Tag Archive for jewelry

Commercial Bezels

After I posted the photos of jazzed up polymer clay I had a moment of enlightenment that, in retrospect, felt bit silly. I realized that instead of going to such trouble to frame my polymer clay, resin it, and add metal components to the back, I could simply put the polymer clay piece into a bezel. What a concept, eh? One method feels like I’m building a bezel around a finished piece (which does have its advantages) and the other involved putting my piece into a finished bezel. I feel like I’ve arrived at a familiar destination, but took the long way ’round.

However, like all good creative experiments, I learned a lot and I think both methods have their pros and cons. Here are some current pieces I created using commercial bezels :)

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Jazzed Up Poly Clay Jewellery

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I’ve been experimenting with using metal inclusions and resin coatings to jazz up my polymer clay jewellery – and to give them a more polished feel overall.

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There are other benefits, besides the aesthetic ones; the resin lends not only shine, but strength to polymer clay jewellery, allowing it to take a lot more pressure before it cracks. This is especially useful with brittle clays.

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Even the pieces above, created with leftover extrusion canes and scrap clay, look like intentionally designed piece of jewellery when you add metal and resin to frame the lovely patterns created by the clay.

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And when you add silk screening, like the piece above, the results are so lovely!

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For this one, I have used a laser jet print and a simple transfer technique to create the tree motif.

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I will be writing up tutorials for adding the metal elements, and also for the laser jet transfer just as soon as I can! In the meantime I wanted to share some pics, I love the shiny, polished feeling results.

Faux Enamel Resin Earrings

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Using resin to create a faux enamel effect is super easy, and once you get the hang of it you can mix virtually any colour you want and use it for all kinds of fun applications. This is a very simple project to make adorable fake enamel earrings.

If you enjoy this tutorial please consider checking out my e-book on resin jewellery to learn more, including how to preserve and resin flowers, making bangles and spheres, and layering elements in the resin to create more complex pieces. If you’re interested, click here :)

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You will need:

2 part epoxy resin. Because I plan to add pigment to my piece, I don’t need to use jewelry grade resin so I am using Easy Cast, which is slightly more affordable. If you were planning a transparent piece, or using flowers in your work I definitely would recommend you use a jewelry grade resin (such as Ice Resin or Envirotex Jewelry resin) instead.

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Bezels and earring hooks. I am using 2 heart-shaped bezels by Susan Lenart, purchased from BeadFX.

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1 small, graduated mixing cup.

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Pigments for the resin. Here I am using opaque white resin pigment from Castin’ Craft and pink Pearl EX powered pigment by Jacquard

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Stir sticks, in this case a couple of craft (popsicle) sticks will do well.

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And finally, a large plastic cup to cover your pieces with, to protect them from dust as they cure.

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Begin by mixing your resin. Into the graduated mixing up, add 15 ml of resin. It’s a good idea to put plastic cling wrap over your working surface before starting.

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Into the same cup, add 15 ml of hardener. It is crucial that you achieve a 1:1 ratio between resin and hardener, or your mixture may not cure.

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Using your stir stick, mix the resin gently. Work both clockwise and counter clockwise, using your stick to scrape the sides and bottom of the cup. Make sure you scrape off the resin that’s on the stir stick as well. You want a uniform mixture, without any striations, and as few bubbles as you can manage. Don’t ‘whip’ the resin as you’re mixing it – this will introduce lots of bubbles! Getting a nice even mixture should take about 2 minutes of constant stirring.

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Add just 2 drops of the opaque white pigment. Don’t overdo this part – a little of the pigment goes a long way and too much will extend your cure time.

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Blend it into the resin by mixing gently until it’s evenly combined.

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Use your wooden stir stick to scoop up a green pea-sized amount of the powered pigment.

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Blend it into the resin by mixing gently until it’s evenly combined.

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Use your wooden stir stick to add it to the bezels drop by drop. Resist the urge to just pour the resin in straight from the cup – spilled resin is very hard to clean!

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Add resin until your mixture starts to ‘dome’ slightly out of the bezel. Resin will contract slightly as it cures, so adding a little extra will give you a nice even surface. You can see here that the heart on the left has been domed and the heart on the right is still under-full.

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Now both hearts have just the right amount of resin. If you have any bubbles, you can use use a pin to prick them.

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Cover the pieces with the plastic cup and let them sit undisturbed for at least 24 hours.

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Add your earring wires, voila!

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I would advise that you let the resin sit for at least 72 hours before wearing your earrings. Resin will come to a soft cure in 12, but a full hard cure takes 72. If you enjoy this tutorial and you give it a whirl please share photos, I’d love to see what you make!

