This was my submission to the SYTYC contest for the theme “leaves.” Here is the tutorial in case you are interested! Thanks all of you who voted!
Everything is cuter when it is miniature. This “leaves” necklace is made from a bracelet “end clasp” and teeny tiny shrinky dink shapes. Each tiny leaf has been carefully cut out, hand painted, and then shrunken to its small size. Here they are on my little child manny:
I hand-carved the little leaf veins, added jump rings and attached them all to a “charm ring” made from one end of a bracelet clasp that you can find at any craft store. Each leaf charm is less than 1/2” long.
Step 1: Draw your leaf shapes onto the “rough” side of the Shrinky Dink paper using a light colored pencil.
Step 2: Score the shapes with an craft knife first…..
….and then carefully cut them out using detail scissors.
Step 3: Paint the top of the leaf shapes with a sheer coat of metallic acrylic paint and then trace the exterior edges and leaf veins with a slightly thicker coat of paint.
Here are the colors I used….I prefer Golden’s Fluid Acrylics because they are thin, translucent and great for glazing.
Step 4: Punch a small 1/8″ hole into the top of each leaf.
Step 5 : For each leaf, glue a metal brad or nail to a thin piece of cardboard as shown below….
…and place one leaf on each brad/nail. The nail will keep your hole punch from closing and will allow the shrinky dink to stay flat.
Step 6: Heat your oven to 350 degrees and place the cardboard on to a baking sheet and into the oven. The pieces will curl up and shrink around each brad/nail….and when they flatten back out you know that they are finished! Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Step 7: Remove the nails from the leaves. The leaves will have tightened around each one so you might have to twist the nails in order to remove. The paint will thicken and you will need to lightly sand some of it off.
Step 8: Use a craft knife to texture the edges and leaf veins. You might want to apply another sheer layer of metallic paint so that it can seep into the carvings. Spray or paint your leaves with a clear gloss acrylic sealer.
Attach a small jump ring to each leaf and attach to a bracelet “end clasp” (the kind shaped like a ring). String onto your necklace! Now you can make earrings or a charm bracelet to match!