Book Review: Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk!

Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk!: Make Stylish Shrink Plastic JewelryShrink! Shrank! Shrunk!: Make Stylish Shrink Plastic Jewelry by Kathy Sheldon

I have to admit that I was kind of shocked when I opened the package that held this book. My immediate thought was Shrinky Dinks? Jewelry? Really?

I had some Shrinky Dinks as a kid, but not many. I think they must have been too expensive and, perhaps, messy. We made some shrink plastic Christmas ornaments a few years ago, but I don’t remember the circumstances. Apparently, Shrink plastic is back and you can wear what you make to work!

There are about 30 jewelry projects in this book and they are quite interesting. They range from earrings and necklaces to cameos! Remember those? The book starts off with a history of Shrink plastic filled introduction. My favorite part of the beginning of the book was the very funny “Shrink Plastic Basics” (pg.10). She gives the scientific name, which sounds scary, but has some potential for entertaining wordplay in it. She also reassures us about the safety aspects of the plastic.

Lark books all have comprehensive materials lists and this is no exception. This is a fun list, because you can use a lot of different art supplies to decorate your projects including and inkjet printer, colored pencils and rubber stamps! The same tools you used in your other jewelry making projects can be used here. There is also a lot of talk of sanding the plastic, which scares me a little bit.

The Basics section also covers decorating your project, using scrapbook punches and coloring the designs. Ms. Sheldon covers my anxiety of the pieces curling as well.

The projects start on page 27, so you know that the “how-to” section is quite substantial. The projects come from different artists and crafters as well as Ms. Sheldon. While most of the projects were not my style, I didn’t see any that I hated. I liked the colors and styling of the Mexican Oilcloth Necklace (pg.48-49) by Jalene Hernandez. The simple look of the Simple Circle Neclace (pg.52-53) was very appealing. I really liked the idea of the Not-Your-Grandmother’s Cameo (pg.57-59) project as well. There were a few 3D projects, which shows the flexibility of the materials.

There are templates and patterns in the back as well as short biographies of the project artists and (YAY!) and index.

This whole book – colors, page layouts, style- has a fun feel to it and that made it pleasant to read.

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