Don’t Buy – D.I.Y.! A Fantastic ShinkyDink Plastic Necklace

80s huge plastic necklaces

While the economic news of the past couple of seasons has been somber & depressing, accessories have been anything but! Bold, funky, colored, and exuberant pieces crafted from unusual, low-end materials like plastic, acrylic have a larger-than-life 80’s feel but with modern, penny-pinching sensibilities – the perfect counterpoint to a sleek dress or structured, tweedy suit. Inspired by the likes of Marni and Alex + Chloe, we’ve put together this little D.I.Y. so you can outfit yourself with bold shapes cut out of shrink plastic and layered with mirror for the ultimate Eighties Revival Necklace.

This is what you’ll need:

*shrink plastic (found at the craft store or online at; we chose the pack of Ultra Thick Misty White shrink plastic for about $7)
*sheet of cuttable mirrored plastic (craft store or online at
*glue (like GOOP)
*jump rings
*chain necklace
*sheet of cardboard (if using an oven to bake the shrink plastic), or a heat gun
*awl, thick needle, or other sharp instrument



1. Cut the shrink plastic into your desired shapes (such as randomly-sized triangles) to make pendant backings. Remember: Your plastic will shrink to about 45% of its original size – so cut almost twice as large as you want the finished piece to be!

2. Bake pieces in oven (or using heat gun) according to package directions.

3. Allow to cool. When cool, trace pendant shapes onto wrong side of a sheet of mirrored plastic.

4. Cut out mirrored plastic and glue onto shrunk plastic pendant backings.

80s necklace how to


5. Using an awl, thick needle, or other sharp tool (it works best when heated), poke a hole at the top of each of your pendant pieces.

6. Add jumprings and attach to chain necklace.

VOILA! A girl can never have too many shiny, mirrored things in her life! Pair over a white tee and some dark skinny jeans for a rocker, glam-girl vibe; layer under tangled chains and rhinestones for a Renaissance revival; or let it stand on its own as a statement necklace with a gorge printed wrap dress.

Rather not do all the cutting and baking yourself? Order your pendant pieces ready-made at, where you can get your own sheets of mirrored plastic, acrylic, vinyl, or balsa wood lasercut to your specifications. String onto a necklace or earrings and enjoy your creation – or even sell your finished products through their marketplace.

TIP: Don’t be afraid to experiment further with shrink plastic! Besides making pendants, you can also form bracelets and rings, make tags and charms, craft buttons, curl it over while warm to create 3D shapes…the possibilities are only limited by your imagination. You can stamp it, paint it, airbrush it, lacquer it, decoupage it, marble it, or add crystals or heat-fix studs. It’s a really interesting medium that lends itself superbly to a variety of different designs – and allows you to mimic the look of designer accessories for very little investment.

Happy DIY’ing!

-Carly J. Cais, Contributing Editor

(as posted on FashionTribes)


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