More Ice Resin Pendants

I love doing mini collage bezel pendants with Ice Resin.  I learned this technique from Jen Cushman – who was the teacher for the classes at The Queen’s Ink in my last blog post.  Here are some I made in Jen’s class at Bead & Button in Milwaukee as well as a few I made in my studio.parrot

“Green Parrot” – Art Mechanique hobnail bezel, Iced Enamels (chartreuse & torched copper), vintage images and book paper, metal flower (old post earring).


“L’amour Francais” – Art Mechanique large heart hobnail bezel, Iced Enamels (Carnelian & Ivory), Iced Enamels Inclusions German Glass Glitter (sky blue), vintage images  & book paper, vintage watch gears, old jewelry pieces. Links made of black onyx, stone, crystal and paper mache beads made on ParaWire Vintaj Arte Metal black wire.


“Royal-Vauxhall” – Rue Romatique oval bezel, Iced Enamels (turquoise & ivory), postage stamp image and words, scrapbook transparency image,  vintage watch gears. Attached to knotted leather cord necklace with bronze metal fibers (class taught by Susan Lenart Kazmer).


bird“Steam Song” – Bird on Branch bezel from The Enchanted Gallery, handmade Indian papers, script scrapbook paper, tiny black onyx bead, vintage watch gears. Necklace made from chunky chain and links of cherry quartz and glass beads.

Check out the Ice Resin blog for inspiration, tips, techniques and tutorials.  I’ve found lots of videos on YouTube as well.


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Classes with Jen Cushman

Last weekend I had the great opportunity to take three classes taught by Jen Cushman at The Queen’s Ink in Savage, MD.  This wonderful shop is a crafter’s paradise – with loads of rubber stamping, paper crafting and mixed media supplies.  I have taken some Ice Resin classes with Jen before, but they have all been jewelry focused.  This time, two of the classes were art and assemblage creations and I found myself diving into new techniques and loving it.

First on Friday night, we created a journal cover, using paints, stamps, collage papers, grunge board letters and pens. She also taught us to create wire embellishments that we attached to the cover as well. When the collage was completed, we coated the entire cover with Ice Resin. journal1

Here is a close up of the wire embellishment.  We started by using plain paper towels to wipe the paint from our hands – this later became the resin “paper” we attached to the wire form we created.  I added a small bezel with a little face in it to the center of the flower.

Saturday’s class was a resin heart necklace – I’ve done this type of class before so was more comfortable here. I chose a few bits out of my jewelry stash – a carved wooden bird and a leaf branch – both former pins that had lost their shanks. Iced Enamels in torched copper and carnelian were applied to the bezel, then a collage of papers and dictionary words was added. The bezel was filled with Ice Resin and the bird and leaf were carefully set in.

After a break for lunch,  Jen taught the class to form metal fibers using a torch; to create clasps with wire;  and to attach jump rings and the fibers to silk ribbon to complete a necklace.  Since the class was full and I had experience with these techniques, I helped out with the instruction, and completed my necklace at home.

Sunday, we worked on assemblage pieces, learning to use the molding putty to reproduce found objects in resin. Jen also taught techniques for finishing the resin reproductions with paint, Iced Enamels and Gilder’s Paste. Did you know you could use Iced Enamels on cured resin?  And on bare wood as well – I used torched copper in the largest section of my box.

The resin castings I chose for my piece were a hardware piece and a frozen charlotte. The doll had been cast in white resin, so just a touch of gilder’s paste was added. The hardware piece was given a coat of German Silver Iced Enamels and a touch of celtic bronze gilder’s paste.

The bottom sections were done with Iced Resin dripped with alcohol inks and resin tints; some dictionary paper; and resin mixed with glass glitter. In the center section above the dictionary paper, I mounted a little cat chasing a butterfly pin I had in my stash. I added some gilder’s paste to it as well, to bring out the detail and to make the little butterfly blue.


I had such a great time learning from Jen, who is an awesome teacher. I am so excited to have new techniques I can use with Ice Resin and all the Ice Resin family of products.

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Faux Druzy for a Real Friend

Druzy stones are all the rage, but they can be pricey and don’t come in the shapes or colors you may want. How to create the druzy look you want? Combine Ice Resin with glass glitter and you get a stunning focal piece that looks like a druzy. This heart focal was originally created for a contest in which I had to create several pieces using different Ice Resin techniques. Once the contest was over, I wanted to do something different with this piece. And I have a dear friend who loves druzy stones. Why not an original piece just for her?
The pendant was made by mixing an aqua green glass glitter into Ice Resin, then filling a small Art Mechanique hobnail heart bezel with the mixture. The glass glitter is chunky, so when the resin is set, it sticks out of the bezel in all directions, like the crystals in a real druzy.  I added a butterfly cut from an orphan post earring.
The colors were just right to combine with some rectangular African “turquouise” (a type of jasper) I had in my stash as well as some silver mesh covered beads and chunky gunmetal chain. I can’t wait to visit her soon and see her wearing it.

