How to use resin in open bezels

how to use resin in open bezels

How to use resin in open bezels

by Penny Reid

Originally written February 2017.  Updated April 2020.

open bezels with resin

If you love the look of resin ‘floating’ in a pendant, then you are in the right place.  Today, I ‘m going to teach you how to use resin in open bezels.  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 bezels

First layer resin pour

First, apply your bezels to the sticky side of masking tape. 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.

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


  Easycast resin

Next, get your supplies ready.  I used Easy Cast epoxy resin for this project.  You can use a different doming resin for this project, as long as it’s clear. EasyCast resin is 1:1 (one part A to one Part B) mix with a 4-minute mixing 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 resin

 

pour resin into bezel

blowing through a straw to get rid of bubbles

covering resin in bezels to keep dust and dirt out while curing

To pour your first layer of resin for these open bezels:

1) Mix the resin.
2) Use a stick to fill the bezel one-third full.
3) Pop the bubbles with a straw and toothpick or a heat gun.
4) Cover the bezels and let them cure for 24 hours.

 




 silver charms

Second layer resin pour

This is probably one of the best things about using resin in open bezels.  You can add things to your resin and bezels where it looks like it’s floating!

For these resin pendants, I used metal charms.  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 charm

 

loop 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.

love charm

 

 

placing crystal to cover charm hole

To cover the hole in this charm, glue a gemstone over it.

measuring resin

 

pouring a small amount of resin

dipping a charm in resin to break the surface tension

 

placing a charm in a bezel with resin

 

covering the charm with resin

Next, add the charms to 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 resin

 

adding a small drop of blue to resin

 

adding a drop of white to resin

 

adding a drop of pearl pigment

 

making a design in the resin

The colored layer goes in your open bezels next

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.

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

Cover the bezels and let them cure for 24 hours.

bezels filled with resin

 

bezels covered while resin is curing

Third layer resin pour

Now it’s time to fill that bezel to the top! Mix and pour the resin the same way you did in the first layer resin pour.

bezels with tape removed

 

 

sanding bezel backs on sanding stick

Fourth layer resin pour

Remove the tape from the back of the bezels.  There was some residue left on these open bezels, 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 pendants

 

resin jewelry making tools

 

 

attaching a jump ring to an open backed bezel pendant

Finish the open bezel pendants

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.

To make them wearable, add jump rings and necklaces.

open backed resin pendants

And on the seventh day, I was don

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 resin

 

round copper necklace with resin

 

round 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.

 

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

Unpublished Blog Posts of Resin Obsession, LLC © 2020 Resin Obsession, LLC

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22 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
Ania

I’ve bought much thiner open bezels, than you have here. Someone recommended me to use uv harden resin, but is possible to use epoxy resine for it?

Reply
Randi

I’m attempting open bezel resin earrings. It works great on store bought molds but I want to change up my shapes. I tried making my own with wire and when I try to peel off the tape they bend. Any suggestions on how to seal the pendant without the tape?

Reply
Julie

Thanks for the tutorial this is so nice ! Where did you find your open back bezels ? They are so pretty !

Reply
Sylvia

Hi, can you clarify re the last pour? Was that onto the back of the bezel to fix the dullness left by the tape?

Reply
Katherine Swift

Hi Sylvia, you are spot on! I did the pour on the back to make it glossy.

Reply
Cearise albright

Did you do the fourth pour on the back? I’m still trying to figure out the sanding part

Reply

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