Beyond Vintage Ephemera: Make Colorful Dyed Resin Earrings with Embedded Wire Designs

As much as I love using resin and embedding things in it, I haven't tried dyeing resin yet. Here's a great little introduction to using dyed resin in your jewelry designs. There's also another great lesson to be learned in this project: all resin jewelry doesn't have to be collage-style or vintage jewelry.

Even though it seems like the most common way, you don't have to embed found objects and bits of vintage ephemera in resin. You can make your own "new" embeddable elements (additives) out of wire, beads, and other materials like Debra Mauser did here. Create unique layered designs by embedding some pieces completely under the surface of the resin and allowing some to sit on the surface.

 

Transparent Colored Resin Earrings
By Debra Mauser for Nunn Design's Innovation Team

I knew I wanted to add color to these earrings but wanted to add some bling as well.  The results are these transparent resin earrings.

Materials:

Nunn Design bezel earring blanks
two-part epoxy resin
Prisma colored chalk
additives (beads and wire)*
wax paper
wooden stick applicator
small tweezers
gloves (optional)

 

* Other good "new" additives for this project include buttons, glitter, charms (with the ring snipped off), metal or plastic scrapbook embellishments, metal and wire scraps from your studio, fibers, and more. If you use wire designs like Debra did, shape them and have them all ready to go before you mix your resin. Remember that any organic or porous additives need to be coated with a sealant like ModPodge before embedding them in resin.

Steps:

 

1.       Place wax paper down to protect your work area and do all your resin work on this paper. Using the wooden applicator, scratch the chalk until you have a small amount of powder.

2.       Place your two-part epoxy resin near the powder and slowly mix the colored powder into the epoxy resin.  Mix until the powder is totally incorporated and all chunks are gone. Break up chunks with the stick if needed, or use the stick to remove stubborn chunks that won't break up and blend in.

3.       Use your applicator to place mixed epoxy into the earring blanks, being careful not to overfill but also working swiftly. Keep the resin work time in mind as you work.

4.       Pick up your additives with tweezers and gently drop each one into resin. If bubbles arise, pierce them with a pin as soon as possible or pass the flame of a torch over the surface of the resin quickly to force bubbles to rise to the surface and pop.

5.       Allow resin to harden and cure following package directions.

 

Wire becomes the design element embedded in resin in Annie Osburn's earrings and pendant.

That's all there is to Debra's pretty summery looking quick-and-easy earring project! I love that wire is the design element instead of the main material in this project. For 10 more great earring projects using wire in a myriad of ways, get the 10 More Fabulous Wire Earring Projects eBook from the folks at Step-by-Step Wire Jewelry.

 

About the designer: Debora Mauser is a Southern gal that has been creating all her life, with a focus on jewelry for the last 13 years. She has no formal education in the jewelry field but has been lucky enough to take classes with excellent artists that have shared their techniques and skills. Giving back to the jewelry community through teaching is a priority for her. You can find her teaching at national venues like Bead Fest and Bead & Button, as well as William Holland Lapidary School. She also teaches at bead shops upon request.

Debora is known for texture and movement in her wire jewelry creations. While wire is always a central theme in her jewelry, lately Debora has been adding more color through enamel and using fabrication techniques to incorporate wire, metal and color.

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