As much as possible, I want my son to be involved in the crafty gifts we give for holidays. This is a fun way for Dad to wear something special from the kiddos to work that's a little more subtle than a puffy paint "Best Dad Ever" t-shirt or a kid-painted tie.
- Shrink Film
- Cuff Links Blanks
- Permanent markers, watercolors or colored pencils
- Scissors or craft cutter (I used my Cricut Mini)
- E-6000 Craft Adhesive
- Mod Podge Dimensional Magic
- Scrap of styrofoam or old egg carton
PRO TIP: Every time you open a new package of shrink film, make a ruler by marking out 1 inch and half-inch marks down the length of one side of a sheet of shrink film - then shrink it.
Want something 2 inches in diameter? Use your new ruler to "measure" against a regular ruler. If your shrinky ruler says 5, you will need a piece of shrink film 5 inches long to end up with a shrunk 2 inch object.
Step 1: Measure it
Use your shrinky ruler to determine the how large your circle need to be cut in order to get 5/8 inch finished circles. My shrinky ruler said I needed to cut 1.5 inch circles. I cut mine out with my Cricut Mini (blade depth set to 6, speed 3, pressure 5) but you can also find any round household object that is the correct diameter and trace it onto the shrink film
Step 2: Sand it
Use a fine grid sanding block to rub over the surface of the shrink film to remove any shine. This will help your coloring medium stick. I did this while it was on the cricut mat. Once sanded, you can cut out your circles using your Cricut or scissors.
Step 3: Decorate
Allow your child to decorate the circles with permanent markers, watercolors or color pencils. Do NOT use crayons, pastels or anything with a wax base. We chose sharpies for the color quality.
PRO TIP: If you are cutting circles with a Cricut, allow the machine to cut the circles but before removing them from the mat, let your child color them. I used some washi tape and a piece of printer paper to tape off the rest of the sheet so I could save it for a different use later.
Step 4: Shrink it
Set your oven and bake the colored shrink shapes following package instructions. Allow to cool completely before moving on to step 5.
Step 5: Glue it
Use E-6000 adhesive to glue the shrunk circles to the cufflink bases. Allow glue to dry completely.
Step 6: Make it pretty
Get cufflinks to stand upright, circle side up and level. To do this, poke the bases into a piece of styrofoam or through holes punched in a used egg carton. Use Dimensional Magic to cover whole surface of circles and allow to set at least 3 hours or overnight. This will give them the pretty glazed look of enamel but in an easy-to-use non-toxic product.
Step 7: Give them to Dad
Do you like this post? Consider subscribing to our weekly newsletter!