Thursday, July 16, 2009

Bottle caps

As I mentioned in the last post, working with 2 part resin always interested me. I got a taste of it in one of the books by Sherri Haab. Such a great artist and writer, you must check out her stuff. In addition to doing my reading, I also watched a three part video, by John W. Golden on YouTube. I combined his instructions with some of the things suggested by Sherri Haab and decided to take the plunge into the mixology of resin.

I got my supplies from Art I chose the bronze bracelet with oval shaped blanks, thinking it would be large enough for me to put some original art in and pour resin over the top.

I am not good at judging the sizes of jewelry findings and such from pictures online, and I was surprised at the size of the individual ovals. Make sure you know what you are ordering. My fault for ordering the smaller blanks. The DH thinks they would look really good with tiny flowers placed in them. Looks like we are going to make an artist out of him yet...

Anyway, since the bracelet blanks are so delicate, I decided I'd better practice on something much bigger. I chose pop bottle caps. I gathered together all my supplies...

which consisted of copies of original "inchie" art, a circle punch, Mod Podge and a brush.

In John Golden's videos, he stresses using enough Mod Podge sealer. My impatient ways made me use less than was needed, but it worked for experimental purposes.

First I coated the inchies front and back with the Mod Podge...

While that was drying, I took the plastic inserts out of my used bottle caps.

This was very tedious and probably dangerous, as I was using a kitchen knife and pliers, so I would suggest getting bottle cap blanks to be used specifically for art projects.

When the art was dry, I cut it into circles. I started off using a circle punch which was the perfect size, but it broke on me after the first punch. That's what I get for dumpster diving. Anyway, the inchies are hand cut and ready to glue in the caps with the mod podge...

The tutorials stress the importance of making sure the seal is complete around the art, once it is in the cap or blank, otherwise the resin will seep under and make the art look like it has a wet spot on it. This is true. Believe it and make sure you use plenty of Mod Podge and make sure it is dry before using the resin.

I didn't take a picture of the mixing of the 2 part resin. Mainly because it was so simple. You use the cups included with the product. They are marked in fractions of an ounce, with the full cup being one ounce. Easy...half part A, half part B. Then you mix it gently for two minutes. You then have about 45 minutes to either pour it as is, or mix glitter or a coloring agent into it.

The product that I used is Ice Resin from Art It is jewelers' grade resin and is super clear and very low odor. I did this project outside, due to the numerous warnings I had heard and read. Using this brand, you could easily do it inside with ventilation. It was so easy to use, that I was a bit disappointed. I thought it would be more challenging than that. Now granted all I did was mix it and pour it into bottle caps...

It poured easily, not glumpy at all. I am looking forward to doing something a bit more complex with the resin. Michael's has molds made for this purpose and I have some molding putty that I could make a one of a kind mold out of, so perhaps in the future I will go that route. But remember that it must be a flexible mold, and you must use the proper release (don't ask how I learned this part). Anyway, I let them cure overnight (they were solid after several hours, but I didn't touch them at all.

They ended up looking like this...

This is a yucky shot, they actually look just like they did in the "just poured" photo, but I wanted you to be able to see the art. They are so shiny, they look liquid. It cured really, really clear but you will notice when you click on this photo that there are some "wet" spots, hence the need for extra care when sealing with Mod Podge. I will probably highlight the edges with gold leaf pen and use them as embellishments of some kind. This was lots of fun, but if taking the time to make beads and embellishments from resin isn't your thing right now, check out these really nice pendants, for a quick and easy necklace... or just pick something something more in your style from here, and you are on your way.

I, also, got a container of jewelry cleaner, by The Bead Smith. I like to try new items and thought this would be interesting in that it is a spray versus a "dip" type cleaner. After soaking my fingers while holding my ring to spray it, I read that household gloves should be used. ( rinse, rinse, rinse delicate fingers) The cleaner did the job, but nothing that the other dip and rinse cleaners couldn't have done. For me the spray was not a plus, but my rings are clean and that's the main thing.

Oh, and on another subject...I took the camera back today. It was not worth the money that I put out for it. The eye piece was too close to the body of the camera and the numbering system within the camera wasn't to my liking. I take shots, then load them on the computer and then put a clean chip back in the camera. This dang thing applied the same numbers to the next batch of photos, so when you went to load them into say, folder "kitty kat" you got the message that that particular number photo was already there and did you want to replace it. Yikes, no go, not how I like to do stuff. I very carefully repackaged everything and had the Geek Squad check it out and got a full refund on everything, used chips included. Way to go Best Buy!

Well, that's it for now, there is a kitten climbing up my chair so I have to go. Take care and don't be intimidated by what you may have heard, my experience with 2 part resin was easy. In fact, it was so easy, it's just ...A Walk In The Park.

Love ya!


Crafty Gal Linda said...

You've convinced me to use Ice Resin! You know I have been talking about switching to a two part resin and thinking about this for a while. I have used Glossy Accents which works well but just isn't wearing as well I would like for my pendants, etc. Thanks for showing us what you are up to!

Tina said...

I have a box of resin in my supply cupboard just waiting for the right project. Haven't tried it out yet. you've given me the inspiration to do it. Thanks
Oh, and thanks for the camera info. My daughter is checking out that camera. She has a good eye and is planning a huge photo art project and was looking for a new camera. Let me know if you have another suggestion for one you'd recommend.

Love those bottle caps. You know, I always get inspired on my blog visits here.


jean benabou said...

This is too cool!
I have always wanted to use resins but have been too paranoid after reading that the sculptor Eva Hesse died after too many years using the stuff in her large scale fiber pieces.
You said the odor isn't bad,so, you would advise using a fan or just going outside?
How much do the resins cost and how many ounces?
I want to do something similar with a bracelet I got a long time ago.
Thanks so much as usual for all the info.

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