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Old 07-24-2004, 07:03 PM   #1
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Default My Polyshrink NIGHTMARE!!!

Well, I am trying out the It's A Girl Thing set that my upline let me borrow. Sounds innocent enough doesn't it? Read on.
I stamp the card and it looks great. Getting ready to colour and add some liquid applicate and crystal effects when I get the idea to do some polyshrink perfume bottles.
Stamp em, colour em, put in a hole and cut them out. Still with me?
I put them in the lid of a shoebox to heat them with my heat gun. Start with one. Keep in mind, they are about the size of a loonie (oh wait, there's mostly Americans here. A loonie is our one dollar coin. It's the size of a silver dollar I guess)
I start heating. They are flipping and flopping all over the place! In the box. Out of the box. FINALLY they start to curl up when one flips out onto the floor. I go to grab it and the heat gun hits the tablecloth and starts to melt the table cloth. Get the shrinky bottle off the floor, unstick the heat gun from the table cloth. Get back to work.
All three now are starting to curl after chasing them around the lid of the box for what seemed like 20 minutes. Looks like things are going to work out after all.
Wrong!!
All three pop out of the box at once! One on the table cloth and melts. One sticks in the end of the heat gun and the other fell on the floor. The cat got it, starting batting it around and now it's under the couch and I am just too ticked off to retrieve it.
"Ooooh you HAVE to get the polyshrink!" my upline said. "It's SOOO easy to use and SOOO much fun!"
So now my tablecloth has a couple of melt marks, I have to unstick the stuck piece from the heat gun and hope the cat doesn't eat the remaining one.
Remind me to call my upline tomorrow morning around 5am when the cat is up batting around that shrinky perfume bottle and acting like it's a prize catch.
I dont' think I'll be sharing this story with my stamp campers...lol
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:11 PM   #2
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Default Try the oven

You can put your stamped polyshrink in the oven and heat. That way you don't have to chase it down. Instructions come with the SU! polyshrink.

I put mine in the little melting pot that I melt UTEE in and used the heat gun. They did try to get away from me, so then I used tweezers to gently hold them still.
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:11 PM   #3
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Default PRICELESS...

you had me rolling on the floor laughing! I'm not much of a polyshrinker...would those experts please rise??
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:16 PM   #4
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NICE picture you paint. Yeah, I have a VERY long shanked screwdriver I now use just for polyshrink with my heat gun. Otherwise, I crank up the oven. Your story is oddly reminiscent of yesterday when I was using our new "Sticky Strip" (I had better become familiar with it QUICK) since I'm supposed to show 100+ demos various ways to use it at our next quarterly meeting). Just when I have all my micro beads in place (wow they're really subject to getting static-ey) I turn around to grab something and my darling furball/assistant rubs his chin on it. Now I have dozens of kitty hairs 'embellishing' my artwork. That stuff is really sticky. Really. I started over with the door closed.

Good luck on your 5 am 'wake up call'.
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:19 PM   #5
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one word- OVEN! lol That's all I use as I, too, have experienced the "jumping" of polyshrink images! The ends do curl but then eventually go down. Heat to 350 F. Give it another go! You may enjoy it the second time around! Sorry for your mishap but thanks for the laugh!
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:30 PM   #6
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You are too funny! One day you'll look back at this event and have a really good laugh...maybe not tomorrow or the next day, but eventually. I hope that your next experience is better.

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Old 07-24-2004, 07:35 PM   #7
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LOL!

I'm enjoying your word pictures!

There was a guest on Carol Duval who made a special thing to assist with polyshrink. She made a window in two pieces of corrugated cardboard and sandwiched some window screen (metal) in between. She would put the polyshrink under the screen and heat through it. Kept it in place and from jumpin' around and from curling over on itself and sticking.

Once you shrink, have a wooden block on hand to help flatten the plastic.
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:44 PM   #8
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Oh too funny!! I love how you describe your experience. I use the oven for that reason. I used to use a toaster oven. Picked it up at a yard sale for a few bucks. That worked great and didn't heat up the house too much. Wish I still had the darn thing.

Don't give up!! Try your oven this time around. You'll find that it's much easier and you just may like it.

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Old 07-24-2004, 07:47 PM   #9
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I used to try and held them down with tweezers but it seemed I could never hold it down without it leaving the mark of the tweezers. So I used............the oven !!!! Works awesome and hardly any time !

By the way, the stories were awesome !

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Old 07-24-2004, 08:09 PM   #10
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hehehe that story is just to funny.. I have never tried it yet, but it is on my list.. trying out all these neat things so that WHEN i do become a demo I will have tried it all and can demo it easier!!
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Old 07-24-2004, 09:06 PM   #11
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I use my daughters shrinky dink maker. It is very similar to an easy bake oven. I love that I can keep it right in my stamping room without making a trip to the kitchen to heat up the oven!!
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Old 07-24-2004, 09:12 PM   #12
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Oh Sheryl! I have never used polyshrink...... hmmm....... sounds like fun!!!

