Friday, September 15, 2017

Makeover Your Phone Case with Resin and Gold Leaf

Give Your Phone a Luxe Makeover with Gold Leaf.

This project is great if you want to personalise your mobile/cell phone or any other portable device. All you need is epoxy resin, gold leaf flakes and a clear plastic case to fit your device.

If you'd like to see this tutorial in action, head over to my YouTube channel


Gas lighter
Wooden stir stick
Utility knife
Protective gloves and eye wear

Measure out the resin in a 2:1 ratio.....

...... and mix it following the package instructions.

Apply the resin to the OUTSIDE of the case. It's easier to control when you drip the resin onto the case rather than pour it on. 

The side of the wooden stir stick will help you spread it out evenly. It’s OK if some of the resin goes over the edges because they’ll be covered later anyway.

Pass a gas lighter over the surface of the resin to pop any bubbles. It’s important to keep the flame moving at all times.

Now comes the fun bit: sprinkling the gold leaf flakes onto the resin. Sprinkle them from a height to distribute them evenly. For a luxe look, sprinkle on a lot of flakes but if you want to see more of the phone case through the resin, then go lightly.

Whilst the resin is still liquid, apply another layer on top of the gold leaf. The flakes will move about a bit and some of the resin will flow over the sides but you can smooth the edges out with the wooden stir stick. Press down any bits that are sticking up with the stir stick. Once the resin stops spilling, move the phone case to a clean spot with gloved hands. Now it’s time to leave the resin to gel. This usually takes a few hours.
Covering the resin leaf with another coat of resin

Mix up another batch of resin and spread it across the surface. Once it stops pooling over the edge, move it to a clean spot on your work space and leave it to cure overnight.

Trim away any overpour on the edges with a utility knife. If there are any drips on the inside of the case, remove those too so that the case fits snugly.

Now your luxe gold metal leaf case is ready to snap into place.

Well that was pretty easy!

If you're one of those folks who tends to drop their phone a lot, then this case is probably not the best choice for you. But having said that, it will take a fair bit of knocking around. If you get scratches on the surface, you can just add another coat of resin and they'll disappear!

Like this project? Pin it for later!
Step by step project sheet for how to makeover your phonecase with resin and gold leaf.
Personalise your phone case with this easy DIY tutorial using resin and gold leaf flakes.

'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

Friday, September 8, 2017

Silicone Putty Mold Making - Mermaid's Tail Cupcakes

Mermaid's Tail cupcake toppers

What little girl wouldn't be thrilled to have mermaid cupcakes for her birthday party? Or for that matter, what big girl wouldn't want mermaid cupcakes? After all, inside every big girl is a little girl at heart! So I'm decorating a batch of these for my Mum's upcoming birthday celebration. But to start, we need to make a mould and I found the perfect item to make one from whilst I was wandering through the toy aisle recently. So, let's get started.

Here's what you'll need to make your own:

Make the Mermaid's Tail Mould

Measure out equal parts of Parts A and B of the Silicone Putty. To work out how much you need, I take one part and flatten it out into an oval shape about 6mm (1/4") thick. It should be at least half the length of the mermaid's tail. Roll that into a ball and then take the same amount of the other part.
EasyMold Silicone Putty is ideal for food moulds because it's food grade and FDA compliant.

Now you have to work quickly as the silicone putty sets quite quickly. Blend the two parts together until there are no streaks and the silicone is a uniform colour.
Blend the two parts of the silicone putty together until there is no marbling and the colour is uniform.

Shape the mixed putty into an a rough oval shape, wider at one end than at the other. Press the mermaid's tail into silicone and pull the walls up and over a bit to cup the tail slightly. Make sure the mould is at least 6mm (1/4") thick.
Mermaid's tail being pressed into the silicone putty to create a mould.

After about 25 minutes, the silicone should be set. To test it, press your nail into the the silicone. If it doesn't leave an indentation, then it's ready. If it makes an impression, leave it a little longer.
Checking to see if the mould is ready by pressing into the silicone with your fingernail.

To demould, just peel the silicone away on all sides.
Removing the mermaid doll from the silicone mould

Cast the Mermaid's Tails

Take a piece of gum paste and flatten it. Press this into the fluke area and then work it down from the tail area towards the body. Keep working it along the tail, smoothing it out as you go. You don't need to fill the whole tail but it needs to be long enough to push some of it into the frosting to help it stand up.
Step-by-step process of pressing the gumpaste into the silicone mermaid's tail mould.

I made mine about half the length of the tail.
Mermaid's tail mould partially filled with gumpaste

Remove the tail gently from the mould.
Carefully removing the moulded gumpaste from the mermaid's tail mould.

Set the tails aside to dry for several hours. If the weather is cold or humid, you may need to leave them overnight.
Gumpaste mermaid's tail set aside to dry.

Paint the tail with pastel pink edible paint.
Painting the mermaid's tail with edible pink paint.

Then dust a little gold lustre dust to highlight the tail and scales.
Adding edible gold dust highlights to the tips of the mermaid's tail.

Add some pink lustre dust to give the tail a pearly look.
Dusting the ribs and scales of the mermaid's tail with darker, edible pink dust.

Brush on some blue edible glitter on the tail whilst the paint is still wet.
Adding blue sugar crystals to the scales of the mermaid's tail.

