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How To Shrink Shrinky Dinks & An Easy Design Idea

Use our free template to create the cutest state shrinky dinks

We have a new love for a childhood favorite craft. Our whole family is super excited about shrinky dinks. You can make more advanced shrinky dinks like the design we will share or more kid-friendly designs and scribbles. No matter what, watching your design shrink is super cool!

shrinky dink state template with outlines of state and love
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What is a shrinky dink?

Shrinky dinks are plastic that when melted will size down to a smaller size. You can use #6 plastics to make your own plastic shrinky dinks. I am not sure I want to melt my own plastic and have no problem buying actual shrinks dink film.

Where can you buy shrinky dinks?

Any local craft store or online retailer should have this easy craft. Here are few landing pages for shrinky dink film so you can shop around for the best price!

Amazon: They have wide variety of clear, frosted and even colored shrinky dink films.

Michaels: Similar to the Amazon choices, but you may even save a little more if it is when you can use coupons!

Walmart: If you want a kit, they have a variety.

How to shrink shrinky dinks?

You need a heat source. The most common ways to shrink shrinky dinks is in your oven or toaster oven. A heat gun or blow dryer is also said to work. For our shrink dinks, we like to cook them on parchment paper on a cookie sheet at 325 degree F for 1 to 3 minutes. You will see the plastic curl and twist as it heats up. Wait 30 seconds after the last one is laying flat. We have yet to overcook a shrinky dink but watch the oven pretty closely while shrinking.

In this (future) post, we will test all this methods besides heat gun and will report our findings.

What do you use to color shrinky dinks?

We love using colored sharpies to create our shrinky dink designs. Do not use washable markers, as those most will wipe off. Acryclic paint and colored pencils are also a viable option. To use colored pencils make sure you are using frosted shrinky dink paper.

Kid-friendly Shrinky Dink designs

  1. Simple name writing. There is something so special about their handwriting at those younger ages.
  2. Their favorite drawing: whether a monster or flower.
  3. Simple shape cut out and scribbled with different colors. Punch a hole and create a fun Jackson Pollock-like charm.
  4. Rainbows work really well for Shrinky Dink designs.
  5. Anything goes, this is why we love shrinky dinks!

Adult Ideas for Shrinky Dinks

  1. Small charms for jewelry
  2. Fun designs for magnets
  3. Garden markers
  4. States Outlines
  5. Succulents
  6. Food drawings
  7. Simple shapes repeated
  8. Name designs
  9. More rainbows

Honestly you can draw anything you really want on your shrinky dink.

Our favorite Shrinky Dink Idea

hand holding state shrinky dink idea

We love (no pun intended) state artwork. The best part all you need is a black sharpie and our template or your own drawing. Simple trace the outline carefully and words of your choice. Cut out the shrinky drink carefully and punch a hole if you plan on hanging. These would make fun charms, keychains, Christmas ornaments, or magnets. 

Yield: Shrinky Dink

State Shrinky Dink Idea

hand holding state shrinky dink idea

Easily make a state shrinky dink using our template. Feel like a kid again with this easy craft project.

Prep Time 3 minutes
Active Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 23 minutes
Difficulty Easy
Estimated Cost under $5

Materials

Tools

Instructions

  1. Print out the state printable or sketch your own drawing.sharpie, shrink dink film and state template
  2. Place shrinky dink film on top and don't let it move.
  3. Use a sharpie to trace your drawing or template.
  4. Neatly cut-out design.scissors used to cut out shrinky dink
  5. Punch a hole if you plan to hang it.
  6. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  7. Place on parchment paper on a cookie sheet.
  8. Once the oven is heated, place a cookie sheet in for 1-3 minutes. You will see the plastic curl and twist, wait 30 seconds after it is flat.Cook shrinky dink in your regular oven at 325 degrees f
  9. Pull out of the oven.
  10. Add magnet, pin, or string.
  11. Enjoy your easy Shrinky Dink craft!

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

A few notes about cooking shrinky dinks

Don’t worry if these twist and turn. This is completely normal. We thought ours was going to touch together, but after it flipped and bent it ended up straightening out. You can see this in the picture below.

Shrinky dink in oven

Finished state shrinky dink

ohio shrinky dink next to paper template

Here you can see the size difference from the template to the actual end result of the shrinky dink.

Tip about our state template

If you would like to change the size, you could always adjust your printer settings to make it scale differently. We also only recommend printing the page you need and not all the pages (no need to waste ink). I guess you would print all the templates if you are making 50 states!

Follow us on Pinterest or Facebook for more DIY inspiration!

Now we think we need to make more easy shrinky dinks with this family-friendly craft idea.

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Deb Leingang

Saturday 3rd of July 2021

Can’t wait to try the AZ, ND, MN, & CA States as shrinks dinks

Erin

Sunday 4th of July 2021

Hi Deb! Good luck with your shrinky dink project!

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