Fun with the Shrinky Dink Machine

It's Alive!!

The Shrinky Dink Machine was a gift from my mom, many, many moons ago. It’s made it through 3 moves and 2 states. Yet it never saw the light of day until this month.

I was rearranging my craft nook (located in a large closet in the guest room) for the bazillionith time, trying to find balance between working space & displaying cute and wonderful things. The eternal form vs. function battle royale was happening, but on a less grand scale. See, like most of my craft spaces over the years, items have a way of…creeping out…and sprawling. Kind of like when the blob- the 80s version- starts small then starts to take over that movie theater? Wait, or was that “The Stuff”? Hmm. In my memory it looks more like grape jelly than evil, possessed marshmallow fluff…but I digress. Cheeky craft supplies. The Shrinky Dink machine had found itself in a hidden away corner under the desk, somewhat covered in fabric scraps and polyester fiberfill runaways. So I pulled it out and set it aside with a dusty pile of other forgotten supplies to a better home:  My ikea sideboard. Man that thing has been good to me. It has served me loyally since ’04, and been everything from a food pantry, to a workbench, to a temporary changing table , and now, it had recently become the housing for Jellybean’s arts & crafts supplies, as well as craft supply overflow.

Weeks later, while fetching more paper for the mini-artist out of the sideboard, I came across the machine again. I realized I had just about every thing I needed to shrinky dink. Yep, i’m using it as a verb. Deal with it. there’s gonna be more of that coming up. Then I saw this post from Heidi Kenney’s blog a week later. I deemed it a crafty sign.

The machine came with a few sheets of the shrinky dink film. I also had a separate pack of the film, as well as a pack of some sort of off brand shrinky dink film that I don’t quite remember buying (so that means it was way before I was broke). I followed the instructions: I screwed in the light bulb, turned the machine on, & let it warm up.

everything laid out before shrinky-dinking

The night before, I made sketches of the drawings I wanted to test. I taped the sketch paper to the film and used colored pencils, per the instructions recommendations, to trace and color on the rough side of the film to make the pictures. After I filled up a page, I cut around each design and put them in a box so I wouldn’t lose them.

rarin to go

After the regulation 30 min warm up period, I put my first film on one of the 2 trays the machine came with, and slid it on in.


Important notes before shrinkying your dink (whether you use the machine or any other heating method):

  • if you want to make words, remember to draw it backwards on the rough side-the smooth side will be the front when all is said and done.
  • are you going to be hanging your dinks? Be sure to punch holes in them BEFORE you shink them. I repeat, BEFORE. and make the hole bigger than you think you’ll need. Remember, the hole will shrink, too.

It only takes a few minutes for the shrinking to happen. The instruction packet recommends 3-5 minutes. I don’t know who came up with the idea for the viewing window, but they deserve a cookie. It was really fun to watch them shrink down through the little viewfinder window while singing “she blinded me with science”. Honestly, it’s kind of hard not to when you’re harnessing the power, albeit low-level heat from a light bulb.

Anyway, once they’ve shrunk completely, the tray gets slid over to the cooling chamber, with the help of the handy tray nudger stick thing that comes with the machine. And once they’re nice and cool? Presto!

lil lovelies in hand

Good times had by all 🙂 I’ll def be doing these again soon! Here are some more photos from the adventure:


this makes me laugh in a very genuine way. good times.


I don’t ask for much…other than bubble tea, green tea lattes (or lattes in general…or anything iced), or toys, or craft supplies…hmm. maybe i do as for a lot. ok lemme start over.

I ask for a lot. I know, I have wants. But in my best Morrissey impression, please please please let me get what i want this time. and this time it’s this bike. Electra Bike’s Gypsy 3i Cruiser. I mean, look at the basket!! That’s how I want to cruise around town with the jellybean in tow. *le sigh*

Salty Not Sweet Handmade Boutique Reopening & The Great Reveal!