And finally, sprinkle the gold disco dust across the fluke. Once the paint is dry, you can assemble the cupcakes.
Edible gold glitter being sprinkled on the fluke of the mermaid's tail.

Decorate the cupcakes with a few sprinkles or edible glitter and push the tail into the top of the frosting. Because we're using gum paste rather than modelling fondant, you might need to leave them for a couple of days to firm up before placing them in the frosting.

These are perfect for so many different party themes: By the Sea, Little Mermaid, Hawaiian, Tropical, Summer, to name a few.
Platter of vanilla cupcakes iced with blue buttercream icing, sprinkled with pastel coloured rice pearls and topped with a mermaid's tail.

Not got little girls in your household? No worries. Paint them black and white and turn them into whale's tails or paint them silver and turn them into fish instead and satisfy the fishermen in your life!

Just one last thing before I go.... always keep your food moulds for food only. I seal mine in a ziplock bag marked "food stuffs" so that I don't get them mixed up with the moulds I use for resin.

Pin this project!
How to make a mermaid's tail cupcake topper pin.

Edible mermaid's tail cupcakes pin

'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

Monday, August 7, 2017

Silicone Mould Making - Resin Starfish Food Label Holders

Gold painted resin starfish food label holder

For an upcoming birthday celebration, I want to use starfish as food label holders to place in front of the platters on the food buffet but I only have one starfish so today I'm going to make a mould of it so that I can cast as many as I need. When you need to reproduce an object in quick time, then EasyMold Silicone Putty is a great choice for making your mould.

There are three parts to this tutorial: making the mould, casting the starfish in resin and finally, colouring the starfish.

Make the Mould

For this part you'll need EasyMold Silicone Putty and a starfish. You have just a few minutes to work with Silicone Putty so make sure you work quickly. Measure out equal quantities of the putty, making sure that you have enough to cover the starfish or object that you've chosen.
Measure out two equal sized balls of silicone putty large enough to cover the starfish

Place the two parts together and begin to blend them.
Part A and Part B of the silicone putty ready to mix together

Keep mixing them until the putty is uniformly coloured and there is no streaking.....
Mixing and blending the silicone putty until it is thoroughly mixed.

and then roll it into a ball.
Rolling the mixed silicone putty into a ball ready for making a mould.

Flatten it so that it is large enough to fit over the starfish.
Flattened disk of silicone putty

Centre the putty over the starfish.....
Silicone putty disk being placed over the starfish

and push the putty onto the surface making sure you press it all the way around to pick up all the detail. Try to keep the mould at least 6mm (1/4") thick, especially over the high points so that they don't make a hole. Now leave the mould to cure for 25 minutes.
Silicone putty is now covering the starfish completely.

Once it's cured, you'll be able to easily remove the starfish by gently pulling the putty away on all sides.
Gently removing the starfish from the cured mould.

Step-by-step tutorial on how to make an easy silicone putty mould.

Cast the Starfish

Note: I've found it best to leave the mould for 24 hours if you want to cast resin into it or you will end up with a very rough surface because of the gas that is given off whilst the putty is curing. If you're working with clay though, it's OK to use your mould straight away.

I'm casting with Castin'Craft's FastCast urethane resin. It's fast curing so it's perfect when you need a quick result. You have only a couple of minutes from the time you pour the two components together until it begins to gel, so you have to work quickly. We won't be adding any colourant to the resin because it cures white.

For this part you'll need the mould you made, FastCast, measuring cups and stir sticks or an acid brush. I've found these work better than a stir stick when you're mixing small amounts of FastCast.
FastCast resin and silicone putty moulds ready for casting.

Measure out equal quantities of Parts A and B.
Measuring out Part A of Fast Cast

The package instructions contain thorough instructions for mixing the resin but briefly, you need to stir thoroughly for at least 30 seconds, using either a disposable brush or a wooden stir stick, then pour the resin into a clean cup and use a clean brush/stir stick to mix it for another 30 seconds.
Stirring Parts A and B together with a disposable acid brush to mix them.

Pour the mixed resin to the top of the mould.
Mixed resin being poured into the silicone starfish mould.

Now, sit back and watch it change from translucent to white......
Curing resin in the starfish mould, turning from clear to white as it cures.

....right in front of your eyes!
Resin almost completely white as it is almost set.

It will only take around 10-15 minutes to harden depending on your room temperature. To remove the cast from the mould, just gently pull back the silicone on all sides and pull the starfish out.
Gently removing the cured white resin starfish from the silicone mould.

Here's the original starfish on the left and the cast resin piece on the right.
Comparing the original starfish with the resin starfish.

Make the Food Label Holders

Gold painted resin starfish holding a food label on a tropical buffet.

Cut a slit across the top with a coping saw, just wide enough and deep enough to sit a card in.
Slit being cut across the top of the resin starfish with a coping saw.

 And then to give the starfish an opulent look, spray paint it with gold paint. I used a bright gold.
Spray painting the resin starfish with gold spray paint.

Freshly painted.....
Finished gold starfish

And now it's ready to serve!
Tropical afternoon tea buffet with gold starfish food label holders.

These starfish food label holders are perfect for a Hawaiian themed buffet. I'm really happy with how they've turned out.

I'll be posting more Hawaiian themed party decor in the coming months, so keep an eye out.

Pin this for later! 
Step-by-step tutorial for how to cast resin starfish food label holders with quick-curing FastCast resin.

'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