Bespoke resin beads
Resin beads make your jewellery unique. You can create random waves of colour or add mixed media items such as fibres and film. How about that really personal touch and add mini photographs?
In this tutorial I have use a square silicone bead mould. Square moulds are nice and simple to use, you can easily see the items or colour you are adding to your bead and are easy to sand and finish one your beads have cured. They are are a great choice if you have never tried making resin beads before.
Remove your silicone mould from the gripseal bag, its always a good idea to keep you moulds in a bag when not using them to prevent dust (or in my case dog hair) from getting into your mould. Place it on a flat surface that you can move around when finished, silicone moulds are very 'squishy' and you don't want your resin accidentally squeezed out of your bead mould.
Add a little resin mix to the base of your beads, I use Low Viscosity resin and hardener (Chemset ES 8103 & ES 8204) as it flows nicely around my added items.
Drop in your mixed media items and position with tweezers or a cocktail stick. Small pieces of crinkled fusible film of 2 contrasting colours mixed with a small amount of Angelina fibres are my favourite things to work with.
Continue to add resin and film until you reach the top of the bead mould. Add a little extra resin to create a small dome at the top of the bead, I find this makes for easier sanding when finishing the bead.
Pop the beads out of the mould by gently pushing them up from the under side. If you find this difficult after multiple use of the mould you can use a mould release agent, this should be completely dry before using with resin.
Starting with a course grit use wet and dry sand paper to smooth off any rough edges and flatten the top of the bead if necessary. Use the sand paper wet to avoid breathing in any dust particles from the resin, a face mask is also recommended.
the final stage is to polish the sanded areas using an abrasive paste such as T Cut, this will give a soft shine. For a high gloss shine simply apply a thin layer of resin to the sanded side of the bead with a cocktail stick. Be careful not to let the resin drip into the hole then leave to cure.