Friday, April 29, 2016

From Perfume Bottle to Home Decor using Amazing Casting Products

Over the past month I've shared a few of my resin jewellery-making ideas with you as the Featured Artist on the Amazing Casting Products blog. But resin doesn't have to be reserved only for jewellery - it is equally suitable for creating home decorator items. The starting point for my final project, the "Inspiration Post", is a beautiful Egyptian Perfume bottle that I'll be recreating in resin.
An Egyptian Perfume Bottle makes a great mould to create your own resin beads from

You can read about the backstory that inspired these beautiful bottles on the Amazing Casting Products blog. Whilst you're there, take a look through the archives for some other wonderful inspiration.
Handmade resin Faux Egyptian Perfume Bottles created by Myléne Hillam of Mill Lane Studio. These are assembled with lots of bead caps, a smattering of beads and crystals and a few filigree stampings. Full tutorial for how to make these.

I was a bit nervous undertaking this project because I had no idea if I’d be able to remove my precious bottle from the Mold Putty once it had cured. But I took a deep breath and proceeded anyway!

Here’s what you’ll need to create the mould for the central bead:
To cast the bead, you’ll need:
To assemble the bottle, you’ll need these items:
First things first, you have to work out how much Mold Putty you need to make the mould! Well, I know this is stating the obvious, but you need twice as much as you’d use to create a half bottle. By that I mean, measure out enough of one part to go around half the bottle and then measure out that same amount of the other part. Simple!
How to create a silicone putty mould of an Egyptian Perfume Bottle.
This bottle stands at 10cm (4”), so it’s quite a large amount to mix and you have to work fast to blend it. Flatten it out into a rough circle and then wrap it around the bulbous part of the bottle, making sure it's pressed right against the glass so you get a good impression. You can see the seam where the two sides meet. Make sure that they are well joined so the mould will be leak proof along the seam. And then set it on its side to cure.

Happily, I was able to slice the seam open with a Stanley Knife and take my precious bottle out. I can tell you I was quite relieved! 
To remove the bottle from the mould, you'll need to carefully slice it open with a Staley knife.
You will probably need to trim the bottom of the mould with the knife to level it. 
Trim the bottom of the mould with a sharp knife so that it is flat and ready for filling with resin.
Because the mould is open-ended it needs to be plugged at the trimmed end with plasticine. The plasticine also acts as an adhesive to make sure that the mould stays firmly upright whilst you're pouring the resin. 
Plug the bottom hole of the mould with plasticine to prevent leaks. It will also serve as an adhesive to keep the mould in position whilst the resin cures.
The final step in preparing the mould is wrapping it tightly with rubber bands to make sure it’s water tight (or rather, resin-tight!). Mix and colour the resin according to the package instructions and pour it into the mould. For this first piece, I coloured the resin with Alumilite red dye.
Make the mould resin-tight with rubber bands.
It’s always exciting to see your first cast out of a mould and this one is no exception. As expected, the Clear Casting Resin has picked up all the detail from the mould. One thing I learned from the first piece I cast is that this mould needs to be filled very slowly to avoid air pockets getting trapped in the lattice detail. My second and third pours were much more successful because I dripped the resin into the mould and allowed it to slowly rise up inside.
Remove the rubber bands and gently pull the silicone mould away from the resin casting.
So now you have these fabulous bulb-shaped beads. But to turn them into bottle components, they need holes. I used a Dremel with a 1.5mm drill bit on very slow speed – first from one end, and then the other, with the aim of meeting in the middle. 
Drill a hole in the centre of the bead - first from the top, then the bottom. If you drilled straight, you'll meet in the middle.
Before assembling the Faux Egyptian Perfume bottles, prepare some flower filigrees by drilling a stringing hole, cutting the petals apart and shaping them. I used Tim Holtz Tonic Studio scissors because the micro-serrated edge will easily cut through thin metal stampings.
Prepare the filigrees by drilling a stringing hole, cutting the petals apart and curving the petal edges.
Now it’s time to raid your findings stash to find components that will help you recreate a life size Faux Egyptian perfume bottle. The idea here is to combine bead caps in different sizes and shapes with a smattering of beads and crystals to represent the decorative elements of the stem and the perfume dropper.
Assemble the bottle using a variety of bead caps, beads and filigree stampings.
Once you're happy with the balance of the components (and it looks like a perfume bottle) make sure that each component is nesting snugly inside the one above and below it and that there’s no play in the finished piece. If they don't fit snugly, or they slide around inside each other, the finished bottle will sit crookedly. Create a simple jewellery-making loop as close to the top bead as you can to securely finish them off.
Turn a simple loop to keep all the components securely in position.
Tip: Using rigid florist wire rather than regular jewellery-making wire gives the bottle a strong core so the bottle will stand upright on its own.
Handmade resin Faux Egyptian Perfume Bottle created by Myléne Hillam of Mill Lane Studio. These are assembled with lots of bead caps, a smattering of beads and crystals and a few filigree stampings. Full tutorial for how to make these.
To create the gold version, I dusted the inside of the mould thoroughly with Gold Metallic Powder and coloured the resin with black dye.
Handmade resin Faux Egyptian Perfume Bottle created by Myléne Hillam of Mill Lane Studio. These are assembled with lots of bead caps, a smattering of beads and crystals and a few filigree stampings. Full tutorial for how to make these.
The Pineapple bottle was cast with black resin and the lattice was highlighted with a Krylon Gold Leafing pen. The leaves are created by stacking petal bead caps inside each other.
Handmade pineapple-shaped resin Faux Egyptian Perfume bottle created by Myléne Hillam of Mill Lane Studio. These are assembled with lots of bead caps, a smattering of beads and crystals and a few filigree stampings. Full tutorial for how to make these.
My resin bottles make a wonderful grouping together and would look lovely on a dressing table.... perhaps a beautiful gift for your mother on Mother's Day. You may not have an Egyptian Perfume bottle of your own but take a look at what collectables you do have and see what might be worthy of reproducing in resin. 

