brand of shrink plastic.  I use a fine grit sand paper and lightly sand in one direction, evenly, then across the same area at 90 degrees to add grit to the paper for the colour to adhere to.  This helps hold the colour and there is less chance of smearing.  When you shrink, the sanding becomes less apparent, and pretty much disappears when you add a clear coat to it.  I have used several light coats of clear acrylic varnish before - not the spray on (I wonder if it is the carrier that causes the running with the sprays).  Don't go too thick or it takes forever to dry, and sometimes the ink can still smear just a teeny bit too, but generally not too badly.  I find that sometimes the acrylic takes a long time to cure and can be soft for a long time (as in you can leave nail impressions, or fingerprints on the surface), especially if it is thick coats, so I am going to try with clear embossing powder and resin next time too.

You can also use permanent inks too - like Tsuikinuko's Staz On, or Ranger' Archival ink - great when working with stamps.

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« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2013 04:50:57 AM »

I use permanent markers like sharpies. As far as sealer goes, Maybe try a fixatif to seal the artwork before spraying the varnish. The fixatif seals the color.


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« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2013 12:10:30 PM »

I've had good luck with micron pens... just be sure that when you're drawing you don't drag your hand over any of the wet ink lines before they're dry.
The last ones I made with my daughter were sharipe markers & prismacolor pencils:


If they're tough enough to endure the 'kid test' then I think it may be a good way to go!  Cheesy

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