As usual I’m running behind on the holiday calendar and apparently Mother’s day is this weekend. Today I needed a quick craft to make that would make grandmothers swoon and momma’s quietly weep. Ok so I didn’t want to make mom’s weep but you know what I’m talking about if you’re a mom. It’s something about your child presenting you with something that they’ve drawn with their own hands that just makes you a little teary eyed.
This is the perfect craft for preserving the sweet memories of stick people and colorful hearts. The best part is that it even works for toddlers that just scribble. Scribbles are important too!
The good news is that they are so easy to make that you still have time to do it before Mother’s day. It’s also a good option for those of you planning a summer full of crafts with your kids since this spans all ages and it’s fun for adults to make too. It’s really fun for the kids to watch the Shrinky Dinks in the oven as they curl up and shrink.
To make these you will need a few supplies.
I bought bright white shrinky dink paper at Michael’s craft store, a package of assorted colored sharpies, and some dyed natural hemp cord. You will also need a hole punch or sharp knife to cut out a hole.
Start by tracing around a small cup with a pencil to make several different templates for the children to color inside of. I got about 4 circles out of each sheet of shrinky dink paper. The circles may seem really big compared to what size necklace you want but you need to remember that shrinky dink paper shrinks about 40%. I made a necklace first to find the right size cup that I wanted for the pendants.
Don’t cut the circles out yet, let them color it before you cut it out to make it easier for small hands to handle and to keep your table clean.
I also put a large piece of wax paper under the resident toddler’s paper just in case she went extra wild, which she did.
After they finish coloring it, cut out the circles and preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Now use your hole punch to make an extra wide hole by punching three holes connected. If you just do one hole, it will be too small for the hemp cord.
Lay the shrinky dink circles on a cookie sheet topped with parchment paper and stick it in the oven after it has been preheated.
At first they will stay flat and then as they warm they start curling up and it looks like they will get stuck but they don’t.
After they curl up they lay back flat, noticeably smaller. Leave them in the oven for 10-20 more seconds and then pull them out. It should not take more than three minutes, watch them carefully.
Once you pull them out of the oven make sure they are all flat, pressing down any lumps carefully while it’s still hot.
Attach the hemp cord by threading a loop through the hole and then pulling the tails of the cord through the loop and pulling tight. Now just tie it off on the ends, making sure to leave enough cord to pull on over your head.
Then you’ll have wonderful memories preserved in a perfect necklace. The girls each made one of these for me and I surprised them with one that I made for each of them. They colored both sides of the shrinky dink paper while I colored one side and wrote a message to each of them on the other side.
Then let your kids present it to the important woman in your life and watch them swoon.