Tuesday, 13 March 2012

DIY how to make a shrink necklace

In keeping with my recent compulsion to craft I have made a little DIY of how to make my beloved Rolfy shrink necklace.

I highly recommend everyone has a play with shrink paper once in their lives as it is THE BEST THING IN THE WORLD (although a little pricey). I use white A4 inkjet shrink paper as i usually print out Photoshopped designs, but you can also draw straight onto it and there's an alternative of frosted instead of white.

Before you begin bear in mind that your design will shrink by about 50% and the colours will become darker and more saturated as it shrinks. It will also shrink roughly 20% more on it's longer side (portrait way) so you will need to either stretch your design on Photoshop or draw one side elongated. It's a bit of a trial-and-error process.

What you will need:
  • Computer (with photoshop)
  • Cutting mat
  • Scalpel
  • Scissors
  • Chain (mine's a horrible yellowy gold at the moment)
  • Jump rings
  • Chain
  • Metal cutters
  • Pliers
  • 'Plastikote' clear sealer
  • Shrink paper
  • Hole punch
Items not pictured:
  • Materials to create your deisign (paper, pens etc.)
  • Scanner
  • Printer
  • Oven gloves
  • Oven
  • Newspaper

Draw, scan and edit your design remembering to lighten and stretch it along the portrait length (as you will see below i cocked this up a fair few times).

Print out your design onto the shrink paper and cut out with a scalpel. The shrink peeps recommend you leave a white border around the edge but sod it, don't, cause it will look shit.

Punch two holes at the top of your design, aiming carefully to get close to the edge but not piercing through to it.

This is where the magic happens. Whack your design into the oven at 180° for 3 minutes.


Ok so after all that excitement don't burn yourself, take your design out and leave to cool/harden. You may have to flatten it down with a spatula.

Once cooled, spray your plastic with a few layers of Plastikote clear sealant. This acts as a varnish to prevent any marks or dirt sticking to it.

After 20 minutes drying time, add jump rings to the holes. Measure your desired necklace length and cut chain accordingly. Add clasp and YOU'RE DONE!

Reject Rolfs.

Have fun,
Helen x


  1. this is so cool! love your DIY posts!

  2. I love this!! I want to have a go! x

  3. I like the sun-burnt Rolf - HOW DARE YOU REJECT HIM

  4. Ha ha brilliant!


  5. Hi, I thought I'd ask, as it's a year later, how did you find the plastikote has worked for the piece in terms of gloss and protection?

    Many thanks


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