DIY: How to Make Simple Resin Flower Earrings

I have always absolutely adored resin cabochons and especially resin flower cabochon earrings, so I don’t know why it’s taken me this long to ever order some for myself – and I kind of ordered a lot at once! I got all these from ebay, most came from China. I really only wanted a few to make some earrings for myself and friends but it turned out cheaper (and some only possible) to order in bulk. I’m actually hoping to set up an Etsy site to sell some jewellery in the coming months so you may see some of these there :)
I did a DIY last year on How to Make Basic Stud (Post) Earrings which is basically exactly the same as what I’m doing here. I just thought these were so cute that I couldn’t resist doing another one especailly for them :)
You will need:
Resin Flower Cabochons (available from Ebay, Amazon or Etsy), Post Findings, Super Glue
Dot some super glue on the back of the cabochons and place on studs. Leave for several hours or overnight to dry. As soon as they are dry they are ready to wear :)

You’ll want to pick a stud finding that is similar size to the cabochon so that the glue has more surface to stick to. If the post finding is too small it won’t be strong enough to hold the cabochon.

Earring Post/Stud findings are available from craft stores. Ebay, Amazon and Etsy sell them too, plus I’ve got a few links to craft sites in my links tab :)

Lots of jeweller’s use E6000 as it’s one of the strongest glues for metal, just be warned that it does have rather toxic fumes though (will give you headaches). I prefer to use a non-toxic superglue (such as Ultimate Glue by Crafter’s Pick) or mixing a small batch of non-toxic epoxy resin (such as Little Windows). 

Make sure to double check the size of the cabochons when you’re ordering them – they can range from a couple of millimetres up until several centimetres and the photos can be a bit misleading sometimes.

I’ve had great experience ordering these direct from China (on ebay). You can get all sorts of bulk lots for less than $4 and they pretty much always offer free postage (although it does usually take a couple of week to arrive, sometimes even up to a month).

Watch out for sellers on ebay or Etsy that sell mixed packs of all sorts of different colours and styles. They are usually a little more expensive but worth it if you don’t want to end up with a number of bulk lots with heaps leftover.

It’s easy to change the colour of the cabochons with nail polish too :)

A few other uses for cabochons:
A hope to do a few more DIYs with these in the near future but a few ideas include glueing them to ring findings, sunglasses, bobby pins, shoes, a clutch or a headband. You can drill a hole in them to create a bead. You could glue a magnet to the back of them to make some super cute decor for your fridge. They would make adorable game tiles too.
Are you in love resin flowers too?? What sorts of things have you made with them?

Happy Easter for tomorrow everyone :)

Linking up with:  Funday MondayWhims Wednesday,

DIY Fresh Flower Earrings

The little violas have been so pretty in my garden this summer. I was sitting there thinking about perhaps an arrangement or DIY I could do with them, when this idea struck me – to wear them as a pair of earrings! 
You will need: 
Flowers, headpins, earring backs, jewellery pliers. 
Or you can also use: Two small basic studs – ball/crystal ones are nice
(Tip: I use sterling silver headpins as I’m a bit sensitive to metals)


1. Insert headpins (or post earrings) through centre of flowers – making sure it goes through a thick part of the flower. 

2. Cut the headpin back to 1cm (a bit over a 1/4inch).
3. You’ll probably get a bit of pollen and muck over the headpin, so it’s a good idea to wipe this off with some paper towel (some flowers/plants can be quite irritating to the skin, make sure your not allergic too, especially if you are wearing these for a wedding/special party) I also wiped it with some alcohol to make sure it was really clean.

4. Your done!

These violas were quite delicate so I had to be rather gentle with them. They probably lasted about an hour looking ok. I think this would be such a pretty idea for a party or wedding.

If you find them a bit difficult to insert I find rubbing my ear and the post with antiseptic cream (Savlon or something similar) really helps them go in.

