How to Make Fish Freshies
Start by gathering all the items that you will need. The process will go much more smoothly if everything is readily accessible.
This project is fun and can be adapted for many different applications. These freshies make great gifts or wonderful additions to your shop!
The amount of aroma beads you'll need will depend on the size of your molds, as well as the number of freshies you want to make. We were only making a few freshies so we measured out 4oz of beads (by weight) for each color and put them into their own container.
Our aroma beads can hold about 1-2oz of fragrance oil per pound (depending on the fragrance you're using). If you are using a more dense fragrance oil like Leather or Blueberry Cobbler, you will need to use less fragrance than you would with a lighter scent such as Fruit Slices. For this project, we used the fragrance Desperado and measured out 0.25oz of the oil (by weight) using our 15 pound digital scale (this is about a 6% fragrance load).
Note: The plastic container we are using is a number 5 plastic which is polypropylene. This type of plastic is recommended because it does not melt or disintegrate from the fragrance oil.
This fish freshie has 3 different colors layered in a gradient. We used the Bayberry/Eucalyptus liquid dye for the dark green color, then mixed the Spiced Pumpkin and Cinnamon/Rust liquid dyes together to get the salmon color.
Add 1 drop of the Bayberry/Eucalyptus dye to one of the containers of beads, and set it aside. Then, using a wooden stir stick or a toothpick, add a drop of the Spiced Pumpkin dye to the end and dip it into the beads you're using for the salmon color. Repeat this process with the Cinnamon/Rust dye and add the color to the same container.
Note: Because we are only using 4oz of beads and we are aiming for a lighter color, we do not need a full drop of the Spiced Pumpkin and Cinnamon/Rust liquid dyes. We use the technique with the stir stick whenever we want a lighter color than a full drop would allow.
Since the third color is white/clear, we do not need to add any dye to these beads. You will need to make sure you choose a fragrance oil that is mostly clear if you want these bright white beads.
Next, place the lids on the 3 containers and make sure they are sealed tight so the beads don't go flying when you shake them up. Once you're certain the lids are all on tight, gently shake the beads until the color and fragrance oil are evenly dispersed.
It will take a few days for the oil to completely absorb into the beads. Once the beads are dry, we recommend letting them cure for an additional 5 days before baking them to get the strongest scent possible.
Note: If you are using a more dense fragrance oil like Leather, it will likely take longer for the beads to fully absorb the scent.
Cut a piece of parchment paper and place it on top of your cookie sheet. Do not use wax paper as the aroma beads WILL stick to it!
To separate the 3 different colored beads, take 2 small strips of cardstock and cut 1" slits on each side so they will fit inside the cookie cutter. (You'll have to line them up over the cookie cutter and mark where you want to make each cut). Our strips are roughly 2" x 8".
Once you have the cardstock in place, it's time to start adding the beads to each section. We recommend starting with the center color as it was easier to fill the cookie cutter this way. Start by filling up the center section about halfway, then move on to the other 2 colors. Once the other 2 sections are filled, go back and fill up the center the rest of the way.
Note: You'll want to make sure you fill the cookie cutter up to the top with the beads because they will shrink down once you bake them.
Once you have filled up the cookie cutter with beads, slowly remove the 2 pieces of cardstock. Once they're removed, you should be left with 3 separate sections, as seen here.
Bake your aroma beads in a pre-heated oven at 350°F for about 6-7 minutes to start. You can test to see if your beads are done by lightly touching the top layer with the tip of your finger. If the beads stick to your finger, they're not quite done. Pop them back in the oven for another 1-2 minutes until the beads no longer stick to your finger when you touch them.
Once they're done baking, set the beads aside and let them cool completely.
Now that the aroma beads have completely cooled, it's time to remove them from the cookie cutter! Gently start pulling the cookie cutter to separate it from the beads. You'll have to wiggle the cookie cutter back and forth until the freshie pops out.
Note: If you are having trouble getting the cookie cutter to release the beads, you can pop them in the freezer for a couple of minutes to help the beads shrink and pull away from the sides of the cookie cutter.
Using a power drill, make a small hole in the head of the fish for the string. We used an 11/64" drill bit for our freshie, which was the perfect size for the string.
Note: Place a small cardboard box under the freshie before you drill the hole to protect your work surface.
Cut about a 10" piece of string and thread it through the hole you just drilled. Next, tie a knot on each end of the string and attach the top and bottom of the bobber to the string, just under each knot. Then, trim off the excess pieces of string hanging from the bobber and tie a loop up at the top.
Finally, take a pair of scissors and trim off all the sharp and pointy edges on the freshie from melting them in the oven.
Note: To attach this freshie to your rearview mirror, simply detach one end of the bobber, loop the string around the mirror, and reattach the bobber.
Congrats! You now have a cute little fish freshie! These are perfect to give as gifts for Father's Day, birthdays, etc. They're also great products to add to your shop!
Click here to watch the video tutorial!
We want to see you try this project! Tag us if you share your creations on your social media accounts! You can use the hashtag #lonestarcommunity and see your beautiful creations on our Lone Star Community page.