For more inspiration, please join me on Facebook or visit my website for resin workshop information.
Exotic Faux Egyptian Perfume Bottles made from resin and an assortment of bead caps and jewellery findings.


'Til next time.....








If you can't get enough of My Tutorials and you want even more inspiration, click here to find my books and printable pdfs



Saturday, April 16, 2016

Steampunk Resin Jewellery with a Bright and Modern Twist

Did you know that I'm the featured artist over at the Amazing Casting Products blog this month?

Each Friday/Saturday, one of my resin projects will be featured or there will be a little article where you can learn some fun facts about me as I have fun playing with resin.

Today I share a tutorial on how to make this bright and bold "Steampunk-esque" necklace.

I had so much fun with these resin cogs and wheels that I couldn't stop at just one piece. Here's a piece I glammed up with Swarovski crystals.

And another variation. Steampunk never looked so bright and fresh!

These pieces are not for the faint-hearted - they are big and bold and really make a statement!

So if you've got an afternoon free, why not give this project a go - you can re-create this catwalk-worthy piece in just a few hours.

'Til next time.....








If you can't get enough of My Tutorials and you want even more inspiration, click here to find my books and printable pdfs



Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Marbled and Textured Resin Bracelet

I'm the guest artist over at Amazing Crafts this month and I've been sharing tutorials and inspiration on their blog each week. But this bonus project is just for you!
Silver bracelet with alternating oval disks of marbled purple and pink resin and silver and purple textured resin.

Today, I'm going to share how I made this really cool Marbled and Textured bracelet.

How to Make a Textured Resin Bracelet

You'll need to gather a few things:

Alumilite Amazing Casting Resin
Alumilite Red dye
Alumilite Violet Dye
Alumilite silver metallic powder
Silicone texture mould - I used Kraft Lady AMKT 4 Rococo (edited - mould is no longer available. Try searching for silicone texture mats)
Soft bristled brush
Open back silver oval bracelet blank
Teflon Craft Sheet
Permanent marker
Scrap of  paper
Tim Holtz Tonic Studios Scissors
Stanley knife
5-minute Araldite or strong adhesive like E6000
Measuring cups and wooden stir sticks

Brush the surface of the texture mould with the silver powder. Leave some areas lighter and some areas uncovered.
 Brushing the surface of the texture mould with a light dusting of the silver powder. Leave some areas lighter and some areas uncovered.