Here are a couple of other flowers I’ve tried:

Daises with gold posts.
Some red flowers with a pair of sparkly rhinestone studs. 
The petals kept falling of these ones though!
Have you ever made fresh flower earrings or jewellery? What sort of flowers have you used? Let me know how you go making these :)

Linking up with: Whims Wednesday, Funday Monday, Monday Funday,

DIY Resin Post Earrings Made with Stickers! (Doming Technique)

I first started working with resin about a year ago and have absolutely loved it. Although I’ve found  it a little challenging at times (spillages, bubbles, resin setting too fast, or not setting at all), the results have been well worth it. So I thought it was about time I started some tutorials here to hopefully inspire you to try it out too.
This is a beginner’s resin tutorial on the doming technique. Although its reasonably easy, I suggest that if you are completely new to resin that you first try casting into moulds (just to help you get a sense of the resin). I hope to do a tutorial on that in the coming weeks (I have something coming that I’m just waiting to arrive). There are some great tutorials on youtube for beginners so I recommend looking there. 
You will need: 
Jeweller’s Resin, Plastic Coated Stickers (or any flat image – see note just below a bit), earring posts, stirring wands, small measuring cup, timer, rubber gloves, paper towel, plastic sheet (from display book) or a doming tray, plastic box to cover resin from dust, kebab sticks, a fine-tipped marker pen to make the measuring cup, gas mask (if your sensitive to fumes).
Purchasing Resin:
You should be able to  buy jeweller’s  resin  from most craft shops. Most resin kits come with measuring cups and stirring wands too. 
You can get it online in Australia from Over The Rainbow. In the States I know Fire Mountain Gems sells some, Amazon too. Little Windows Resin (my favourite so far) is available through their website. They ship internationally, have great prices and great service too. They also have the most amazing resin supplies. 

Certain Resins can give off toxic fumes, so you’ll need to work in a well ventilated area. If you’re working outside you need to make sure that your work surface is completely flat and that nothing will blow away. I personally find it too difficult working outside. Wearing a gas mask can help and even some clear glasses if it irritates your eyes too much. One of the reason why Little Windows Resin is my favourite is because it’s non-toxic and really doesn’t give off any fumes at all. It uses less chemical hardener, and doesn’t contain solvents or the usual nasties. It also gives the best results and least amount of bubbles than any resin I’ve tried. 

My Set Up: 
When working with resin I find it’s really important to have everything in place before you start. Once you’ve mixed up a batch you’ll have approximately 20-30 mins working time – so you need to move quickly. Having everything in front of will really help, especially if you are just learning. This is my set-up here, if you can see I even have a checklist I use to make sure I’m completely organised! (It’s easy to forget things) Once you’ve made the resin you won’t want to move it for at least 12hours, so make sure you work in a space that you can leave it.
Instead of Stickers:
Instead of stickers you can use anything – magazine clippings, photos, drawings, paper stickers, wrapping paper etc. You will just need to coat them back and front with a couple of layers of sealant, such a Mod Podge (I like the paper one/green label best). You may need to flatten them in a book afterwards as they tend to curl up.
1. Place selected pieces on a doming tray or sheet of plastic (I just use an A4 pieces from a display book). A doming tray catches any spilt resin so that it won’t stick to your pieces. If you’re just using a sheet of plastic make sure to spread the pieces out (more than pictured) so that if you do spill any resin (it does happen) it won’t disturb the rest of the pieces. Take a chance to check for any dust on the pieces too, use a blower brush or a soft cloth to wipe any that need it.
2. Mark the measuring cup for both the amount of resin and hardener you’ll need according to your resin’s instructions (most resin’s are a 1:1 ratio, the one I’m using is a 2:1 though). Mix the the resin SLOWLY, if you mix it too fast you’ll get lots of bubbles. Also make sure to scrape the resin from around the sides and from the spatula into the cup every once in a while so that it’s all mixed evenly. For a small batch like this I usually mix it for about 3 mins, until the swirls disappear and the resin clears. Leave the resin to rest for about 5mins (check your exact  instructions for this too). After it’s rested you can remove any bubbles from the surface with the spatula.
3. Carefully get a small amount of resin onto the spatula and let it drip over one of the stickers. The resin will form to the exact shape or your pieces. When it hits the edge, it will stop. As long as you don’t put too much on it won’t overflow. If you do have resin that overflows and you are using plastic or a lower doming tray, you will need to move the piece to a clean area of the board so that it doesn’t stick.
4. If the resin doesn’t find the edges of the stickers by itself you can encourage it with a toothpick or kebab stick.
Hopefully you won’t have bubbles, I do have a couple (as you might be able to see here). Sometimes you can lift the bubble out or pop it with the stick. Quite often the bubbles will pop by themselves after a few minutes anyway. Some resins I’ve used have had a lot of bubbles, others not so many. It can also be dependant of the temperature too and definitely how quickly you mix the batch. I’ve had the most success with the little windows resin though, I hardly get any bubbles with this one. If you do have a stubborn bubble that you just can’t pop or lift out you can try waving a lit match about an inch above the piece. The fire will draw up the oxygen from the bubble. It works well but only do this as a last retort and carefully too.  I have seen resin artists that use this as well as warnings written against it (although I am yet to come across a reason why this is  bad??) I have burnt and discoloured pieces in the past when doing this so that might be one reason why. If you do this just be careful :)

