DIY Motorcycle Badges

Inspired by Patti who made me some awesome jewelry, I just had to play with the stuff.  This is not the Shrinky Dinks your parents played with!  You can print your own designs off an ink-jet printer - and here's the best part; this shit is hard to break.  It shrinks to 1/3 it's size, but becomes 9 times thicker.

So here's my first go - the 1971 Motorcycle Shows 59 Club badge.  I've never come across it on eBay so I'm gonna say it's kinda rare.  I couldn't get a great photo of one, so I downloaded a photo off the internet and cleaned it up in Photoshop.  The font isn't a perfect match, but you can be pickier if you want.  My image is 2.25" across - and you need to lighten the image about 50% before printing.  It gets darker when it shrinks.  A lot darker.  Just follow the instructions and you'll be fine.

I had the best results with the printed side down, between two sheets of brown-bag paper.  Less curling and it didn't affect the image.  It took about 3 minutes in a toaster oven (yeah, I bought one just for this).

Here's what makes the biggest difference:  embossing powder.  It adds another layer of clear, shiny plastic.  Once your Shrinky Dink is done shrinking, it's done.  While it's still warm you can manipulate it a little - flatten it more if you need.  But if you put it back in the oven it's not going to shrink any further.

So once it's cooled off sprinkle the embossing powder (actually, it's tiny little plastic beads) all over it.  Stick it back in the oven and just keep an eye on it.  The beads will melt into one solid clear coat - maybe 30 seconds?

You can apply any pin-back style you like with some e-6000.  I know you're thinking "but it's plastic, it's going to break" - but I wasn't able to break it, and it took my friend's husband some considerable effort.  It'll look great from stage - and it's a great place-holder if you want to keep looking for an original.

1 comment:

  1. what an ingenious idea!! I MUST try this..and theirs enough images around the internet of the badges to create them all, just need to know the right sizes of which to make them i guess..


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