Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Handmade gifts for pets

Sorry you didn't hear from us yesterday ... we were crafting.  Yes, that's right, CRAFTING!!!!!

I know.  Go figure.

We originally saw this idea on another blog we follow which you should check out if you have any inclination toward crafting and tutorials: One Pretty Thing.  She posts all sorts of great lists, but the fact that she was posting about pet id tags and how to make them yourself really caught our eye.  So did the fact that Martha Stewart was involved (original Martha pet ID tag tutorial here.)

So, anywoof, we thought we'd give it a try.  It went something like this:

Step One:  Remove dog from workspace.

Not sure why this picture will only load sideways, but you get the point!!!

Step Two:

Order your Shrinky Dinks here.  "Shrinky Dinks" are printable plastic sheets that you print on with your inkjet printer and then stick in the oven to create a whole host of small plastic goodies.  Since we got the idea from Martha Stewart, we went with her Pet ID Tag concept and printed her template, which we got here

Step Three:

Input whatever data you want to onto the template and print it out on a Shrinky Dink sheet.  We changed things up a bit from the original idea, and created pet gift bag tags and pet lover gift tags.  The designs start out really big.

Oh, and pardon the crinkles in the paper there.  My bad.

Step 4:

Preheat the oven to 275 - 300 degrees and cut out your designs and put them on a cookie sheet with brown paper underneath.  Don't forget to punch a hole in your cut outs -- you'll need a bigger one than you think as the hole shrinks too.  We used a regular hole punch and it worked out perfectly.

A few notes about this (learning lessons, as we like to say around here):  The tags will come out exactly as you cut them ... if you have a rough edge when you cut out your design, your finished Pet ID tag will have one too.  And, the paper is a bit rigid.  We got a crack in our blue tag when we cut it, and it did not "heal" when we shrank it.

And, again, I have no idea why this picture will not load the right way, but as always ... you get the idea .......

Step five: 

Bake your Pet ID tags, pet gift tags or whatever pet goodies you've decided to create for about 3 to 5 minutes in the oven.

A few more notes here:  They crinkle when they start heating up.  Kind of freaked us out!  We thought this was gonna be a bust but flattened ours by pressing gently with a pot holder during the cooking.  As they continued to heat, they flattened out again.  Whew.   They really do shrink alot in the process, and they get harder and thicker than you'd think.

Last step:  Attach a string, ribbon, cord, metal ring, whatever you have on hand and voila, pet gift tag, pet lover gift tag, pet ID tag and what have you, puppers.

Overall, we LOVE the shrinky dink concept.  As mentioned earlier, the little details such as how fine you cut your pieces out do show.  We've got a few more sheets and a few more ideas, so we're gonna practice a bit and we'll be back again soon to show you what else we come up with!

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