5. After all the pieces are done, cover them with a plastic box or container to prevent dust. Let them dry for at least a day.

6. After a day they will ready to touch. Don’t worry if they are still a bit pliable (the resin takes a few days to harden completely).
7. Set up your work area as before, make sure to have earring post findings on hand too. For the reverse side I do them straight onto plastic as the curve of the set resin makes it harder to  position them on the doming tray. You should spread these out more than I have here too as it can get messy. I forgot to think about this for the photo – whoops!
8. Spread out the pieces like I’ve done here. Drip resin onto the pieces as before, using a stick to move any up to edges. You’ll probably only want a thin layer of resin for the back. If you like, you can colour it with resin dye, oil paint, glitter or mica powder. I just left it clear for these. 
9.  Drop a post finding carefully in the centre. Position with the kebab stick. It should stay in place. If you are worried about it moving though (sometimes they do slightly), you can always glue it in place before hand. 
10. Let them to dry under the plastic box for  another day.
They are ready! They worked out really well I think. I was slightly worried that the resin might seek through the sticker backings and darken the design somewhat – but it didn’t. As you can see I did stuff a couple up – the two in the front I spilt resin over so they ended up completely flat rather than domed. They they still look ok but I didn’t bother putting studs on them.

As the resin shortens the length of the studs slightly you might find you can only use the nut backs (as pictured) or smaller plastic backs rather than large, circular comfort backs. See how you go though. You can always stick the posts directly onto the backings after the resin’s dried too.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Resin is really fun and definitely worth something to try out as the results are so lovely and look so professional too. Don’t be disheartened if this takes you a couple of goes – it took me ages to get consitently good results with this. If you have any questions or problems don’t hesitate to contact me, I’m always happy to help. 
Have you ever made resin jewellery? I’d love to hear what you’ve created.  If you try out this technique make sure to let me know how you go :)

The 5 Essential Earrings to Own (and Pack When Travelling)

In the last few years or so I’ve worked out a few formulas to help me pack for a vacation and also to help fill in some gaps in my wardrobe. Today I thought I’d share an earring formula that helps me work out the best choices to take.  
The 5 Essential Earrings to Own:
A BASIC NEUTRAL – Something simple that will go with everything, including a necklace, like a round stud or a small drop, generally metallic but not necessarily.   
A DRESSY NEUTRAL – Another simple earrings but a little bit more dressy such as a pearl or something with some sparkle, usually a post earring.
A POP OF COLOUR – a solid pop of colour of a favourite colour, something that will go with the majority of your wardrobe. These are usually a statement post or a single beaded earring.

A NEUTRAL STATEMENT – A larger neutral earring, usually metallic too, that is fairly simple such as a hoop, tassel or disc. 

A FUN STATEMENT – An earring you love wearing just because it’s awesome, something that will make a statement on it’s own and look great with a basic tee. These can be single coloured, multi-coloured, patterned, textured, whatever you like. 

A Few of My Favourite 5 Earrings to Pack:
These links just go to the stores – I can’t imagine any of these would be online still
Blue Studs LOVISA (Pop of Colour) // Studs made from Flatback Gem (Dressy Basic Neutral) // Small Silver Squares PASTICHE // Large Silver Circles PASTICHE // Red Statements (refashioned with nail polish) BIG W- (Fun Statements)
These are a few of my favourite earrings and ones I wear at lot of. I would say I wear a basic neutral about 40% of the time. I think it’s really important to have a few great neutrals that you absolutely  love, they are really the best types of earrings to invest in. Whatever colour I choose as my ‘Pop of Colour’ earrings, I’ll try to choose a ‘Fun Statement’ earring in the opposite colour i.e. a cool coloured pair and a warm coloured pair. This gives me more variety with my outfits.
I hope this is of some help.
What do you think of this formula? What would you consider as your essential earrings?

