After seeing my little post on clip art shrink plastic buttons last week, Kerrie, aka Antikva, contacted me. She wrote:
Hi Cyndi, I also make art buttons from shrink plastic :) I hope you don't mind but to save you some time/money I thought I'd help out with some tips.Do I MIND? LOL!! I was so grateful that I was speechless. This is the best part of the internet to my way of thinking...it allows us to learn about things that we didn't even know we wanted to learn about. And it enables wonderful people like Kerrie to share her experience and the wisdom she has gained. So no, I never mind being contacted about tips and techniques, corrections of the way I'm doing something, or practically anything else you'd like to share!
Kerrie sent so much great info that I'm going to break it up into two posts. I encourage you to visit her site too...she's got so much more going on there than just buttons. About herself, Kerrie writes, "I fling paint & gold and where it lands is my current project. Sometimes it's on artwork or a handmade book, sometimes on a handmade button."
Antikva on Facebook
Sharpies are fairly good as well [as Zig Millennium] but some colours do fade after a few washes. Although, I have to say I like the effect, it ends up sort of shabby chic style. But if they're sealed (I brush on decoupage varnish), after 24 hours there is really no difference between Zig pens and Sharpies. Micron pens are useless on it though. Of course not for the frosted look as the varnish takes that away.
If you want to do a non-reverse version, I sand (300+ grit, don't use black glass sanding sheets as black marks show up after baking) my plastic sheet lightly before circle cutting, you have to sand both directions though and evenly. I also use pastels, colouring pencils and also watercolour pencils, once I put the colour on I rub it all over with a soft linen fabric so it's even for the base colour. For the watercolour pencils, I dampen a brush so it's just damp and then kind of swirl it around to get the look I want.
The inkjet plastic version of shrink plastic so far has yellowed when baking :( and often became brittle/rubbery straight out of the oven, so I'd only recommend that for aged or distressed looks (I made monogrammed hearts for my daughters wedding invites) . I use Grafix brand, so perhaps a different brand might work fine, I am limited over here in Australia with brands :(
If you want to have a look, I have some online on my facebook page in my photo albums. I call mine doodlebutz :) I'm currently working on Indian henna style designs, paisley patterns and quilt patterns for my next batch.
The rest of Kerrie's advice will be posted on Wednesday!
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I already bought the shrink plastic after I saw your buttons, Cyndi, so I'm really happy to know more about using it before I dive in!