THings-to-make on Thursday: Keychain fail

I know. You’re thinking, “wait, wasn’t it ‘NoTHing on Thursday’?”

It was. But then I had four Tuesdays worth of tchotchkes lined up for Tuesdays and nothing for the other days of the week, and I realized this was going to be a problem.

As you might have discovered on your own, the little things are generally a lot quicker to make than bigger things like, say, quilts and sweaters.

So I’m shaking things up a little bit and going from no coherent theme on Thursdays to a coherent theme of miscellaneous things-to-make on Thursdays. (You don’t have to make them on Thursdays. Just sayin’.)

Today we will talk about key chains.

First, though, let me digress (as if I hadn’t been rambling enough as it is) to say that one of the reasons I follow so many crafting blogs is for inspiration.  Both in materials and things-to-make.  But I don’t necessarily want to follow the tutorials on those/your blogs exactly. (Part of why it is so hard to give credit where it is due.) So I see a blog post about coasters made with tiles and I say “coasters! what a good thing-to-make!”

I say this because, as you are well aware, there is more than one way to make a keychain.  I chose this as a thing-to-make when I was trying to think of personalized party favors I could make with the materials I have on hand. I didn’t have key rings, but I did have materials to make the personalized piece.

And that material is (um, was supposed to be)…

Shrinky Dink paper.*

You’ll need to exercise your graphic design muscles for this one. My new favorite graphic design tool, as a complete ignoramus at graphic design, is Picnik. Picnik is supposed to be used for photo editing, but what I do is create a template in Paint, a blank rectangle that is the size I want my finished project to be.  I then upload that picture to Picnik and go straight to the “Create” tab.

For my first try at a keychain design, I opted to make one for my third grade teacher (not a party favor) as part of her handmade-in-2011 swap package. She is retired, but still tutors, so I went for something teacherly:

Now, to turn the design into a keychain.

Here’s how it should have worked:

Print your designs on the shrinky dink paper.

Cut out the design and then cut a hole for the keyring. (On this one, I am going to cut the hole in the top hole of the notebook paper.)

Then shrink your project according to the directions on the package, insert the keyring, and you’re done!

Here’s how it DID work:

For my first try, I printed a solid color on the back of the paper so that the back wouldn’t be plain. Let’s just say that didn’t work.

The first try also ended up being pretty tiny.

The second try was apparently too big, and it didn’t shrink evenly or flat. Plus I completely mis-aimed with the hole punch and the hole for the key ring is rather close to the edge.

And it’s got this weird see-through thing going on.

But I am determined to figure this project out. It just won’t be today.

*Have I posted about something else made with Shrinky Dink paper already? Or is that one of those many weeks’ of Tuesdays posts that I have prepared and hasn’t been published yet?

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One Response to THings-to-make on Thursday: Keychain fail

  1. Nancy Craig says:

    Worked with Shrinky Dink with a room full of 8 yr olds. That may be what causes me to go catonic at the mention of SD! Good luck with your project.

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