Make Plastic with Milk

What do milk and plastic have in common? Milk is sold in plastic jugs, but that’s not the answer. You can actually make plastic using milk, and you can form the plastic into shapes that can be painted and decorated. This is a fun activity for adults as well as kids, and if you want a craft project that’s definitely different, this craft project is an excellent choice.

The following information provides instructions on how to make plastic using milk, as well as great ideas for painting and decorating your finished treasures. You’ll be amazed at the shapes, figures, and jewelry you can make with milk. You’ll never look at a glass of milk the same way again.

Necessary Supplies

Making plastic from milk doesn’t require chemicals or complex ingredients. The only ingredients you need to make moldable plastic are two cups of whole milk and 1 1/3 teaspoons of vinegar. You’ll also need a saucepan, a clean glass jar, and waxed paper.

Procedure

Begin by pouring two cups of whole milk into a saucepan, and stir in 1 1/3 teaspoons of vinegar. Heat the mixture to boiling while stirring frequently.

If you’ve heard of curds and whey, that’s what you’ll get as the milk begins to boil. The milk will form curds and a clear liquid, otherwise known as whey. The curds are comprised of milk fat, minerals, and casein.

Once the curds and whey have separated, you’ll be left with a blob of yellow material in the bottom of the saucepan. Drain away the liquid, and remove the leftover blob. This is the plastic material that can be fashioned into trinkets and jewelry.

Knead the plastic until it reaches a dough-like consistency, and mold it into anything you desire. Make beads for necklaces and bracelets, or make flower blooms, animals, or anything else you can think of. The things you can make are only limited by your imagination. The options are truly endless.

Once you’ve completed your plastic creations, let them dry on a sheet of waxed paper for at least eight hours. After the pieces are dry, you can try the following fun and creative ideas.

Optional Supplies & Creative Ideas

Optionally you can paint the plastic shapes using latex acrylic craft paint. Besides painting your plastic works of art with acrylic colors of your choice, consider adding iridescent or opalescent highlights.

Lastly, give your plastic pieces made with milk a more finished look with acrylic clear coat. No one will ever guess the plastic trinkets or jewelry you’ve made began with a glass of milk and a little vinegar.

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