Purple Necklace Refashion – 1 Necklace into 2 Pairs of Earrings and a Different Necklace

I recently bought this wonderful necklace from Coles Supermarket. It’s an absolutely gorgeous colour – a deep, vibrant purple with a hint of cobalt blue. I’ve been on the lookout for a lovely purple necklace for quite some time now so I was very happy to come across this one. Although I love the design too, I found that I just couldn’t make it work for me – I’m more of a fan a larger scale, statement pieces and this one just seemed to get lost on me. I thought about taking it back but I just loved this purple so much (it was a great price too) I’d thought I’d have a go at refashioning it. 
As you can see the pieces were joined together with jump rings. These were easy to pull apart with my jewellery pliers.  (I have some more information about pliers here).
I choose to use the central piece to make a statement pendant necklace, which I simply reattached to original chain. I then took the two medium pieces and glued stud findings to the back of them with superglue (see this post for more info on how to make basic stud/post earrings). I left the little join rings on them just for now but these are usually easy to cut off with jewellery pliers (it can sometimes just leave the finish a bit sharp, which is why I left them on here – you can cover sharp bits with some more superglue though). For the last couple of small pieces I just added some earrings hooks as they had the perfect attachment (info about attaching earring hooks here).
Here are the end results:

I am absolutely in love with this necklace now!  Even though the main reason I wasn’t wearing it before was that it felt too small on me, in simplify it, it actually makes a much greater statement. I love it with a simple black tee, yesterday I wore it with a striped V-neck too. My other idea for refashioning this piece was to make it into a brooch, it would be the perfect size for that and nice and simple too. 
I also adore these studs. I love their statement size, yet they are still nice and light and comfortable to wear. I was worried that the post findings weren’t going to be large enough to stick to them (it’s best when making studs to use the largest finding possible in relation to the earring bit). They are perfect though and I’m sure I’ll get a lot of wear out of them. 
That’s it – I’m really happy with this refashion. I always love making jewellery from other bits of jewellery. It’s so fun to have such unique pieces.

If you’d like to do a similar refashion I suggest looking at Forever 21 or Target USA (or Target Australia)- they both have lots of similar styles at low prices. Ebay is of course another great place to buy cheap statement pieces that are great to refashion. 

If you like this, I have some similar refashions I did ages ago too:

Neon Orange Bracelet to Neon Orange Earrings

Making Clip-On Earrings More Comfortable

How gorgeous are these earrings!! And would you believe they were only $5 at Harris Scarfe! I know you can’t really see too well in these photos but they have a little metal bump inside them where it pinches your ears and its rather sharp! I thought about converting them to posts but it was going to be rather difficult with this style. Instead I came up with another solution – to make a little cushion to stick over the top of them. I have these little coloured foam pieces that were perfect too (I’m not sure what they are called as I’ve had them since I was a kid. I imagine you could still get them from craft stores though. Anyone know?? )
(How do you make long images like this larger in Blogger??)
So all I did was cut out two little circles from one of the white pieces of foam and glue them over the bumps – it took 2mins. They seem pretty secure  and make the earrings considerably more comfortable. I am noticing that the foam is flattening over time so I may need to replace them every so often – which really wouldn’t be a hassle at all.
Hopefully this helps! I imagine this would work with other clip-ons too. The pinch was slightly firmer after putting on the foam but the clasps on these particular ones were a little looser than usual. 
Other Options
If you’d like more help making clip-ons more comfortable I suggest looking at the Earring Doctor (I’ve never actually ordered anything from here myself but I’ve heard good things about them). They have all sorts of things such as specific clip-on cushions and clip-ons looseners/tighteners (called Clip-Kease, or Comfort Key for Clip-Ons).  I just did a quick search on amazon too and they have a few things too:

How do you like wearing clip-ons?? Do they tend to hurt your ears too?
PS: I did a post earlier about Sterling Silver Clip-Ons which I’ve found much more comfortable.