How to use resin in open bezels

how to use resin in open bezels

How to use resin in open bezels

by Penny Reid

open bezels with resin

These pendants require a few extra steps then your average pendant but these bezels are beautiful inside and out and by doing several pours over the course of a few days — using clear resin — you can take full advantage of the depth of these bezels and the result makes it worthwhile!

  open backed jewelry bezelsopen jewelry bezel

STEP 1: Resin Pour #1

First I prepared the bezels…

If you don’t have any bezels, you can get open backed bezels for resin here.

I always use a good quality masking tape for this part.  I press as firmly as I can without ripping the tape to create a seal, then I wrap the tape up the bezel.  This makes it easier to handle.

  Easycast resin

Then I got all my supplies ready…

I used Easy Cast epoxy resin for this project (you can use whatever resin you are most knowledgeable about or prefer, as long as it’s clear). This resin is 1:1 mix with a 4-minute stir time.  Note: always follow the directions exactly for whatever resin you are using.

I used a mixing cup, measuring spoon, mixing stick, gloves, masking tape and wax paper. Note: I used a wood stick because it is all I had on hand but I much prefer the Resin Obsession stir stix.  The design allows you to fold the resin better and introduces fewer bubbles as a result.

  mixing resinpour resin into bezelblowing through a straw to get rid of bubblescovering resin in bezels to keep dust and dirt out while curing

Next I did the first resin pour…

1) I mixed the resin.
2) Then used a stick to fill the bezel one-third full.
3) I popped  bubbles with a straw and toothpick.
4) Covered the bezels and let them cure for 24 hours.

 silver charms

STEP 2: Resin Pour #2

First I got my charms ready…

Charms are great for embedding in resin! I fell in love with these ones! I used two different charms for this project, one charm has a loop (which I cut off) and the other has a hole (which I covered).

cutting a loop off a charmloop removed from charm

sanding sharp edge off charm

Using pliers, I snapped off the loop, then sanded down the rough edges left on the charm.

I covered the hole in this charm by gluing a gemstone over it.

Then I added the charms into the resin…

I only mixed a little resin for this next step. I used ½ tsp of resin and ½ tsp of hardener, and it was more than enough. Note: this is less mix then the manufacturer recommends as generally you have to do a minimum of a tablespoon size measure.  In my experience the cure can be a little soft.  But because I knew I was doing another pour over this one I wasn’t worried about it being a little flexible.

Put in a little resin, then instead of putting the charm directly in the resin, dip it in your cup of resin first.  This will help reduce bubbles when you put the charm in the bezel. Add just enough resin to cover the charm.

adding blue color to resinadding a small drop of blue to resinadding a drop of white to resinadding a drop of pearl pigmentmaking a design in the resin

Next I added the colourant…

Okay, so by the time it was ready to put the LOVE charm in the second bezel, I decided I wasn’t so in love with it after all. I changed course and decided to use some resin colourants instead. Maybe because I’m an indecisive libra or just fickle, but it’s not uncommon for me to change the plan as I go.  This sometimes results in nice surprises and other times in a complete disaster.  In any case, this is what I did next:

1) I mixed the resin with a drop of Castin’ Craft blue opaque colourant and used a stick to drop the tiniest bit of colourant in the bezel.

2) Then I added some Castin’ Craft pearl opaque colourant, which has a little bit of sparkle. You can see in the picture I cheated here and put it directly in the bezel instead of mixing it with resin first, I don’t recommend this, you should really mix it with the resin first in a cup and then add it.

Like this post? You may be interested in  Kawaii resin tutorial

3) Then, I put some teal coloured sparkles in a little cup and added only the tiniest amount with a toothpick. Why the cup you ask? Well, because more times than I would like to remember I have ended up with way too much sparkle then I planned.  This way, I have more control.

4) Finally I used a toothpick to swirl it all together until I got a pattern I liked.

covering bezels while resin cures

Finally, I covered the bezels and let them cure for 24 hours…

bezels filled with resinbezels covered while resin is curing

STEP 3: Resin Pour #3

Time to fill that bezel to the top! So I did the same as in Step 1:

1) I mixed the resin.
2) Used a stick to fill the bezel to the top.
3) Popped bubbles with a straw and toothpick.
4) Covered the bezels and let them cure for 24 hours.

bezels with tape removed

sanding bezel backs on sanding stick

STEP 4: Resin Pour #4

First, I removed the tape and sanded…

I removed the tape from the back of the bezels.  There was some residue left, and the resin was dull (this is normal). I sanded them down on my 1000 grit-sanding block (which I wet so that the little bits wouldn’t go everywhere, especially in the air.)  Note:  you can use sanding paper here instead of a sanding block.  Also, some resin sneaked out, and I just used my nail to chip it off. The good thing about using high quality bezels like these is that they stand up to a little scratching without leaving any marks.

resin poured into open backed bezels

Then, I did the last resin pour…

Yay!!! It’s been a long journey and I can’t wait to see the results! Note: this step can be replaced by using Resin Spray by taping up the sides of the bezel and spraying.  Unfortunately I did not have any, but hey I’ve come this far, what’s another 24 hours?

open back bezel resin pendantsresin jewelry making toolsattaching a jump ring to an open backed bezel pendant

STEP 5: Finishing touches

So if you are keeping track you will notice that I have done four resin pours, each requiring 24 hours (minimum) to cure, making this a 5-7 day project. Although lengthy, it’s not complicated, and I think the best way to take advantage of these deep bezels.

I added the jump rings and necklace …

open backed resin pendants

And on the 7th day I was done…

In the heart pendant, the charm appears to be floating.  In the other pendant, by using opaque resin colourant, the depth of the pendant makes for some real interest!

hexagon necklace with resinround copper necklace with resinround silver necklace with resin

Of interest…

Here are some other open backed bezels I’ve done.  (All are Nunn Design). These required only two resin pours because they are smaller and shallower.

For the bezel with the love and the bezel with the crown: I used Castin’ Craft pearl opaque on the back resin pour giving it a little sparkle behind the charm.

For the hexagon bezel: Because I thought the shape of the bezel was so neat and really the best part and I didn’t want to take away from it so I did not add a charm, instead I added only a teeny bit of Castin’ Craft blue opaque and a teeny bit of Castin’ craft pearl opaque to the resin.

Which one of these is your favorite?

What else would you like to know on how to use resin in open bezels?

7 Comments

Deb

OMG! I so love the floating charms. They are so unique looking and the range of tiny things to add to these bezels is endless!

Thank you for the tutorial!

Reply
Lena Bey

Love it. I need to give this a try. The first time I tried this, I had a huge mess (tape was too loose). Quickly learning though.

Reply
Murwa

Beautiful work. Have you ever made one with tiny flowers or leaves? Would you be able to explain the process?

Reply
Julia

What kind of tape do you use there on the back of the bezel?
Is that a special product, then what do you call it, or can i use any kind of plastic foil?

Reply

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