DIY Cactus Shrinky Dinks Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

Cactus Shrinky Dinks Lights

DIY Shrinky Dinks Cactus Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

Ever since I ordered these shrinky dinks online I’ve been dreaming and scheming of ways to use them again. I like to get the most out of my craft supplies. Plus, when the craft involves sitting and coloring you best believe I will be doing it again. And again. And again.

DIY Shrinky Dinks Cactus Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

DIY Shrinky Dinks Cactus Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

I definitely jumped on the coloring band wagon. Well, actually, Rose and I had our own little coloring train when we were in college. We bought some of those giant coloring pages they sell at A.C. Moore in the kids section and would just sit on our dorm room floor (ew) and color them in as we watched TV. I think we bought a Spongebob one and a Zoo themed one. They were great. I still have some of those coloring pages, I couldn’t bring myself to throw them away (#hoarder).

DIY Shrinky Dinks Cactus Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

DIY Cactus Shrinky Dinks Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

Then once all these awesome coloring books popped up over the past couple of years I knew I had to get one (or two or three). It totally is therapeutic to just sit and color something in. As a crafty person, it’s nice to have a craft that is mindless and simple like coloring.

DIY Cactus Shrinky Dinks Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

That’s why making these cactus light shrinky dinks was so much fun. I just got to sit and color in different cactus all day. No complaints here. I’m already thinking of other ways I can use shrinky dinks just so I have an excuse to color some more!

DIY Cactus Shrinky Dinks Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

Keep read below to find out how to make these shrinky links cactus lights:

Materials:

  • Shrinky dinks
  • Sharpies or permanent markers
  • Scissors
  • Oven
  • Parchment paper
  • Hot glue gun
  • String lights

 

Instructions:

  1. Start by drawing a cactus onto your shrinky dinks. You can either free-hand this or trace an image like I did. I chose to do several different types of cactus but feel free to just do one. For size reference my drawing on the shrinky dinks was about 5.5 inches long. You want them fairly big so you can glue them onto the lights.
  2. Color in your cactus using different sharpies.
  3. Cut out your cactus. I found that when I completely around the whole cactus – hugging the cactus the whole way – that this was more likely to curl and stick on itself in the oven. To remedy this I started to just cut mostly around the cactus but didn’t hug it and left some blank space between stems if there were multiple peaks.
  4. Pre-heat your oven to 325ºF and then place your cactus shrinky dinks on a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Put in the oven for about 3 minutes. Keep an eye on them – they will first curl up and then eventually (if all goes well) uncurl and lay flat again. This was taking about 3 minutes for me but might be shorter for your oven so just keep an eye on them.
  5. With your hot glue gun glue on two dots on the back of your cactus shrinky dink. Then firmly press onto the string lights between the actual light. Repeat this process with all of your cactus.
  6. Plug in your lights and enjoy! Just as a warning I would make sure you were always in the room when these are on and to not leave them on for a super long amount of time just because I’m not sure how the plastic will fare with the light.

 

DIY Cactus Shrinky Dinks Lights | Popcorn and ChocolateNow you just have to find a cute place to hang up your cactus shrinky dinks lights! I think I’m going to put mine around my desk. I already have my cactus piñata sitting there so it seems only appropriate to add some more cactus paraphernalia.

DIY Cactus Shrinky Dinks Lights | Popcorn and Chocolate

If you want more cactus and succulent themed DIYs/ideas check out this Pinterest board!

