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Resin bangle

Capture beads or found objects in a playful, newfangled bangle

Fun and bright, these bracelets make great homes for your favorite beads and bits. My first bangles were inspired by apple juice Bakelite bangles, which often include floral designs. I had a collection of vintage plastic, and the small pieces fit nicely into a bangle mold. After you master the basic bangle, play with colorants to make striped layers. 

SUPPLIES

  • 15–70 4–20 mm beads or found objects
  • EasyCast Clear Casting Epoxy
  • bangle mold
  • mixing cups
  • plastic gloves
  • safety goggles
  • chainnose or bentnose pliers or tweezers
  • emery board, metal file, or 200-grit sandpaper
  • heat gun
  • wet/dry sandpapers in 320, 400, 600, 800, 1000, and 1200 grits
  • wooden craft sticks
  • buffing compounds (optional)
  • lathe and muslin buffing wheels (optional)

Bangle mold, buffing compounds, lathe, and muslin buffing wheels from sherrihaab.com. Check your local bead store for supplies. 

INSTRUCTIONS
Resin bangle 1
Step 1
Following the manufacturer’s directions, mix 1⁄2 ounce each of resin and hardener in a cup. Place the mold on a flat surface. Pour the resin into the bangle mold about half full. Briefly hold a heat gun over the resin to gently remove any bubbles. Use the heat gun again after a few minutes if any bubbles remain.
Resin bangle 2
Step 2
Wait until the resin thickens slightly, then place beads and found objects using pliers or tweezers. Allow to cure. You can speed the curing process by placing the mold near a 60- to 100-watt light bulb. Resin is fully cured when it is tack free and hard to the touch.
Resin bangle 3
Step 3
Mix 1⁄2 ounce each of resin and hardener in a cup and pour it into the mold. Add another layer of beads or found objects and allow to cure.
Resin bangle 4
Step 4
To remove the bangle, flex the mold and push on the back to gently loosen the bangle. Push the center of the mold inward (almost inside out) to free one of the edges.
Resin bangle 5
Step 5
To remove the rough edge at the top of the bangle, sand it with 200-grit sandpaper or an emery board.
Resin bangle 6
Step 6
Continue sanding the bangle in a bowl of water using wet/dry sandpapers. Sand the top and inside edges with 320, 400, 600, 800, 1000, and 1200 grit papers, in that order. Use fresh water after each paper. Polish the bangle if desired.

Polishing option

For a crystal clear finish, use buffing compounds on a muslin wheel. Start with a cutting compound and a stitched wheel at a low speed (1000–1500 rpm). Use an unstitched wheel with a polishing compound for a final buff. For more information, visit foredom.net.

Tip!
  • To avoid bubbles, warm the resin and hardener before working. Set the bottles under a light bulb or in a warm place. 
  • If you use large (20 mm) beads, make sure they’re flat; otherwise they won’t fit in the bangle.
  • In step 2, make sure to wait until the resin has thickened before you add beads or objects. If you add them too soon, they’ll sink to the bottom.
  • The mold is reusable, so flex it back into shape after removing the bracelet.
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