104 Days of Summer Vacation: Shrinking

Well, I always thought this stuff was pretty neat when I was a kid.  It was called Shrink A Dink.  You would color this stuff and then it would shrink in the oven.  Well, I found a material that can do that.  It is called PolyShrink: artist’s grade shrink plastic.  I used the Translucent variety to create my business card.  It shrinks to 45% of its original size.

My PolyShrink Business Card

1. Make A One Of A Kind Business Card For Your Blog

I thought it would be cool if I had a business card that I could use as an advertisement and was made out of something unusual.  I found that if I used a 8″ x 6″ rectangle piece it would shrink to 2 1/2″ by 3 1/3″.  I little trimming is involved afterwards, depending on the amount of heat given.  I’m still playing with the materials. Save the extras (keep reading for why). Here are my steps for using this material.


  • Cut out the size you want, remember it shrinks
  • Draw your design with a sharpie marker
  • Cut out any shapes you want, I used an exact’o knife.
  • Add acrylic paint (really nifty texture when you shrink it)
  • Use an oven or a heat gun to shrink the material to the size you want it
  • Hand out to others

Here is my Youtube video on using the PolyShrink material.

2. Make Your Own Stuff

Remember saving the extras, here is why.  I give my extras sections to my daughter so that she can design her own pictures and then shrink them.  I help with the shrinking part.

Couple of tips when using these materials

  • If you want to have a hole to hang your artwork, punch a hole in it with a hole puncher and put your material through, before shrinking.  It will shrink around it.
  • Use a permanent marker, the colors will get darker once you shrink it.
  • Don’t touch it when it’s still hot.  What a minute or so.
  • If you want it flatter, put it between a piece of paper and squish it in a book while it is still hot.  Just don’t touch.
  • If you don’t have a heat gun, use an oven.

3. Visit a Poly Shrink Website

PolyShrink can be found at www.luckysquirrel.com.  This website is nifty because there are all kinds of projects to use with this material.  The possibilities are endless.  There is also a gallery section for student work. My next order of business is to try the jewelry they suggest.  They give directions on how to create your own beads.

4. How Many Shrinks

A challenge for you, count how many times I used the word “shrink” in any form in this blog.  Post your answer in the comment section.  Or let me know of your blog with your shrinks.

-Mrs. Berry

104 Days of Summer Vacation: Finger-painting

1. Paint a flower at 6 in the morning

Small Rose Painting

I woke up early this morning on my first Monday of summer vacation.  I was awoken by the fussiness of the little one.  I calculated that since I was up why not paint.  So I made a little painting.

Well, it wasn’t too long after my daughters wanted to join in.  Now, my youngest (17 month old) decided to take a brush and swish her brush in the water too.  Then she thought it might be fun to dip the brush in the paint too.  I’m thinking to myself, “that’s cute.”  Well, not two seconds later her hand is in the paint that is on the pallet.  Now mind you it’s acrylic paint.  Not so cute anymore.  I quick grab some baby wipes and take the paint off her hand, clothing, table, and face.  Goodness it was all over before you could blink.

2. Finger-paint

After getting her all cleaned up I thought why not let her finger-paint with washable finger-paint outside.  I did that because the look on her face while she was getting her fingers into the paint was priceless.  Naturally, being an art teacher I have that stuff handy.  We go outside and I open the jars and let her have at it.  What a fun mess.  I made a video for finger-painting with a toddler.


  • Washable finger-paint
  • Paper 12 x 12
  • 1 toddler
  • 1 understanding parent
  • 1 bath (to wash afterwards)
  • 1 camera

 3. Make a scrapbook page

I am waiting for her picture to dry so I can make a scrap-booking page of her first painting.  The painting is going to be the background and the pictures of her finger-painting will go on top.


“Life is Messy.  Get into Art!”

-Mrs. Berry

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