So what have I been doing the first half of 2011, you may ask? I was busy…being awesome. Besides watching the wee one become a real kid (seriously, when did she get so big??) and creating smaller plushes (bunnipus’), I was busy making a huge project for….
So last Saturday, May 21st, the Salty ladies re-opened their wonderful shop in Ohio City (2074 W. 25th) with a grand opening par-tay! The hubs & I went to show our support….and to see the window art installation plush they so kindly displayed for their big event!

here’s me feeling dorky standing in front of it
and again, me feeling dorky, standing behind it…with a celebratory Yuengling.
stay classy.
Everything looked so great in the shop! There were all sort of great handmade goods, new vintage pieces, products showing Ohio some love, cute jewelry, super yummy smelling Terre Verde Soap & Candle Co. products, letterpress/handmade (and hilarious) cards…the list goes on!

We stayed long enough for me to snag a pair of button earrings & record hair clips, though I had my eye on so much more. Alas, we had a babysitter to relieve & a bambina to watch over. I plan on going back really, really soon.

It’s great to see that area of town getting a facelift & much needed economic boost. I’m also partial to that area since we lived in Ohio City for a short period of time right after our big move from Philly (where I shortly discovered a month later I was expecting…but that’s a story for another time & another blog.)

If you live in the Cleveland area, I suggest you get your tushes down to see the shop. It’s only a block away from the historic West Side Market and right next door to the equally cool Room Service shop.

Oh, and after the plushes have run their course in the windows, they will be available for sale through the shop. Just want to put that out there 🙂

Happy New Year!!

bhc 3
Originally uploaded by sweetfructose

Ok so I may be a little late, but if it helps i’ve been posting a lot…in my mind. It just never quite makes it onto the interwebs. Teehee. anyways, I’ve been crazy busy, not only with the wee queen jellybean, but with a big crazyawesome project. so stay tuned.

For now, here are my bunnypus’. Handsewn in the first 2 weeks of the year. My resolution this year was to knock out 2 creations in the first month, and the rest of the year, use a vision board for short and long term goals. Done and Done.

More good stuff to come! xoxo

Plush You Seattle 10.08.10

Is it okay if I get mushy? well, okay, allow me a little mush. I feel really, really fortunate to not only have been accepted once, but twice to Plush You in Seattle. *sniffle*, sigh. My bambina was still crawling about, still formulating her plan to take over the world. And now? well, let’s just say that the old adage of children being like the sea & never turning your back on either, still rings true. Okay, so I heard it from Kindergarten Cop, it’s no less true.

If you are in the Seattle area, the Plush You! Seattle show opens tonight, October 8th, with a sure to be funtimes opening party at Schmancy (1938 2nd Avenue) from 5pm to 9pm. The show will run for a month, until November 11th. Amazing plushies from over 100 artists from around the world will be on display at Fancy, Schmancy, & Nancy. Last year, my plush showed at Bluebottle Gallery, and this year, my sweet treats will be showing at Nancy, Schmancy’s sister store. If you cannot make it, never fear, you can at least view my submissions HERE, on my flickr set. Though if you do find yourself there, PICTURES, Please!! I’ll be your best friend, or at least I’ll be that friend who doesn’t post weird passive aggressive messages in her Facebook status & doesn’t clog up your timeline with items about Farmville.

I wish I could be there in person, but with a wee person with a runny nose & a move on the horizon, it was a no go. Maybe one day I’ll have ficticious free time & someone else’s bank account to descend on Seattle & buy everything in Schmancy…and Big Fun. One can dream 🙂

X-posted from cinnamonsugarhearts

meet hubbabubbapus

meet hubbabubbapus
Originally uploaded by sweetfructose

octopus gumball eating machine. he’s got a gold front sweettooth for all things yummy, even if they kinda look like him. makes him no nevermind. you are what you eat, and one day he popped his top. at least he’ll always have his sweet gummy octoballs company, and a safety lolli for any drops in sugar levels


Originally uploaded by sweetfructose

furry monster coming soon to the shop 🙂


coming soon!


mmmm…my name is franz. i’m a delicious, char-grilled cephalopod.
fresh lettuce, juicy tomatoes, melted cheese…mmm, how could you not love me?
wait..wait…that wasn’t an invitation to a bite!!!

oh no!
phew, back on the plate, but still delicious.