Shrink Plastic Butterfly Template Necklace by Johanna Love

$0.00

I am more of a jewelry maker than a card maker or art journaler, so I admit I didn't initially realize how useful the Book of Templates could be to my preferred medium of jewelry. Once I framed my thinking differently, a world of possibilities opened up to me on the pages within this magazine. I realized not only were the templates a fun and eclectic collection of shapes and subjects, but each template offers a variety of design inspiration for jewelry applications.

I decided to use shrink plastic since the templates are larger than what I'd normally prefer for jewelry. Shrink plastic reduces the size to about 25% of the original. Although there were so many possibilities on every page of Book of Templates, the butterfly template caught my eye. I thought it would be fun to make a necklace with it since the wings made obvious connector points.

Supplies:

  • Shrink plastic (frosted finish)
  • Scissors
  • Permanent colored markers
  • Graphite pencil
  • Clear instant glue
  • Single hole puncher
  • Butterfly Template from Book of Templates

Instructions:

Photocopy the template you want to use at 100%. Then make photocopy each at incrementally smaller sizes (75% & 50%). Take one sheet, frosted side up, put on top of largest photocopy, and use pencil to trace the butterfly. Then switch out and trace the next size down a few times. Then switch out with the smallest photocopy and trace a few times. Your shrink plastic sheet is now filled with pencil butterfly outlines.

Start filling in each butterfly with marker drawings and patterns as you see fit (I chose to use various colors of pink, and I filled each butterfly with roughly the same patterns). Be mindful that the frosted side of the plastic is the wrong side of your image, so if you want words to appear correctly on the finished product, you must write them backwards.

Carefully cut out each butterfly along the pencil outlines, being extremely cautious since the shrink plastic is very brittle at this point. Then punch a hole at the end of each wing: these holes will be for connecting jump rings to (a standard hole-punch is a perfect size to yield a good jump ring hole after shrinking).

Follow manufacturer's instructions for heating your butterflies in your toaster. A few moments after you remove them from heat, you can handle them enough to bend/shape the wings of one of the medium sized butterflies before the shrunken butterflies cool and solidify. Be sure to leave the largest butterfly flat so you can layer it with a medium one later.

Once fully cooled, take the largest butterfly and attach the bent medium sized butterfly to the front with a dab of glue to make your butterfly centerpiece 3D. Once the glue is cured 24 hours later, assemble your necklace as desired. The extra butterflies can be used in other designs to coordinate with this necklace if you end up not using them in the original necklace design.

Tips:

  1. I always like to make extras of components to help keep my design options open, but you may decide to only make exactly the number of butterflies you need for the necklace to conserve supplies.

  2. Since the shrink plastic is so brittle before heated, you may prefer to use a precision knife and cutting mat to cut out your plastic shapes.

  3. If you do not have access to a photocopier, you can trace directly out of the Book of Templates.
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I am more of a jewelry maker than a card maker or art journaler, so I admit I didn't initially realize how useful the Book of Templates could be to my preferred medium of jewelry. Once I framed my thinking differently, a world of possibilities opened up to me on the pages within this magazine. I realized not only were the templates a fun and eclectic collection of shapes and subjects, but each template offers a variety of design inspiration for jewelry applications.

I decided to use shrink plastic since the templates are larger than what I'd normally prefer for jewelry. Shrink plastic reduces the size to about 25% of the original. Although there were so many possibilities on every page of Book of Templates, the butterfly template caught my eye. I thought it would be fun to make a necklace with it since the wings made obvious connector points.

Supplies:

  • Shrink plastic (frosted finish)
  • Scissors
  • Permanent colored markers
  • Graphite pencil
  • Clear instant glue
  • Single hole puncher
  • Butterfly Template from Book of Templates

Instructions:

Photocopy the template you want to use at 100%. Then make photocopy each at incrementally smaller sizes (75% & 50%). Take one sheet, frosted side up, put on top of largest photocopy, and use pencil to trace the butterfly. Then switch out and trace the next size down a few times. Then switch out with the smallest photocopy and trace a few times. Your shrink plastic sheet is now filled with pencil butterfly outlines.

Start filling in each butterfly with marker drawings and patterns as you see fit (I chose to use various colors of pink, and I filled each butterfly with roughly the same patterns). Be mindful that the frosted side of the plastic is the wrong side of your image, so if you want words to appear correctly on the finished product, you must write them backwards.

Carefully cut out each butterfly along the pencil outlines, being extremely cautious since the shrink plastic is very brittle at this point. Then punch a hole at the end of each wing: these holes will be for connecting jump rings to (a standard hole-punch is a perfect size to yield a good jump ring hole after shrinking).

Follow manufacturer's instructions for heating your butterflies in your toaster. A few moments after you remove them from heat, you can handle them enough to bend/shape the wings of one of the medium sized butterflies before the shrunken butterflies cool and solidify. Be sure to leave the largest butterfly flat so you can layer it with a medium one later.

Once fully cooled, take the largest butterfly and attach the bent medium sized butterfly to the front with a dab of glue to make your butterfly centerpiece 3D. Once the glue is cured 24 hours later, assemble your necklace as desired. The extra butterflies can be used in other designs to coordinate with this necklace if you end up not using them in the original necklace design.

Tips:

  1. I always like to make extras of components to help keep my design options open, but you may decide to only make exactly the number of butterflies you need for the necklace to conserve supplies.

  2. Since the shrink plastic is so brittle before heated, you may prefer to use a precision knife and cutting mat to cut out your plastic shapes.

  3. If you do not have access to a photocopier, you can trace directly out of the Book of Templates.

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