Incorporate feminine fabric into your makes to cater for girlie girls
What you need...
- BEADS Pearls, glass, round, cream, 10mm
- FINDINGS Fabric: floral print; strawberry print, Jump rings, silver-plated: 5mm; 8mm, Chain, medium link, silver-plated, Head pins, silver-plated, Clasp, lobster, silver-plated, Extension chain, silver-plated, Bails, flat pad, glue on, silver-plated, Ring blanks, flat pad, glue on, silver-plated, Cameo mount, plastic, white, Brooch finding, silver-plated, Ribbon, red and white gingham, 5mm wide
- TOOLS Resin, Pebeo crystal casting, Epoxy resin pigment, super white, Casting moulds: large heart; assorted, Measuring cups, Plastic mixing cups, Lolly sticks, Gloves, disposable, Heat gun, Paper, wet and dry: fine; medium; coarse, Glue, epoxy resin, Tracing paper, Pencil, Scissors, Cutters, wire, Tape measure, Pliers, round-nosed, Nail varnish, clear, Car lacquer, clear (optional)
Floral Necklace - 1. Place tracing paper over one cavity of a large heart-shaped mould and trace around the outline, adding 6mm to the size all the way around. Cut out, then place over a section of fabric you wish to use for a necklace.
2. Using a pencil, draw around the edge of the tracing paper onto the material. Cut out the fabric, then make a series of approximately 35 small slits around the edge (Fig. 1). This will enable you to run the fabric up the sides of the cavity of the mould, giving a neater finish to the necklace. Test how well your fabric fits by positioning it face down into the cavity, cutting any excess and adding extra slits as necessary.
3. Prepare 10ml of resin according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Pour a small amount into the large heart mould to coat the bottom of it. Using a lolly stick, spread the resin out to the edges and up the sides of the cavity to fully coat it. Remove air bubbles by heating the resin very gently for a few seconds at a time using a heat gun. Be careful not to overheat it, as this can damage the mould. Dip the cut fabric into the remaining resin until it becomes fully saturated, then place face down into the cavity.
4. Using a lolly stick, gently ease the fabric into position, pushing it down into the resin (Fig. 2). Ensure that the slits in the edges of the fabric run neatly up the sides of the cavity. Lift the mould up and look underneath it to check for any air bubbles. Large ones can be removed with a heat gun and smaller air bubbles can be removed by pushing down on the fabric with a lolly stick to work them to the edges and up the sides of the cavity until they pop.
5. Ensure that the fabric is fully adhered to the sides of the cavity of the mould, by smoothing it down with a lolly stick (Fig. 3). Keep an eye on the resin for the first two hours or until it starts to set, as new air bubbles may appear which need to be removed. If necessary, pour a little of the spare resin into the cavity to help you fully smooth the fabric back down once you’ve finished popping any air bubbles. Leave to set for 24 hours or until the resin is completely hardened.
6. Prepare 20ml of resin. Dip the end of a lolly stick into white epoxy resin pigment, then stir it thoroughly into the resin until it is opaque and uniform in colour. Pour the resin into the cavity to fill completely, pop any air bubbles which may appear, then leave to set for 48 hours or until completely hardened
7. Ease the resin heart from the mould by pushing down on the base of it. Using a pair of scissors, trim any excess fabric from the reverse, then sand using wet and dry paper with plenty of water until it is fully smooth. For the best quality finish, start with a coarse grade of wet and dry paper such as 240 grit, then move on to a medium grade of 600 grit before finishing with a fine grade like 1200 grit. For extra shine, a coat of clear car lacquer can be applied.
8. Prepare epoxy resin glue and use to secure a flat pad bail to the top of the reverse of the resin heart, before leaving to fully set. Thread medium link silver-plated chain through it, then add pearls and gingham ribbon as desired. To finish, attach an 8mm jump ring, lobster clasp and extension chain to the ends.