Make personalized jewelry and serving trays for family and friends using photos from special occasions, along with other charms or knick-knacks, to create one-of-a-kind gifts they will love . These personalized gifts are a perfect way to celebrate and commemorate birthdays, holidays, graduations, or any other special events.
- Photos or pictures (I used inkjet printouts for the bracelet below)
- scissors or shaped punches
- Mod Podge
- Paint brushes
- Graduated cups and stir sticks
- Easy Cast Resin
- glitter, charms, and other items to embed in resin along with photos and pictures
- Bezel bracelet, pendant, or tray (paint optional)
Bracelet or Pendant Procedure
- Make sure you have all of your supplies handy
- Lay out the design and cut photos to fit your jewelry bezels (bracelet or pendant).
- Use Mod Podge to secure photos in bezel or tray. I put a base layer in the bezel or tray, add the picture, and apply additional Mod Podge on the surface of the picture or paper. If I am using glitter, I sprinkle it on top of the Mod Podge before it drys.
- Ensure paper and photos are completely covered with Mod Podge and allow to dry completely before moving on the resin step. I usually apply at least two coats of Mod Podge to the paper, making sure it protects all of the paper in the corners and any crevices. I try to plan ahead so the Mod Podge can dry overnight. It is critical that the paper and photos are sealed or the resin will cause discoloration.
- Mix resin according to the package. I have only used Easy Cast resin and have had success using this brand. Other brands are available. Please comment if there is a brand of resin you prefer to use.
- Follow directions carefully to ensure the resin sets and doesn’t remain tacky. In particular, make sure you mix the resin well for the time specified and that you transfer the resin into a second container for another round of thorough mixing.
- Fill carefully on level surface. Be sure to protect your work surface and wear gloves to protect your hands. Resin is impossible to clean up.
- Immediately after filling the jewelry bezel or tray, gently pass a flame over the resin to remove any bubbles. For small items I used a candle lighter, for larger items I recommend a cooking torch. Work carefully and ensure no flammable materials are nearby.
- After allowing the resin to set for 72-hours, I added charms to the bracelet. Perfect personalized gift for a fellow scientist!
Serving Tray Procedure
The instructions for the serving tray are similar to the instructions outlined above for the bezel bracelet or pendant.
- Because of the large surface area, be sure to apply several coats of Mod Podge to protect any paper or photos from the resin. In the photos and video below, you can see that I missed the top center of the background paper and the resin soaked through.
- I recommend measuring how much water it takes to fill the tray to the desired depth. You can use this volume as an estimate for how much resin you will need to prepare. I always add a little extra (at least 10%) because some resin remains behind in the mixing containers.
- I used flat dragonfly charms for this project. If you have items to embed in the resin, be sure you prepare enough resin to cover these items. Because items might float in the resin, be sure they are glued to the surface. For flat items, this can be done when the base is covered with Mod Podge. If you have larger items, you might want to consider add the resin in two pours. Add the items after you have poured the first 1/3 to 1/2. Ensure there are no air bubbles. Carefully use a cooking torch or other flame to pop bubbles. Alternatively, you can also use a warm blow dry on a low setting (be sure not to agitate or blow out the resin with smaller projects). Allow resin to set 48-hours before covering with the remaining volume of resin.
- I carefully sealed the edges of the tray with Frog Tape and covered my work space. Resin is impossible to clean (at least really, really difficult).
Please share your DIY resin projects for inspiration.