**** This Tutorial has been Revised and available HERE - https://www.etsy.com/listing/116229974/how-to-use-my-upcycled-copper-pipe *****
There are a bunch of tutorials out there that detail how to use two-part resins to create jewelry, bottle caps, domino pendants, etc. I’m going to assume that you know how to measure, mix, and cure the particular resin that you are using. When I first started working with resin, I loved the look of the open bezels that had objects embedded in clear resin. I tried many different methods to try and achieve that effect but most tutorials I read stated to firmly attach your open bezel on the sticky part of clear packing tape or double sided tacky sheets. This always left a sticky film on the back of my bezel and no matter what I did, my pendants weren’t clear and were a sticky mess. I came up with this method after several failures and it works quite well!
Clear plastic page protectors. I use the cheapest “economy” type that Office Depot sells for about $18 for 200 protectors.
Clipboard: $1 at the Dollar Tree. This is not absolutely necessary but it makes it much easier to move your pieces to another surface to cure, freeing up your work area to do something else!
Sheet of white paper or cardstock – to place inside the page protector so that you can see any crud or bubbles much easier in your resin. I found that the brown background of the clipboard hides the crud (dust, etc.) and you might end up with imperfections.
Polymer Clay: I use Fimo Soft Black for these photos but after some experimenting I have found that I like Primo Accents Translucent the best. I imagine any polymer would work fine. You will only need a small 2oz bar and can use it over and over unless you get some resin on it. About $2-3.
Small cups: to place over your bezels while they cure to keep the dust out of them.
Resin, bezels, and if you want – colorants for the resin.
Figure 1: Place the white cardstock or piece of white paper inside the page protector and clip the page protector to your clipboard, if using a clipboard.
Figure 2: Condition (knead) the polymer clay until it is soft and workable and roll a small piece between your palms to make a clay “worm”
Figure 3: Wrap the worm around the bezel, pressing it firmly onto the plastic and outside of the bezel. Make sure you wrap the clay under the bail so you don’t have leakage. If any clay comes out inside the bezel, gently scrape it away with a toothpick.
Figure 4: Mix your resin according to directions and add colorant if you do not want a clear pendant. The picture shows I made a couple of clear ones and I used a few drops of black acrylic paint and a few drops of Martha’s Metallic Glaze (Copper Penny color) in my resin for the others. I only fill my bezels about 1/3 to 1/2 full so that I can embed something and add another layer of resin later.
Figure 5: Check for and eliminate bubbles often and cover your bezels with cups or something to keep the dust from them.
Allow your resin to fully cure before attempting to remove it from the plastic. This I learned after lifting one of my pieces and getting a big stupid fingerprint on the back of my resin. When the resin is fully cured, the bezel will easily lift right off the plastic. Remove the clay and save it for the next batch of pendants!
At this point, you can embed objects and add more layers of resin. When my pendants are completely cured and dried, I like to flip them over and paint a thin layer of resin on the back with a soft brush to make it nice and shiny.
Tips: The outer diameter of the medium bezel is 1” and the inner diameter is 7/8”. Paper punches for both of these sizes are readily available. (EK are my favorite). You will need to seal your paper with white glue or modpodge before covering it with resin. There are many tutorials on the internet for that. Then you can either glue the paper to the back (1” size) or embed it inside the bezel over your bottom layer of cured resin (7/8” size). The small bezel has an outer diameter of ¾” and an inner diameter of 5/8”, and paper punches are also easily found at your local craft store or online. The larger bezel has an outer diameter of 1 ¼” and an inner diameter of 1 1/8”. Circle punches for these sizes are also available and I have found the EK Success brand on Amazon. I like to imbed the smaller size inside the bezels on top of a layer of colored resin because I think it looks more “finished” than if it is glued to the outside.
UV Resin: I haven’t had much luck with these bezels and UV resin using this method. I have a very low-power UV light (9W) and the bezels get REALLY HOT for some reason. This heat causes the plastic to wrinkle and I have a million bubbles in my resin. I’m still searching for a way to make these work with UV resin and will update the tutorial if I figure it out. It might just be the cheap-o sheets that I use, and thicker plastic may work much better.
Polymer: You fill the bezels with polymer and bake them. I use the translucent clay and press about a 1/2 inch slice of clay inside the bezels and and bake them. The clay shrinks during baking so I use a thick white glue around the edge of the clay so that there won't be bubbles in the resin from the gap. After it is all sealed and dry, I glue sealed photographs or inkjet images to the baked clay and cover with resin for a nice "domed" effect.
I hope you enjoyed this free tutorial! If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me via convo. The tutorial is free but I will send a .pdf if you check out and pay $1. This cost is basically to cover fees to relist the tutorial. There is nothing additional in the .pdf that is not detailed here in the listing. Due to the problems I've had shipping to Italy, I will no longer ship to Italy. I am very sorry, but any orders shipping to Italy will be refunded and canceled. Thank you for understanding.
Have any questions? Contact the shop owner.