Thanks for the story!! (Sorry about the table cloth.....)
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Old 07-24-2004, 09:13 PM   #13
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Oh my gosh we are in the middle of renos and I really needed a laugh - Thank you!!!

I thought my burned - smelly burned fingernail was a horror story, but yours really tops that
/Thanks again
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Old 07-24-2004, 10:10 PM   #14
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I just ordered polyshrink.. your story was hysterical! Can't wait to see what happens when I try it.

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Old 07-24-2004, 10:15 PM   #15
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LOL, I agree the story is funny.

Here is what I do when i use this paper. Start your heat gun from a distance and slowly work your way into the paper. It doesn't move as much and you can see it shrinking up. I have done it before and it flew everywhere, when I realized I was probably too close to the plastic. Anyway, if you want to try the heat gun again, try that and see if it helps, otherwise, do the oven thing.

HTH.
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Old 07-24-2004, 11:20 PM   #16
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For a 1/8 inch hole, I stick the small end of my regular embossing stylus through the hole and use that to hold down the polyshrink!

Good luck!
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Old 07-25-2004, 02:32 AM   #17
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LOL!
Your story is too funny and all too familiar!

I gave up on the heat gun method and now use the oven.
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Old 07-25-2004, 03:05 AM   #18
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misselle said,"I turn around to grab something and my darling furball/assistant rubs his chin on it. Now I have dozens of kitty hairs 'embellishing' my artwork."

That's exactly why my cat is banned from my workroom. Cats can't seem to keep from getting into trouble with all that "fun" stuff.
The worst thing that ever happened to me was the time I had just finished a two page spread for my Hawaiian vacation scrapbook (Back when I did scrapbooking, before stamping took over my life.) and my cat got sick on it and totally ruined photos and all. What a mess! Cat "gack" everywhere!
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Old 07-25-2004, 03:07 AM   #19
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Perfect imagery......and I too use the toaster oven...works like a charm and if and when I have my studio (daydreams are wonderful) I will have to buy a second toaster oven or the family will be without breakfast toast!
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Old 07-25-2004, 04:53 AM   #20
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I have been using "Shrink Art" for years with my Girl Guides and although I've always used my toaster oven or regular oven to shrink it, I decided to also use my heat gun one day. It worked great but you really do need to hold it in place with an instrument. I also found that if you're doing larger pieces it's better to use the oven method.

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Old 07-25-2004, 06:03 AM   #21
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ROFL - I have days just like that.

I've used a bamboo skewer to hold my item in place. Works great. Oven sounds good too!
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Old 07-25-2004, 06:23 AM   #22
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I have determined that projects like this are called weepers. If it makes you feel the least bit like crying, you must put it away immediately. I've taught all my stamping friends about weepers, and we all agree that they happen to everyone.


I have a drawer where the weepers reside in their own little bags, waiting for me to get brave enough to try them again.

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Old 07-25-2004, 07:24 AM   #23
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Thanks for the much needed laugh on this Sunday morning. Almost better then a cup of coffee!

KERI~ Do you sleep? You are one amazing mama!

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Old 07-25-2004, 07:41 AM   #24
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Oh Erica, I slept so well last night. Cole was a little fussy at bedtime but when he did go to sleep...around eleven or so, he didn't get up for almost four hours and then slept another two and a half!!! It was so nice!
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Old 07-25-2004, 08:09 AM   #25
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ROTF!!! Your story had me cracking up !!! I have never used Polyshrink yet but have had times when NOTHING I worked on went right.

Just think, today you can look back at it all and laugh! Hee hee
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Old 07-25-2004, 08:37 AM   #26
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Default Polyshrink

I always use my embossing gun. I also always use a skinny pointed end of a skewer stick to place in the hole and it works every time. I teach this at my classes and everyone loves it. I've never tried an oven because it's not that convenient at shows, plus people love to see it shrink. I promise you won't have any problems. But thanks fo the story because it was too funny!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I also have a wooden block handy just in case I need to smooth a ruffle out!
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Old 07-25-2004, 08:41 AM   #27
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I have had the same experience! I have found that the Shrinky Dink machine works great -- nothing like a specialized tool for every purpose! You can usually get a good price on these when the after-Christmas clearance sales start.

Also, a bamboo kabob skewer works great for holding down the shrink plastic on a cookie tray or other flat surface. They're long enough so that you don't burn your fingers. If the plastic curls and gets stuck to itself, stop heating and pull the stuck bits apart, then start reheating.
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Old 07-25-2004, 09:17 AM   #28
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I use my toaster oven, it takes SECONDS to heat up...i just put a piece of a paper bag on the tray, then the poly shrink on that, curve the edge of the paper bag up then shrink away and watch them curle and bunce around from a save distance away behind the glass LOL

But i love my toaster oven to shrink my stuff!


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Old 07-25-2004, 10:06 AM   #29
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LOL....that's hysterical!!

