How to Make Resin Jewelry
Cathie Filian and Steve Piacenza break the mold with hardcore resin jewelry, belt out stylish ideas for buckles, and tear through a T-shirt technique that’s totally cutting edge.
These easy-to-make pieces of resin jewelry use guitar picks to show off hardcore fashion style.
Materials and Tools:
EasyCast (resin and hardener kit)
food-grade silicone spray or mold-release spray
plastic measure/mixing cups (do not use wax-coated cups)
wood stir sticks
waxed paper or plastic sheet to protect work surface
images or items to embed
découpage medium (optional)
resin dye (optional)
ball chain necklace
hand or electric drill
1/16" drill bit
18- or 20-gauge wire
Warning: Due to the strong bonding properties of EasyCast, use only plastic molds designed for resin casting. Other molds such as candy, soap or candle molds are generally not usable even with a good mold release. If unsure, test a spot on the mold.
1. Prepare the mold with a mold-release spray.
2. Carefully measure equal amounts of resin and hardener into a straight-sided, flat-bottomed wax-free measuring container.
3. For EasyCast to blend chemically, it must be mixed together in two stages. Combine resin and hardener according to package directions and stir for two full minutes. While mixing, use the stir stick to scrape down the sides and bottom of the mixing container. After two full minutes of mixing, pour the contents from the first container into a second container. Using a new stir stick, mix the contents of the second container for one minute, then scrape down both the sides of the container and the stir stick.
4. Quickly pour resin into a mold until mold is half full.
5. Brush the object(s) that will be embedded with resin (hold object with tweezers and apply resin with a foam brush or stir stick). Next, set the object in the half-filled mold, face down. All organic items such as candy, paper or fabric should first be sealed with découpage medium. All nonorganic items such as a guitar pick can be brushed with resin.
6. Fill the remainder of the mold with resin. Fill to just below the top of the mold to prevent a lip of resin forming at the edges. If bubbles form, use a hair dryer and pass heated air quickly over the surface to remove bubbles. Be careful, though: excess heat can melt or warp plastic molds.
7. If colored resin is desired, follow steps 1-5, let the half-filled mold cure for one day, mix more resin and add dye. Fill the remainder of the mold with colored dye. Let the resin finish curing for two days.
8. For best results, cast pieces should cure at temperatures between 70 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Curing time will vary depending on room temperature and thickness of cast. Normal cure for castings that are 1/2" thick is 24 hours for soft cure, 72 hours for hard cure.
9. While it's in liquid form, the material can be cleaned from tools with alcohol or solvent. Use warm water and liquid soap to clean from skin.
Safety alert: Never use solvents or alcohol to clean EasyCast from skin.
10. When the item has cured, release it from the mold. Rigid plastic molds can usually be twisted slightly to break the cast pieces free; pushing in from the back side of the mold will also help.
11. Drill a small hole in the top of the pendant using a 1/16" drill bit; use a jewelry needle file or a bead reamer to smooth hole edges.
12. Thread a 5" piece of wire through the hole, form a small loop and wrap the base of the loop with the end of the wire. Add the pendant to a ball chain necklace