How to Colorize Resin & Apply Jacquard PearlEx Powders

In the tutorial we will be covering how to mix and colorize Nunn Design 2-Part Resin and apply Jacquard PearlEx Powders to create a splash of color. Each piece is unique and one-of-a-kind.

For this tutorial I cover how to do this technique in different types of bezels, open bezels, earrings, flattags and rings!

Here is an outline of what we will be learning:

  • How and why to clean Nunn Design Bezels
  • How to apply and remove packing tape on Open Back Bezels
  • How to mix Nunn Design 2-Part Resin
  • How to colorize Nunn Design 2-Part Resin with Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigments
  • How to add Jacquard PearlEx Powders

Learn How!

Supplies :

Nunn Design Bezels
Nunn Design Earrings
Nunn Design Rings
Nunn Design Flat Tags
Nunn Design Resin Kit
Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigments – Blue, Black, Red & White
Jacquard Pearl Ex Powdered Pigment 3g-Gold

Other Supplies Needed:
Q-Tips
Rubbing Alcohol
Wet wipes
Toothpicks
Gloves
Timer
Glossy business cards or card stock
Plastic Bags, such as a Ziploc
Packing Tape

Tools:
Scissors


Fast Tutorial Video:

Watch the Colorized Resin with PearlEx Powders Fast Video for a quick overview of this technique. For some of you, this will be enough to get you started!


Long Tutorial Video:

Watch the Long Video and see the complete process!


Preparing Your Nunn Design Bezels:

Step 1. The Nunn Design Findings are oxidized to provide the aged look to the precious metal plating. The oxidization, when it comes into contact with the mixed resin could change the color of the resin. To avoid this, clean the bezel thoroughly prior pouring the resin within the finding. To clean, get the tip of a Q-Tip wet with rubbing alcohol and clean away any of the blackened oxidization on all the surfaces of the bezel.


Preparing Open Back Bezels:

Step 2. To create a solid backing for the Nunn Design Open Back Bezel that we are using in this tutorial, cut a piece of packing tape and place it on your work surface. Place the Open Back Bezel onto the tape. To make sure the tape is burnished down and fully attached, use your fingertips to press the bezel down onto the packing tape and rub back and forth on your work surface. If it isn’t fully attached, the clay will seep out from underneath the sidewalls of the bezel.

Tip: Check to see that your packing tape is clear and there is no residue or mottling in the adhesive. If there is, it will show up on the backside of your finished Crystal Clay piece when you remove the tape once the clay is cured. Try to use an area of the tape that does not have blotches or marks. If you are curious about other tape options, you might be interested in reading this blog post.

Step 3: Trim away any excess packing tape from around your Open Back Bezel to avoid the curing clay piece from potentially being disturbed.


Preparing Earring Posts:

Step 4: For applying resin to earrings, I have a piece of styrofoam that I got out of a box that came with my packing supplies. I just put a little piece of tape over the top of it and then just poke down all of my post earrings right into the styrofoam and now these are ready to go!


Preparing Wire Earrings & Rings:

Step 5: Before you mix your resin, create a level surface for any rings and earrings with earwires. I used the gap between two wooden blocks for the ring shanks to rest while the resin was curing. Cover the blocks with a clear packing tape. The tape will allow the rings to easily be removed from the wood if there is any overflow of resin.


How to Mix Nunn Design 2-Part Resin:

The Nunn Design Resin Kit contains:
A 4-ounce bottle of clear epoxy resin
A 4-ounce bottle of epoxy hardener
2 precision tips to screw onto the bottles
5 mixing cups
5 mixing sticks
Printed instructions on how to mix the resin

Step 6. Read the resin instructions for safety concerns regarding the Nunn Design Resin. Put on your latex gloves and I would recommend safety glasses.  I wear readers so I think that my eyes are protected.  Make sure you have a pile of wet-wipes on the ready!

Step 7. To mix the resin you’ll want to have an exact one-to-one ratio. The one-to-one ratio has to be one tablespoon of Part A first and one tablespoon of Part B. This is a volume thing, not a weight thing. You have to mix the full mixing cup of resin to have the resin properly activate. I thought this was an excuse to get me to use more resin, but trust me, it isn’t! It is important to pour Part A first into the cup and then Part B. It is a chemical thing about part A being heavier or something.

Place one of the mixing cups included in the Nunn Design Resin Kit onto your table.
I suggest getting your eyes level with the resin so you can see the lines on the measuring cup. Remove the lid to Part A of your resin kit and slowly pour the resin into the mixing cup up to the 1 Tablespoon mark. I suggest that you go slow until you start to gain more confidence.  When you start to get near the 1 Tablespoon line, tilt the Part A bottle down, slowing the flow of the resin.  Slowly drizzle the resin into the cup until you have hit the 1 Tablespoon mark EXACTLY! To end the flow of the resin, twist the bottle.  Use a wet-wipe to fully clean up resin from the edge of the bottle.  Make sure to put the Part A lid back onto the resin bottle.

I fold my wet-wipe over to make sure I don’t contaminate Part B when I clean up the edge of that resin after I pour it. I am also making sure that I don’t get any of the resin onto my hands.

