The Insider Tricks on How to Suspend Objects in Resin

 

how to suspend objects in resinSo while this is a tutorial on how to make a resin bracelet, it’s really an explanation of how to suspend objects in resin. Making things look like they’re floating is one of the fun things you can do with epoxy resin. In this bracelet project, I’m showing you how to make colorful buttons float in the bracelet.

So how can you get your buttons to float like the resin bracelet above?

You’re going to have to pour multiple layers.

plastic bangle bracelet mold with buttons

If you fill the bracelet mold completely, then add the buttons, they will sink to the bottom. All the buttons will be on one side of your resin bracelet after demolding. If you want your buttons to float, you need to pour a thin layer of resin first. This gives the buttons a place to rest when you pour the second layer of resin.

 

mixing clear epoxy resin

Mix resin.

For this project, I’m using the Resin Obsession super clear epoxy resin.  It cures hard and is durable.  It’s my go-to jewelry resin because bracelets won’t soften with body heat.

Pro tip:  If you have never mixed resin before, be sure to read how to mix resin and hardener in five easy steps.

Before adding the resin, be sure to prep the resin mold with a light mist of Castin’ Craft mold release and conditioner and allow to dry.

pouring resin into a plastic mold

For the first layer, I knew I didn’t need much to lift up the buttons.  I only poured in enough to cover the bottom with a couple of millimeters of resin.

measuring resin depth in a mold

This shows how much resin I ended up pouring into the bottom.  I didn’t measure the amount of resin, but instead ‘eyeballed’ to the level where I thought the resin needed to be.  It ended up being 3 to 4 milliliters of mixed resin.

placing buttons in a plastic bangle bracelet resin mold

Here’s the trick on how to suspend objects in resin

Once the first layer has partially cured, add resin for the next layer.  This partially cured time is also known as a resin’s gel time.  At this point, your resin is like semi-cured gelatin.

Drop the buttons into the mold and use a stirring stick to help you get them into place.  If your resin is in the gel phase, be careful.  You don’t want to disturb that layer because you will insert bubbles into the resin that won’t be able to escape.

Pro tip:  If you pour the next layer while the first layer is in the resin gel phase, the line between resin layers is minimized, if not totally absent.

You may be wondering why not place the buttons, then pour the resin.  Doing it that way will make it more likely that you will trap air into your resin.

Once the buttons are placed where you want them, completely fill the mold with the remaining resin.  Cover and allow to cure.

I won’t go into the demolding steps here, but there is a video on our youtube channel on How to demold a resin bangle bracelet.

sanding a resin bracelet

Sand off any rough edges with wet/dry sandpaper.

I started with a 150 grit sandpaper and worked my way down to 600 grit.  Here’s where you can learn more about sanding resin to get it smooth.

polishing a resin bracelet

Polish your resin bracelet as desired.

For this bangle bracelet, I used the Novus polishing compound kit.

Finished resin bracelet

line between resin layers shown in a resin bracelet

If you look closely, you can see a line between my resin layers.  This happened because I let the resin fully cure before pouring the second layer.  But, I would say almost no one ever notices this on a finished bracelet, so don’t worry if this happens to you.

button resin bangle bracelet

Enjoy your new piece of jewelry!

If you are asking yourself how to suspend objects in resin, here’s what NOT to do.

Do not add your items once the resin starts to cure.  Why?

1.  It will be almost impossible to get your inclusions to ‘stop’ at a certain level.

2.  Once the resin starts curing, disturbing it in any way will introduce bubbles you won’t be able to get out.

Pouring in layers is the best way to suspend objects in resin.

Ready to fast-track your resin success?

Then you will want a copy of my instantly downloadable ebook, Resin Fundamentals.  I’ve condensed my fifteen years of resin artist experience into the details you need to know to stop wasting your time and energy making ugly mistakes.  Buy the book now and it’s yours to read in minutes.

 

Unpublished Blog Posts of Resin Obsession, LLC © 2021 Resin Obsession, LLC

Like this post? You may be interested in  How To Make Your Own Sea Glass With Resin

13 thoughts on “The Insider Tricks on How to Suspend Objects in Resin

  1. I tried to do this with scrabble tiles instead of buttons and they kept floating to the top. Any suggestions on that?

      1. Are you saying I should do a small layer at the bottom, put the Scrabble tiles in and fill the resin only to the very top of the tile so it doesn’t float past it? And then do a third layer on top of the tiles?

      2. Use UV curing resin thats compatible with your casting resin as a “glue” to fuse the tiles to the first pour and blast it with a UV flashlight to cure instantly. Then pour your second layer.

  2. How long do you recommend letting each layer cure before adding the objects into your resin? I want to do a 3D triangle shaped mold with flowers on each side, do you have an tips on getting the flowers to stay put?

    1. Hi Brittany, you can pour the next layer when the previous layer starts to gel. The gel time varies amongst resins, but occurs shortly after the pot time expires.

  3. My question is: for pouring layers, can I mix all the initial resin at once? Or do I need to wait to mix each resin layer individually?

    1. Hi Grace, when your pour layers, you should only mix the amount of resin you need for that layer.

  4. Hi, I am trying to make batman multi-sided D&D dice for a friend. I have little polymer clay bats I want to suspend in random places inside the resin. The resin is alcohol ink yellow with the bats inside. However I have tried letting the UV resin sit until it begins to gel and place the bats and at first they stayed. After curing completely they had sunk to the bottom again. How can I avoid this and have nice suspended bats throughout the die?

  5. Hi
    When I set the object on top of the first pour, the whole surface of that initial layer gets wavy and swirly. It looks like I may be disturbing that first layer, and that’s causing the waviness? How would I avoid this? Should I wait until the surface is harder and won’t get disturbed when I set it?

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