Making resin for the first time: what I learned


Beck Iannucci

I’ve always enjoyed resin and the creative things artists make with resin. I’ve wanted to try resin myself for quite a long time. I wanted something that is less toxic than tradition resin and wouldn’t bother my dog’s nose. After lots of research, I settled on Art Resin due to its odor being stinky, but not super toxic. It’s actually marketed as resin you don’t need to wear a mask with, but I like to wear mine anyway. I set up my materials in the basement and got to work.

The first problem I endured was with the lighter I was using. For resin you can use a lighter to get out the bubbles so the resin doesn’t dry with them. Using the lighter with my gloves on actually got resin in the clicker and now it doesn’t work. It may be a pain to put on gloves and take them off constantly so smaller batches at a time definitely helps.

Laying out your beads beforehand also makes a huge difference. When putting beads in your resin creations they have to be backwards and upside down. It takes time to find the beads you need, spell them regularly, and then flip them. If you do this before making your batches you’ll have to use the lighter less and you won’t have to stress about time.

Be carefully with glitter! I can’t emphasize this enough. If you’re pouring glitter move farther away from your other projects. You may think you have good aim, but glitter goes everywhere when airborne.

Add glitter to your resin before pouring into molds! I like to add a little bit of white, silver, or gold glitter to add a nice shine and it looks good mixed with other colors. Just remember to not add a lot! A little goes a long way! This is only the base and if you want other designs you can’t go overboard.

Get a basic starter kit on eBay or Amazon. Molds and pieces for resin can start to get expensive fast. Of course certain molds won’t be found on cheaper sites. For those you can look at places like Etsy where many make molds and sell unique designs. But if you’re just starting you try and get a pack of basic molds for cheap. Practice makes perfect! I got a starter kit for $26 dollars on Amazon. The kit has 170 pieces. I got sand paper which is important no matter what you make. You want to take off any edges that could cut you or the person you’re gifting it to. I got a scale for weighing the resin along with measuring cups. Either method works, you just need to make sure you have an even amount of product. I also got tweezers which are good for dropping in beads and moving them around. It came with popsicle sticks as well. These can be used to mix the resin. I also like mixing different glitter colors together before pouring them into the mold with resin. I also got droppers. I don’t use them but you might be able to find a use. I, personally, don’t find droppers useful because resin and glitter goes everywhere no matter what you do. Lastly, I got tiny measuring cups and gloves. One pair of gloves is not enough. Buy a box for cheap. I haven’t tried reusable gloves so I’m not sure if the resin dries and peels off but it might.

Try tray/coaster molds. These are a basic mold that I love! It’s not too difficult to use and there are so many possibilities. Make sure to buy lots of cheap stickers or make some of your own. You can buy hundreds of stickers for really cheap on Amazon or make your own since stickers are relatively easy to make. I like adding stickers once the tray hardens. (Remember that if the try can bend it’s not done yet!) You can take it out of the mold and place on stickers where you like. If you have waterproof ones you need to put on a protective layer but this is where I love the glitter mixed with resin combo. For my Roman Sanders tray I stuck on the sticker and then mixed in some white glitter with the resin before pouring. The result is quite pretty.

When making keychains layer the half on top of the other half. I made keychain hearts for my friends. I made the first half. After the first half hardened I made the second part and carefully placed the first on top.

The key word is carefully. You don’t want to move anything in the second layer when placing on the first. Not overfilling the mold can also help with this.

My next piece of advice is to use decoden whip. I got some on eBay for $2 a color. You can get supplies for cheap if you’re willing to wait. Now, you can use decoden in so many different ways. I made myself a phone case with it. I sanded down the case with sandpaper and then used the whip. You can place decorations into the whip. I used some pins but you can certainly put in pieces of resin. I decided to incorporate my resin on the popsocket. I bought a cheap pack on Amazon and then put some decoden whip on the socket. Then all I had to do was place the heart on top.