Following all the same steps used for Part A, pour Part B into the mixing cup until it is EXACTLY at the 2 Tablespoon mark. Clean up the edge of the resin bottle and securely twist the Part B cap back onto the resin.

Step 8. Set your timer for 2 minutes. Using the stir stick from your Nunn Design Resin Kit, slowly and carefully stir your resin scraping the bottom of the cup and the sidewalls as you stir. Go slowly because it is easy for the cup to overflow.  I hold the cup down at the base and use my fingers to help rotate the cup around. Stop from time to time and scrape the resin from the sides of the stir stick and continue to stir for the full 2 minutes. If your resin is still cloudy after your timer has gone off, continue to mix until clear.

After mixing is complete and your resin is clear, scrape both sides of your stir stick on the edge of your resin filled cup.

Another habit that I have developed is being aware of where I rest my stir sticks.  To avoid getting resin all over my work surface, I like to rest the resin stir sticks in one of the mixing cups or onto a small Ziploc.  I can easily peel the resin off of the Ziploc and reuse it.  I can also reuse my stir stick once the resin has fully cured. I do know people who wipe out and reuse their mixing cups, but I haven’t done that so I cannot recommend it.


Colorize Nunn Design Resin with Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigments:

Step 9. For this tutorial, I used Nunn Design Resin and Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigments in Blue, Red, Black and White to create Pantone 18-4029.

Pantone 18-4029
Formula:

  • 1 large toothpick tip White
  • 1 large toothpick tip Blue
  • 1 large toothpick tip Black
  • 1 tiny toothpick tip Red

To create Pantone Colors, download the Pantone Color Formula Cheatsheet!

Step 10. To colorize the resin, place another empty resin mixing cup onto your work area. Pour the clear, mixed resin into the cup, filling it to the 1 TSP (you may need more of the full TBSP mixed, but you can easily colorize more).

Step 11. Add toothpick tips, according to chosen formula, of Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigments into the clear mixed Nunn Design Resin and mix fully until blended. If you want the color to be even more opaque, add more of the Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigment.

TIP: Be sure that the colorant does not equal more than 10% of your resin as having more than 10% could cause issues with curing.


Apply the Colorized Resin:

Step 12. I tend to work in a small area (typically my kitchen table), so I like to work on a surface that projects can be easily moved around and not disturbed. Place some business cards or some heavy card stock onto your work surface, making it easy to move the pendants without getting any resin on your fingers.


TIP: I would recommend covering the card with glossy packing tape. This will prevent the resin from sticking to the paper.

Step 13. Drizzle a small amount of colorized resin onto the base of the bezel. Agitating the resin will help dislodge any air bubbles lurking below the surface. Continue to drizzle the colorized resin until the bezel is domed.

Using a stir stick or toothpick drag the resin over to the side edges. You can also use the stir stick to remove excess resin.


Apply the Jacquard PearlEx Powder:

Step 14. To create the splash of color, scoop up a wee bit of Jacquard Pearl Ex Powdered Pigments onto a toothpick. Place the toothpick over the wet, colorized resin, and gently tap the top of the toothpick. Drops of mica powder will land into the resin. Keep tapping until you have a desired look and effect.


How to Babysit Your Curing Resin

Step 15. If you see bubbles rising to the surface, using your hot breath, breathe on them. It isn’t a “blow” sort of breath – more of a “huff” sort of breath. The hot air will make the bubbles expand, rise to the surface and pop. As the resin starts to set-up and becomes thicker, it will be more difficult for the air to rise to the surface. Make sure to check in on the curing resin and double check for air bubbles. If you do have some bubbles that won’t pop with your “huff”, use a toothpick to gently drag them over to the sides. This agitation process will help them to pop. When the resin is thick and taffy-like in texture it is time to let it be. If you attempt to pop bubbles at this time, you may end up with a gooey mess.

Step 16. If you have resin that has over-poured, wait about 6-12 hours until the resin is at its “soft cure” phase. Use a pair of needle nose pliers to bend back the resin from the bezel. The resin will easily separate and peel off of the bezel.

Step 17. Let the resin cure for 12-14 hours. The resin will be hard to the touch but will continue to cure for the next 72 hours.


How to Clean Up Resin Overflows

Step 18. If you have resin that has over-poured or seeped under the bezel and onto the card, wait about 12-18 hours until the resin is at its “soft cure” phase. Remove the bezel from the card. The resin will still be non-tacky but still flexible. Use a pair of needle-nose pliers to bend back the resin from the bezel. The resin will easily separate and peel off of the bezel.


TIP: It may take longer than 12-18 hours depending on your room temperature. You will want the resin to be firm, but not super hard.


How to Remove and Clean the Tape Off of the Cured Resin

Step 19. To finish your Open Frame, remove the packing tape from the backside once fully cured. If you have any excess residue from the packing tape on the backside of the resin, use the tape to remove it like you would when you are removing lint or animal fur from your clothes. Keep touching the packing tape onto the sticky surface until it is no longer sticky. 

Step 20. If the residue isn’t coming up, try Goo Gone! Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the best results. I applied a couple of drops on the backside and let it sit for over a minute. I then used a stir stick to scrape the tape residue. To remove all that sticky mess, pour some rubbing alcohol onto a wet-wipe and wipe it away.


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