How I make shrink plastic charms for accessories & other stuff

Even before my BGC Art Mart day, I had a feeling I would get a lot of questions about what the kitty accessories I’m selling are made of and how I make them so I put a tutorial together and had it on display in a frame on my table. (You can see part of it in @firehailtree’s instagram photo.). It turned out to be a good idea because my customers were able to understand how much care was placed into each item.  Some even asked if I sold shrink plastic because they’d like to try it out themselves! 😀

Anyway, I’d also like to share the how-tos with you. 🙂
shrink-plastic-pins-tutorial-1

1. I draw the illustrations individually on sheets of shrink plastic, mindful of the fact that the colors will darken and the drawings will shrink down to about 1/3 of its original size. This particular sheet is glossy so I roughened the surface with sandpaper so that I could draw on it with colored pencils.

2. I cut them to shape with a pair of scissors.

shrink-plastic-pins-tutorial-2

3. I shrink the pieces individually using a heat gun. This is best for complicated shapes that you want to have more control over. Otherwise you can use a toaster oven to bake multiple pieces at a time.

4. Ta-dah! The piece is now smaller, thicker, and harder than it was. After it’s cooled down, I would usually spray it with a fixative to “fix” the colored pencil drawings, after which I would apply a glaze coating.

Here’s one of my cat pins in action:

A photo posted by Cynthia Bauzon-Arre (@arncyn) on

* You may order these from my store. 😀

UPDATE (Oct.27, 2015)

I’ll be having a Shrink Plastic Crafting Workshop at Hey Kessy (Quezon City) on November 21! Please visit this link to sign up and reserve a slot.

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Life After Breakfast’s Watercolor Playdate + my shop is now open

I was recently invited to join a watercolor-themed craft soiree organized by crafter / designer Alessa Lanot, the brains and talent behind the very popular Life After Breakfast Blog, and it was quite an exhilarating experience.

LABWatercolorSwap2015
(photo from LAB)

In her invitation, Alessa said she wanted to gather some of Manila’s top female watercolor artists for a little swap and playdate. It’s been so long since I’ve actually painted along with other artists (not counting my husband of course, teehee) so naturally I was game. I was actually *floored* when I saw the works of the girls in the final list a few days before the event. Very proud to have been among this talented bunch.

We had to bring enough artworks for the swap so I brought prints of these new illustrations. The bottom two look familiar because they are re-creations of the colored pencil illustrations I did sometime ago. 🙂

A photo posted by Cynthia Bauzon-Arre (@arncyn) on

And below is my art haul from the girls. So precious. <3 You can tap on the image on Instagram to see who made the artworks.

A photo posted by Cynthia Bauzon-Arre (@arncyn) on

That’s not even half of it. We also took home vegan goodies from Alessa & her husband’s restaurant Pipino (and also got treated to a full course meal off their new menu!), a mug, notebook and magazine from Herschel, art supplies from Craft Carrot, washi tapes from Hey Kessy, non-toxic brush cleaners from Messy Bessy, and cute journals from The Lunch Break Project, to name a few. The gifts just kept on coming — it felt like Christmas came early. 🙂

Most importantly it was awesome exchanging stories about our watercolor journeys with the other girls. Everyone was nice and sweet and I especially got to bond with Lorra Elena Angbue-Te, Arlene Sy, June Digan, Megan Dino, and Frannie Wei-lookalike Fran Alvarez who even brought her “Fruitcake” book for me to sign. 😉 Also happy that I got to see an old friend, Pierra Labrador, and finally meet Macy Alcaraz whom I’ve known online since the early blogging days!

I know I should devote more space to the event but I’m running out of time at the moment… Meanwhile you can check out Life After Breakfast for even more details.

EDIT (May 3, 2015) — you can check out this CandyMag.com article for a list + links to the Instagram accounts of everyone in the swap. Yay!

***
1-Shop Images

I also wanted to share that my online shop is NOW (FINALLY) OPEN. *deep intake of breath* It’s my first time to have an actual self-operated online store (as opposed to the ones I have that are hosted on Zazzle, etc) so please bear with kinks and all. You can access it from the graphic above or from the “SHOP” link on the sidebar. 🙂

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I'm Cynthia Bauzon-Arre, a Filipino watercolor artist & graphic designer. I live in QC with my graphic novelist husband Arnold and our friendly marmalade tabby Abbas. This blog has been chronicling my life, likes, and loves since 2001. [ more ]

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