I must try this, before I have to start demo'ing it. I'd better get the practice in! Thanks for all the tips!
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Old 07-25-2004, 10:08 AM   #30
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I love your story - if the polyshrink turns you off stamping (oh no, horrors) you have a future in writing! I have had great luck with my toaster oven for shrinking. Heats up quickly and the window lets me watch the 'action'. I am glad I have no furry assistants - the 2 legged ones under 4 ft tall are plenty enough help.
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Old 07-25-2004, 10:25 AM   #31
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So Sorry- Had to admit I was laughing out loud... (oh so sorry)... I haven't tried the polyshrink yet... haven't used it since my little girl days of playing with Shrinky Dinks!!!! I saw those in AC Moore the other day- didn't know they were still around!
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Old 07-25-2004, 11:16 AM   #32
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LOL!

All I have to say is BAMBOO SKEWER. Just like everyone has said it works fabulous to hold the stuff in place. And just so you know I didn't know that at first and I had mini campfires (from the campout set) flying everywhere.. luckily I didn't have the ruined tablecloth issue!

Eh, but you know know.. its from your failures that you will become an expert. Don't give up onthe polyshrink..lol!

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Old 07-25-2004, 12:31 PM   #33
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My first time ever stamping the demonstrator had us do polyshrink with the heat gun. She said it was SOOOOO easy and fun, and left me alone to do it on her counter...fun??? YEAH RIGHT. I ended up with a glob of twisted polyshrink. I was NOT impressed with the stuff (and I was a little irritated with the demonstrator that made me look like an idiot because she said ANYONE could do it, it was easy).
My question for you guys is...what stamps do you guys use that work well with polyshrink? anyone have samples posted?
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Old 07-25-2004, 01:05 PM   #34
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Default Polyshrink

Jen,

It's really doesn't matter what stamp set you use, but rather how large you want something to be when it's done. I'm sorry you had a bad experience with it as it is soooooo much fun. Here are a few things I've done -- some are with white and the others clear. You can color them in a variety of ways as well. I made a two step rose yesterday with the classic pads and it turned out beautiful. One day my son wanted to see what the smallest thing was we could make and we shrunk some bugs from Bugs and Slugs. I wouldn't however, recommend using an embossing gun on your countertop if it's formica. Over time, this could do damage. I always use an old cutting board or something to do it on. I've never had a problem with it twisting, just keep heating and it usually comes undone. Keep a stamp block handy and tap it if necessary.

Do a search on the site and put in polyshrink and if there are samples out there, they should come up! Yell if you have any more questions.
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Old 07-25-2004, 06:19 PM   #35
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Cute story! I have only used shrink plastic while "playing" at my upline's. It flip flopped all over and she gave me a wooden chop stick to hold it in place. It seemed to work fairly well. I have some shrink plastic but I haven't been brave enough to use it yet by myself!

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Old 07-25-2004, 09:33 PM   #36
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One fun idea is to get the large scallop tag die from Sizzix, cut one out and then stamp randomly on it. With some stamps going over the cut edge. Color it in. Then punch a hole at the top of the tag. Shrink. Add a small ball chain and you have a great size key chain.

You could also buy the biege colored shrink plastic and do some paperdolls. When they shrink they are small of enough to hang on your keychain also. The paper doll stamp I have is not a SU! stamp (SHAME ON ME!) But you could always use a die cut to get the pattern. Sizzix has a pretty good one.

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Old 07-25-2004, 10:08 PM   #37
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I TRIED to use my heatgun this weekend, and had a slightly similar situation, although nowhere near as extreme.. Let's just say that after using it on two pieces, I dcided to use the oven instead. I had 100 pieces to shrink - making pins for Girl Scouts with Girl Power set - but once the oven was already warmed up they were QUICK and no problems with curling, etc.
I think the oven or a toaster oven both seem easier than the gun.

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Old 07-26-2004, 06:26 AM   #38
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Ohhh goodness that is too funy!
Last year for Mother's Day I got this bright idea and thought I would make my mom and my mother in law a bracelet. Not even having a clue how to make a bracelet I thought I would Polyshrink Crayon Kids for as many grandchildren they each have. Ok well my mom has three (my three kids) but my m-i-l has 13. SO I go ahead I mde them all and colored them I shrunk them (individually cause my "lightbulb" wasn't on at the time) while they were "shrinking the colors ran and stayed wet. SO there goes that batch oh and I forgot to put the hole in the top. The second batch I don't know what I did, but the holes weren't big enough to get jumpers into. Ok so third times a charm and so I figured at this point I may as well make me a bracelet too. SO finally I realized that the thing sitting onmy counter top (toaster oven) would be much easier than the heat gun! Finally the third time around it worked out. So all that it took 16 of these things stamped and colored cut and shrunk three times plus I added a few more on the end. Now I have a bunch of shrunken Crayon Kids laying around unless I got rid of them. The bracelets turned out alright the beadwork and tyingthem was not fun, but both mom's loved them. My mother in law has it on her keychain off her pocketbook so she gets comments everywhere she goes and I have had to send her several replacements since a few had broken legs!
In the end all the work was worth it cause they both love them very much.
And my one niece wants one now! I only made her a card with the "mess ups" and that made her happy!
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Old 07-26-2004, 06:32 AM   #39
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Too funny I can jst picture this, I too recommend the oven.
grandmascraps is offline  
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