Cindo de mayo cactus pinata | Popcorn & Chocolate

Cactus Pinata

Cindo de mayo cactus pinata | Popcorn & ChocolateOh Cinco de Mayo, what a fun holiday. I remember the first time we celebrated Cinco de Mayo. We were abroad in London, and it was towards the end of our time there. The sun was peaking out from the clouds, and we were in good spirits and decided we wanted tacos. We had no clue it was even Cinco de Mayo. Now, let me just preface this by saying we did not cook a single thing up until this point. It had been a solid 4 months without cooking as the kitchens were deemed scary, and we thus avoided them at all costs (fyi we both were abroad in London at different locations, each with equally scary kitchens). What suddenly possessed us with the desire to finally cook? Who knows, but I speculate it was the taco fairy knocking on our stomachs telling us to celebrate Cinco de Mayo the one way we know how: to eat!Cactus Piñata with flowers | Popcorn & Chocolate That is just what we did. We threw on our running shoes (first time we used those too; the gym was deemed scary too) and jogged to the closest grocery store. Yes, we jogged, we were that excited for tacos. We jogged our way to Sainsbury’s and rushed through the store looking for all the supplies we needed. We were going to make tacos and margaritas and thus needed all the typical fixings. The store had almost everything we needed for the tacos expect the key ingredient the ground beef. We had to jog/walk our way to a different store to pick it up. We were determined.DIY Piñata shaped like a cactus | Popcorn & Chocolate Once back at my dorm, we faced our fears and made our way into the kitchen. We had to “borrow” someone’s pans to cook the beef but we managed to cook everything and had quite the feast ahead of us. We poured ourselves some celebratory margaritas and dug in. It was definitely worth the scary kitchen and all that jogging. We feasted like kings. It was only after the fact that we realized it was Cinco de Mayo so we poured ourselves a second drink and broke out the popcorn for dessert. If only we had this cilantro lime popcorn we made last year!Cactus Piñata made out of cardboard | Popcorn & ChocolatePhew what a day that was! We joke about it now but we always make sure to have something to celebrate with on Cinco de Mayo, if not to remember just how crazy we are sometimes. This year we are planning on sipping on some mango margaritas and breaking into this lovely cactus piñata. Here is how you too can make this wonderfully colorful and festive DIY cactus piñata!

Materials:

  • Cardboard
  • Poster board
  • Hot glue gun
  • Mod podge
  • Streamers
  • A friend to lend a helping hand

 

Instructions:

First, draw your cactus shape onto a big piece of cardboard (we used a cardboard box) and cut it out. Then trace the shape onto another piece of cardboard and cut that out too. This will be the front and back of your pinata!

Next you should decide how deep you want your pinata to be (ours is about 3.5 inches). Cut long strips of poster board that are 1 inch longer than the desired depth of your pinata. You will be gluing these to both sides of the cardboard cactus to form the sides of the pinata. This is when an extra set of hands is helpful. Start from the bottom and work your way up one side by putting hot glue on the cardboard edges and pressing the poster board onto the glue. Hold each piece in place for a few seconds before moving on to the next piece to make sure it doesn’t pop off. We did one segment from the bottom to the armpit on one side, then rounded our way up the arm and over the top. If you want your pinata to hang, make sure you punch two holes in the poster board that is going to go over the top before you glue it down so you can put a string through it later.

Once you’re doing the part where the arms curve in in the middle of the cactus, you’ll have to wedge the poster board in there first. We found it easier to crease the poster board a bit with the crease of the cactus to make sure that once that piece was in place, it wouldn’t pop off.

After you’ve carefully glued around your whole pinata, trim any excess poster board. Now you’re ready to start putting the streamers on! Cut strips of streamers long enough to fit around your pinata starting from the bottom. Cut into each strip every inch or so to create the fringe. Then use mod podge to attach the strip all the way around. Work your way up the pinata in whatever color pattern you want, overlapping each row with the one below it by about a half inch. Once you get to the top, thread a string through the hole if you made one to hang it, and you’re done! You’ve now got yourself an awesome cactus pinata and are now part of the #addictedtopinatas club.

DIY colorful cactus piñata | Popcorn & Chocolate

Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone! Comment below on what you like to do to celebrate! What other shapes of pinatas would you make?

Homemade pinatas | Popcorn & Chocolatep.s. here is my ever growing collection of homemade pinatas. We named the cactus Señor and the ram is Lucinda – they are bffffs now (we forced them to be). Go check out this ram I made on my Instagram!