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The Perfect Dandelion

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2014

Just a photo today of my latest dandelion pendant, made in a 25mm spherical mold so it’s not like hanging a golfball off your neck–it’s quite wearable.

I saw this dandelion, tiny and perfect, while Tito and I were visiting my parents. I had to run back to the car for a tupperware container (good thing I had one!) to protect it on the way home. It always pays to keep tupperware in the car!

Etsy Sale this Friday!

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After a long break, I’m thrilled to announce a jewellery sale in my Etsy store, starting this Friday at noon!

Tito and I have been working hard on a new set of jewellery–and I honestly believe it’s some of the best work I’ve ever done. Maybe it’s because all the bezels are 100% handmade from scratch, and both of us have been so involved with every step for every piece. Each bezel is truly one of a kind, with all the marks that come with handmade. They’ve been antiqued by us as well, and each one reacted differently to give us a great spectrum of colours.

They’re pretty steampunk, with deep blue hydrangeas, forget-me-nots, baby’s breath, birch bark, Queen Anne’s Lace and maple leaves all in the mix. Transparent bezels, shadowbox effects and a double chain piece all make an appearance in the sale on Friday at noon. There are only 9 precious pieces; we went for time over quantity and really spent time on multiple pours, hand polishing and looking after the little details that make each one special.

Because I enjoy teaching people to make jewellery just as much as I enjoy making it, everyone who makes a purchase will receive a coupon for 25% off of a copy of my e-book Resin Jewellery. Love it, wear it, learn about it, and make your own.

Below is a preview of what’s going on sale.  We’ve already got plans for another round, there are tulips, irises and hyacinths blooming on the kitchen table right now!

$65 - Real Hydrangea Petal, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$65 – Real Hydrangea Petal, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$85 - Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$85 – Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$55 - Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$55 – Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$55 - Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$55 – Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$85 - Real Queen Anne’s lace and Maple leaf, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$85 – Real Queen Anne’s lace and Maple leaf, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$85 - Real Queen Anne’s lace, birch bark and Maple leaf, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$85 – Real Queen Anne’s lace, birch bark and Maple leaf, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$55 - Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$55 – Real Baby’s Breath and birch bark, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$65 - Real Baby’s Breath, preserved in a handmade brass bezel.

$65 – Real Baby’s Breath, preserved in a handmade brass bezel.

$65 - Real Forget-Me-Nots, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

$65 – Real Forget-Me-Nots, preserved in a handmade copper bezel.

Collaborative Art and Steampunk Copper

Resin Jewellery ©Shireen Nadir 2014

Tito has been doing a lot of copper work lately, and to my great delight he has gotten into making bezels. His work is (I know, I’m biased) absolutely gorgeous and totally steam punk.

Resin Jewellery ©Shireen Nadir 2014

He creates each bezel purely from scratch, hammering and shaping and soldering each piece until it’s just right. Then they’re hand-tarnished with ammonia and filed like mad to distress the texture.

Resin Jewellery ©Shireen Nadir 2014Resin Jewellery ©Shireen Nadir 2014

I’ve taken a bunch of his pieces and filled them with resin compositions of my own, and the results are so satisfying. Ever wonder whether the preservation techniques really work? All the leaves and flowers in these pieces are from last autumn.

Resin Jewellery ©Shireen Nadir 2014

I’m thinking of putting a few of these babies on Etsy because they’re just too good to keep to myself. I enjoy the fact that we both had a hand in each of them, and that makes them more special.

Resin Jewellery ©Shireen Nadir 2014

Spring is coming, and that means tulip season is almost upon us. I plan to take full advantage of the beautiful colours coming our way to create some bright and springy jewellery. Want to do the same? Check out the book to learn how it’s done!

Resin Jewellery ©Shireen Nadir 2014

Photography, Polymer Clay and Resin. Together at Last.

Today I wanted to preview a new design that I’ll be offering at the Etsy sale starting this Sunday–wearable photography.

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2013

These pieces are created using my own photographs (I’ve been showing off the autumn-themed pieces but there will be other options) printed to transparent acrylics and then baked directly into handmade polymer bases.

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2013

After the baking is complete, a layer of resin is carefully poured on top to seal the final piece in and give it that gorgeous shine.

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2013

The resin also serves to enhance the colours further, as well as protect the image.

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2013

The backs of the pieces are sanded for smoothness against the skin.

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2013

Each piece has the bails baked directly in, and centred both vertically and horizontally so that the piece hangs perfectly. They will come on 16″ silver plated snake chains.

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2013

Hopefully you like the new design, a few of these babies will be available for your holiday shopping this Sunday!

Resin Jewelry ©Shireen Nadir 2013

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