DIY Paint Drying Rack! {and more resin adventures!}

Happy Monday folks! It looks like today is going to be sunny and hot, a perfect day for the beach…or to play with resin some more…or better yet both! I can make some resin stuff and escape the fumes and the temptation to bother it as it cures LOL! this weekend I used up the last of the big pint can of resin i bought and you know what? I really enjoyed the process of learning about it, so much so in fact I took my 50% off coupon to ACmoore yesterday and bought the even bigger quart can of it LOL! I was going to try the epoxy kind but they were sold out at both craft stores and I was not letting the 50% off coupon go to waste:) I learned something new this weekend about polyester resin, well several things actually but before we get into that I wanted to show you the drying rack I built for holding glazed or painted objects:

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The photo is self explanatory but basically I took 2 scraps of foam-core and glued them together then inserted sewing pins every 3/4″ or so. I think I might make one with the pins closer together to hold jewelry parts too! Maybe I’ll make a video but you’re pretty bright so I’m sure you get the gist. 😀

EDIT: I decided I wanted a board with the pins closer together for glazing jewelry components so I made a video, enjoy!

Resin Tip #25 Always use Mold Release!

While making my sea glass paper weights above I was impatient and did not prep the soap molds I used with mold release. Now there is a chance that the molds were the wrong kind of plastic but every kind of plastic I have used before have worked (even candy molds!) with mold release. The downside is that you have to plan ahead of time and spray the molds and let them dry, I’m not big on planning  so since I had 2 of that particular soap mold I through caution to the wind…

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Yep, bad idea.

Resin Tip #26: Use a heat gun to remove the stuck on plastic mold from your resin.

I was not about to let my resin paper weights go in the trash just yet so I cut apart the plastic mold and tried to bread the plastic off, not happening. So I grabbed my heat gun and heated the plastic and peeled it off. By the way I had the door open and 3 fans on during this unwise fume fest. I was able to pull most of the plastic off BUT the was still some bits of plastic stuck to the edges so I began sanding, first with a rough paper to remove the plastic then with a finer sponge to polish it. Please use a dust mask or respirator if you do this. That removed the plastic but let my paperweights dull and lifeless. We can’t have that now can we? so I grabbed my trusty Future Floor Wax with Pledge Shine (which has never seen a floor BTW) and gave them a shiny new glaze. It worked, dried rock hard and quickly! Yay! I needed to glaze all sides so did the bottom first, placed it on my drying rack and glazed the top and sides. After seeing how well that worked I glazed my green jewelry pieces from the other day. It got rid of the slightly tackiness of the ones done in silicone and it made the bits I had to file and smooth on the circle pendants disappear. It made my grimy fingerprints go away too and left shiny goodness in their place! Huh, I wonder how that stuff works on floors?

I also learned that larger pieces cast quicker with polyester resin. It was a dry 75 degree day when I made the paper weights and other items (I made sea glass embedded pendants and charms for earrings) and after pouring I took the molds outside and put them in the sun and covered them with a clear plastic tote. The paperweights were hot in the molds before I even went out and they were cured in a few hours while the pendants were still a bit tacky. The heat is key I think because you have to use 3 times the amount of hardener in the 1/8″ thick items as the 3/4″ items and each layer if resin requires less hardener if you are layering stuff. I also learned that you can color resin with dye reinkers for transparent items or acrylic paint for an opaque look. I have lots of both so that saves me money on specialty colorants!

I hope you found today’s post useful. Even if you never want to try resin after reading my adventure at least you can make a nifty paint drying rack for other projects like Christmas ornaments or tole painting projects.  Well, I am off to the beach today, maybe I can find some more sea glass or other treasures to bring back. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Resin experimentation {the results!}

Howdy folks! Yesterday I shared my bottle cap resin creations. The clear polyester resin took 3 days to cure at 69 degrees and 66% humidity. I used 15 drops of hardener to 1 oz of resin as the package directed for items 1/8″ thick. Today I am showing you my first cast resin pieces. I used the same ratio or 1oz resin and 15 drops hardener (catalyst) and I added a pea size dollop of green acrylic paint and some pearl ex to the mix. I think I was supposed to add the color and pearl to the resin before hardener but I forgot and added it after. No big deal, but the pearl-ex probably would have mixed in better, I had some lumps as you will see in the silicone mold. The cast resin took 5 days to cure, it was hard 24 hours after pouring but it was sticky for days. I tried a few different molds. The one that I liked the best was Casting Craft, it was smooth and the resin cured  quickest in here:

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I had a duplicate mold of this one by Makin’s Clay so I decided to risk using it. It seems sometimes resin could be permanent in some plastics. This worked great and it took maybe 12 hours longer to cure than in the Casting Craft mold. I am excited because I have lots of this brand!

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I LOVE the detail from the Martha Stewart silicone molds but they stayed sticky the longest. I know if the polyester resin is exposed to air (not touching the side of a mold for instance) it takes longer to cure or may remain sticky and maybe the matte finish of the mold affected the cure time. It has a slight tack to it at day 5 but it is getting much better each day.

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Please note! Before I poured the resin in the molds I washed the molds, dried them, sprayed them with Casting Craft mold release/conditioner and let that dry overnight. Already this procedure is more work than anything I would ever cook, geez Louise, but I was determined to use up this expensive supply that has a shelf life 🙂 After all the pre-show prep I mixed the resin, poured it and left it alone. That is the hard part. Really. I kept visiting my resin (don’t do that) and touching it to see if it was sticky (hence the fingerprints on the back) and sometimes I’d take it outside and put it in the sun because I read somewhere it could speed up the process but I don’t think it did a lick of good. I feel like the weirdo who plays classical music for his plants. Really, you should pour the resin and leave town for a few days, that’s your best bet! 🙂 I’ll let you know if I discover anything else about this fascinating medium. I reckon the epoxy resin is a much more user friendly and forgiving resin but I will not be trying that until I use up this bulk can of ever-loving polyester stuff. That’s it for me today, thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!