Trying Apli’s “magic” shrinking plastic

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Today I’ve tried for the first time something that had been in my “to try list” for quite some time: “magic plastic”.

Well, the word “magic” may be a little too much here. I’m referring to this plastic sheets you can draw on, put in the oven for a few minutes, and they shrink and thicken, so you can make things like keychains, earrings, pendants, etc.

I bought this pack by Apli that comes with 4 DINA-4 sheets, because it was the only type they had at my local craft store, plus a bunch of permanent markers to draw on it.

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I must say I was a little bit disappointed when I opened the package because it clearly says “transparent”, but it’s not. It’s translucent, but it’s not transparent. (What’s with the false advertising, Apli people??)

Anyway, the plastic was ok. It’s easy to draw on it with permanent markers and you can also use color pencils, but preferably soft ones like the classic Prismacolor Softcore line.

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Here you can see my “experiments”, which are part of a bigger project I’ll be sharing soon if it pans out.

I didn’t really know how much it would shrink, so I draw a real size ruler in the plastic too. This way, for future projects, I’ll be able to foresee the final size.

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Here I had my pieces cut out and ready for the oven. I used some of the cutoffs to experiment a little further: coloring with different types of pencils, using paper punches, etc.

I preheated the oven at 135º and put the pieces inside, over a sheet of baking paper, for about 4-5 minutes. It’s very disturbing because they start to curl and twist… but after a little while they lay flat. I was mentally prepared for that, but it made me kind of anxious anyway…

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Et voilà!

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What a difference, right? It shrinks between 1/2 and 1/3 of the initial size, and it becomes about 3 mm thick.

Here you can see the comparison of the two rulers:

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I noticed some of the pieces were a little bit curved. And I though: can I flatten them applying heat? And the answer is “yes, you can”. I used my hair straightener, at the lowest setting (which is about 100º), and applied heat for 10 seconds and the pieces became totally flat.

(note: Don’t put the plastic directly between your hair straightener; protect the piece with baking paper first!!)

So, I had read that you could paint the back of your pieces with white nail polish to make the colors pop out more. But… I think this doesn’t work with this specific plastic, because it’s not really transparent… (yes, we’ve covered that before, let it go ❄️ ❄️ ❄️).

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One of the notes is painted white underneath and the other is not, but you can barely see the difference. So, I bought a white nail polish I’ll probably never use anymore!

(Note to self: look for “crafts with nail polish”)

In conclusion, the “magic” plastic was fun to try, but I’m not super thrilled with the final result. It’s too rough and coarse; and it doesn’t look very professional.

But I’ll definitely try again soon. Mainly because I have like 3 sheets and 3/4 left of plastic, so… 😅 That’s all for today.

Stay tuned if you want to know what project the little musical figures are for! I’ll just say it’s a gift, and it involves a significant amount of glitter!! ❤️ ⭐️ 🎵

One thought on “Trying Apli’s “magic” shrinking plastic

  1. Pingback: Liquid glitter notebook cover | Bubanana

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