Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Make It Monday: Crayons

This is a project that I had been thinking about doing for weeks. I was planning to use our silicone ice cube trays and broken pieces of crayons. As it turned out, my niece bought the kids a Crayola Crayon Maker for Christmas. They were very excited. The idea of melting crayons in the oven was no longer thrilling to them. So, I gathered the crayons and had Jake and Alyssa peel all the paper off.  I took the machine out of the box and began reading the directions. Step 1: Installing the Light Bulb. Light bulb, light bulb . . . there's no light bulb.  I look at the box: Requires Bulb. Oops. This is why you're supposed to read the directions before starting a project. Back to Plan A, silicone trays.

By this point, the kids had tired of peeling crayons, so I finished by myself. (This was definitely not high on the excitement chart.) While the oven was heating to 400° F, we broke the crayons into small pieces and placed them in the silicone trays.  I would suggest separating the colors as you peel them. We had to test the purples, blues, and blacks to see which they were. That was a perfect job for Alyssa though, as she "tested" every crayon. You can make theme colored crayons (red and green for Christmas, pink and red for Valentine's, shades of blue for the sky or greens for grass.)

Making sure they are red.

Zachy getting into Mommy's purse and eating mints while she's distracted.

Ready to be melted.

Then, it was time to melt them down into our new creations. The directions said to keep them in the oven for 5-10 minutes, until melted. I checked the tray after 3 minutes to get a picture. I also took them out after 3 minutes, when I noticed the melted tray and saw the smoke. My tray must be rubber and not silicone. Oops. I used a plastic knife to try to mix the semi-melted crayons so they would meld together and be usable.

Naively sitting in the heat.

After 3 minutes at 400° F.

Somewhat Combined.
We popped them out of the tray after they cooled. Only 3 of them broke. Those pieces can be used next time we do this. The crayons actually look good (as long as you don't flip them over!) They work well too. The kids had fun coloring with them and seeing the swirl of colors on the page.

This picture just makes me laugh. I told Jake, "Let me see your handsome face." He immediately turned around looking like this. I snapped the picture and asked what he was doing. He replied, "Showing you my hands and face."

Jake's Display
We learned a few tips for next time: drop the temperature down a bit, use an X-Acto knife to get the paper off,  use a muffin tin lined with foil or melt the crayons first and pour it into candy or soap molds, and (most importantly) don't put a rubber tray in the oven!
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1 comment:

  1. Another great job. I especially like the handsome...hands & face.