Maybe you’ve seen beautiful rocks and wanted to turn them into jewelry, only to realize they were too heavy to wear. Here’s a way you can make lookalike rocks that will fool almost anyone! The magic ingredient in this resin jewelry set is tea leaves. When added to urethane resin, an interesting reaction occurs: the resin begins to aerate and becomes full of bubbles. The resulting pieces will be speckled with rock-like flecks and become light as a feather!
Resin Supply list:
Quick-curing polyurethane resin
Castin’Craft Opaque Pigments: Red; Brown; Black; Green; Yellow.
Castin’Craft Translparent Dye: Red.
Two-part Silicone Putty
Small pebbles with a textured surface
Old tea leaves (You can recycle tea leaves from old tea bags for this project. Just make sure to dry them thoroughly by spreading them out on a plate for a few days before adding them to the resin.)
5-minute epoxy adhesive
Graduated plastic measuring cups
Plastic party cups
Jewelry findings/stringing materials:
2 silver ball headpins
2 silver eye pins
2 silver earring wires
2 6mm silver Swarovski crystals
4 10mm silver filigree leaf bead caps
2 3mm silver spacer beads
Realeather 2mm Black leather cord (1 yard)
2 3mm silver tube ends
2 4mm silver jump rings
Silver press stud clasp
0.21 silver 19 strand jewelry wire
2 silver wire guardians
2 size #2 silver crimp tubes
8 3mm silver spacer beads
14 10mm silver filigree leaf bead caps
Magnetic silver barrel clasp
Drill, drill bits (1.5mm and 2mm), round nose pliers, flat nose pliers, chain nose pliers, crimping pliers, flush cutters
Step 1: Make the Molds
Measure out equal amounts of Parts A and B of the silicone putty. The easiest way to do this is to roll each one into a ball and place them alongside each other.
Blend the two parts together until there is no marbling and the color is even.
Form the Silicone Putty into a ball and flatten it a little. Place it over the top of the pebble. Next, form the putty around the rocks until the pebble begins to taper inwards. This will ensure you can easily remove it once the silicone has cured. In order for your lookalike rocks mold to work, make sure it is ¼” thick all over. Press the silicone onto the pebble to pick up the texture, then press the mold lightly onto the surface so that the top is level.
Leave it to sit for 25 minutes. Test to see if it’s ready by pressing your fingernail into the surface. If it leaves a mark, then let it cure a little longer. If there is no mark left, you can demold it. Pull the Silicone Putty away from the pebble on all sides and then remove it.
Make additional molds using different pebbles so that you can cast several stones at a time.
Step 2: Mix the resin
Measure out ½ oz of Part A resin. Add color referring to the color recipes below for how much to add. For the pink earrings, add 1 drop of red pigment. Stir into the resin using an acid brush until completely mixed.
Add ½ oz of Part B to the colored Part A and mix the two parts together thoroughly for 30 seconds, scraping the walls and the bottom of the cup.
Pour this mixture into the larger party cup and mix for a further 30 seconds. Fill a 1-ounce cup halfway with dried tea leaves and pour this into the resin. This is the part that will make your lookalike rocks seem real!
Stir through the resin thoroughly.
Pour the resin into the molds until they are about 2/3 full. The resin will expand in the mold to fill it. If you fill the molds all the way to the top, you will have a lot of trimming to do.
Once the resin has cured, demold each pebble. If the resin doesn’t easily release from the silicone, leave it a little longer.
Whilst the resin is still warm and soft, use the utility knife to shave away the shiny back of your lookalike rocks and make the edges round the edges so that the pebble doesn’t appear flat on the back.
To drill a hole in the pebbles, decide whether you need to drill from top to bottom or sideways. Place them accordingly on a block of wood and drill through on slow speed. Hold them firmly so they don’t fly away. Alternatively, place them in a vise. The drill bit will easily pass through the aerated resin.
Be sure to wear safety goggles during this step.
Step 3: Cast additional batches of pebbles in color shades
For more resin jewelry ideas, use shades of gray, black and brown to make up other pieces of jewelry. Refer to the color recipes below.
Note: To measure a half drop, squeeze the bottle until the pigment emerges and scrape off half a drop with a tooth pick.
Brown 2, Black ½, Red ½
Green 1, Red ½, Yellow 1
Black 1, Green ½
Yellow ½, Red DYE ½
Step 4: Assemble the earrings
Choose two similar pebbles. Drill holes from top to bottom. String one pebble and a spacer bead on a headpin. Turn a simple loop.
String a crystal on an eye loop and turn a simple loop.
Open the loop and attach it to the pebble component.
Hook the other end of the crystal component on the earring wire. Make another earring to match.
Step 5: Assemble the bracelet
Cut 15 inches of beading wire and string on a crimp tube, the wire guardian, and the magnetic clasp. String the beading wire back through the crimp tube.
Use the crimping pliers to crimp the crimp tube securely.
String a spacer bead, a bead cap, a pebble and another bead cap. Repeat for the remainder of the lookalike rocks in this pattern until you make the bracelet is long enough for your wrist (allowing the length of the clasp). Finish with a spacer bead. String a crimp tube, wire guardian and the other half of the clasp. Thread the beading wire back through the crimp. Pull the crimp down to the last bead and pull the wire through to tighten it. Crimp as before. Trim away the excess beading wire on both ends.
Step 6: Assemble the necklace
Here’s where make your lookalike rocks come together! Use the 2 mm drill bit to drill a hole in each pebble from side to side. String a pebble on the cord and fold the cord back onto itself, 8 inches from the end.
Hold the cord on this loop between your thumb and forefinger on one hand and with the other, wrap the cord three times around the cord, starting from the loop end back towards the bead. Take care that the loops don’t cross over each other.
Bring the tail of the cord back through the loops – in from the bead end, out from the loop end. Pull up the knot, making sure the coils don’t cross over each other.
Work the knot back towards the bead to hold it in place. String another bead and create a barrel knot to hold it in place. Do this with the remaining beads.
Trim both ends to the same length. Mix up the 5-minute epoxy and apply it to the inside of the cord ends. Insert a cord in each end and leave them to set.
Open a jump ring and connect the cord end to one half of the clasp. Repeat on the other side of the necklace.
This bracelet looks like it would be as heavy as a …. well … rock. But it’s not when it’s made with resin.
These lookalike rock earrings look like something Wilma Flintstone would make and have in her jewelry box.
The texture of this rock necklace would look great with a chunky sweater.
Craving for more resin jewelry ideas?
Then you will want to get a copy of Resin Jewelry Making. I wrote the PDF ebook specifically for beginners to give them the steps to take to make something amazing with resin. It also includes several projects you can make this weekend. Buy now and it’s in your inbox before you know it!
Unpublished Blog Posts of Resin Obsession, LLC © 2021 Resin Obsession, LLC