Measure 7.5mls (1/4oz) of each part.
Measure out equal quantities of each part of Amazing Casting Resin and mix together according to the package instructions.

Colour Part A with two drops of violet dye.
Colour Part A with two drops of Alumilite violet dye and mix well before adding Part B.

Add Part B to the cup and mix according to the package instructions. Pour in a puddle on the texture mould and then spread it out to approximately 3mm (1/8") thick.
Pouring a puddle of purple resin on the texture mould that has been dusted with Pearl Ex.

Once cured, peel the textured resin away from the silicone texture mat.
Once cured, peel the texture resin away from the silicone texture mat.

For the marbled pieces of the bracelet, measure equal parts of Parts A and B. Add 1 drop of red dye to Part A.
For the marbled pieces of the bracelet, measure equal parts of Parts A and B. Add 1 drop of red dye to Part A and mix well before adding Part B. Then add the colours you want to marble and swirl them through the mixed resin.

Mix the two parts together. Working quickly, add 1 or 2 drops of each of the red and violet dyes and swirl them lightly through the resin.
Mix Parts A and B together really well. Working quickly, add 1 or 2 drops of each of the red and violet dyes and swirl them lightly through the resin.

Pour the resin into a puddle on the craft sheet and spread it to 3mm (1/8") thick. Set aside to cure.

Place the bracelet blank on your work surface with the back facing upwards. Position the scrap paper over one of the ovals and press it down so that it leaves an impression. Pierce the centre of the oval with the scissors and cut it out to create a template.

Place the template over the two pieces of resin and trace out three marbled ovals and two textured ovals.
Place the template over the two pieces of resin and trace out three marbled ovals and two textured ovals.
Trace out three ovals on the marbled resin
  Cut them out.........
Cut the ovals out using Tonic Studios scissors.

and shave away any rough edges with the Stanley knife so they fit firmly inside the bezels of the bracelet.
Shaving away any rough edges with a utility knife so the ovals fit firmly inside the bezels of the bracelet. I like to use Araldite 5-minute epoxy to glue them securely in place.

Adhere the pieces inside the bezels with your choice of adhesive.
Marbled and Textured oval resin bracelet. Once the resin has cured, cut out the ovals and adhere one in each of the bezel blanks using either 5-minute Araldite or E6000.


I absolutely adore all the different shades of purple that were created when the red and violet mixed together as I swirled the colours through the resin. But maybe you're not a purple girl.... maybe you prefer blue or green or yellow. So play around with the colour combinations you like to make a bracelet that works with your wardrobe. And then wear your bracelet and listen to everyone rave over how gorgeous it is!

Pin this project for later!
Yummy texture and pretty swirls are a perfect combination in this oval resin bracelet.

'Til next time.......





If you can't get enough of My Tutorials and you want even more inspiration, click here to find my books and printable pdfs


Thursday, April 7, 2016

Jewellery Display Frame

Today's post is a little different to recent posts in that I don't have a free tutorial for you but I really wanted to share with you this fabulous jewellery display.

No doubt you've seen plenty of these around on the internet but this one was made especially for me by my father and he's done such a fabulous job on it - I couldn't be happier with how it turned out.

My brief was that it needed to have mesh for hanging earrings, a rail for bracelets and hooks to hang necklaces from (I still need to screw those in along the bottom of the frame). The only other thing I specified was that it be black and white. You can clearly see the white frame. And that lovely white scallop in the background is actually curtain lace placed against black cardstock, so he fulfilled the brief perfectly.

But what I love about the overall look of the display is how the white-on-black has become a shade of grey - it's the perfect foil to show off my jewellery without taking anything away from it. White-on-grey is a much more elegant look than white and black!

I am one very lucky girl because not only did he make me one, but he made me a second one to match! I think my dad has spoiled me.

'Til next time.....








If you can't get enough of My Tutorials and you want even more inspiration, click here to find my books and printable pdfs