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Girl in an Ivory Heart

Turning a damaged metal costume jewelry component into a one of a kind pendant was easy using Iced Enamels and Ice Resin. The metal heart was discolored but had a nice shape and would be a perfect bezel. New color was applied using Iced Enamels Ivory Relique powder, then a vintage image was placed inside the heart using Ice Resin. The back is covered with mulberry paper, also sealed in resin.


After attaching a pendant bail, I created a necklace with vintage faux pearls, chain, chunky yarn and a vintage rhinestone clasp. The clasp had been missing all of the large stones, but I found four pink ones in my stash that fit perfectly.


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Christmas Swag redo

I made a Christmas swag several years ago and found it in the attic this year. The little boxes were all smushed and the teddy bear bow kind of bedraggled. I took those off and updated it with stuff in my stash.doorswag1

A cool curly peppermint striped pick found at a shop in old Occoquan VA, a wooden heart covered in vintage music paper (a project started and rejected), a vintage elf ornament who had lost one of his skis (but who needs skis?), a rusty snowflake and a “Peace and Joy” charm.  doorswag2

Add in a bit of ribbon found at Goodwill (I believe it was a Container Store sample) and my door looks very inviting now. Merry Christmas everyone!

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Bead and Button Show Part 2

I really wish I had the funds to purchase everything I wanted at the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee, but I don’t, and I don’t have the space for everything either.  So, although choices were hard, I did make them.

A new artist whom I had not seen before was Anna Chernykh of Russia.  She creates wonderful jewelry findings and pendants works under the name AnnaBronze.  Much of her work is very organic.  I selected two snail pendants and a pair of shell charms. annabronze

She also does wonderful steampunk work and I could not pass up her steamship pendant or the gear charms.annabronze2

I stopped by Green Girl Studios as well. I can’t seem to resist their pewter beads and charms. This trip I snagged charms in the shape of a mushroom, pea pod and dragon. I also purchased a dragon pendant.greengirl

An artist whose work I had heard about but not seen in person was Anne Choi. She does amazing silver work and I could not pass up this grasshopper button.annechoi

I don’t usually buy fancy clasps, but I was intrigued by those made by Jenny Ratcliffe of Hidden Treasures LTD. She creates silver clasps with vintage and antique buttons. I purchased three clasps. Not sure if the bat was originally a button, but isn’t he awesome! These clasps are made to be seen, not hidden at the back of the neck, so will have to design special pieces to showcase them.hidden

I also picked up some older items. The broken frozen charlotte dolls were probably from the late 1800’s or early 1900’s.charlottes
The black trilobite, however, is a fossil piece. I have already made a mold of the trilobite and want to cast it in resin or precious metal clay.

I tend to be a supply hoarder and always want to save special pieces for a special project, which never seems to get done. I’m hoping to start breaking that habit and be able to show you what I’ve created using these special pieces.


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Bead and Button Show Part 1

My sister and I had a blast at the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee at the beginning of this month.  We each took 5 classes and learned some great new techniques.  We also shopped, and shopped, and shopped.  So many great beads and findings to purchase.  My favorite section features the bead artists.  I always manage to pick up a bead or two from these creative folks.

I wish I could remember who made this lampwork frog bead.  I purchased this from the silent auction during the bead social and didn’t get a card with the box. I LOVE the detail on this bead and look at those eyes.  Can you believe it is only 1 1/2″ tall?


Maureen Henriques of Pumpkin Hill Bead always has wonderful lampwork. I can’t seem to resist her beads. This time I snagged an adorable hermit crab in a purple shell, a pair of tiny penguins and a selection of lampwork round beads.
























Another wonderful artist I purchase from is Michelle McCarthy of Firefly Design Studio. Her ceramic beads have wonderful natural motifs. This time I found a bee bracelet topper, dragonfly pendant, cranes cabochon and a pair of small starfish beads.


A new artist I discovered, also working in ceramic, is Andrew Thornton, of Allegory Gallery. I purchased these wonderful seahorse pendants.


I had seen the beads created by Vladislav and Kremena Ivanova of Golem Design Studio in Bulgaria before, but this is the first time I’ve purchased any pieces. I fell in love with the snail pendant and had to get the little matching ladybug beads. And since they were so well priced, I picked up the flower pendant as well. The color on these ceramic beads is so vibrant!


There is so much more to show you, but I’ll do it in my next post.


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Off to Philadelphia

I’m headed to the Quinlan Artist Doll and Teddy Bear Convention next week.  The convention days are Thursday and Friday, with workshops and seminars and the public show and sale is on Saturday.  I have four gallery pieces (which I will put up in a post after the show), plus six other new bears for the show. Most all of my bears are one of a kind works now, as I just don’t like making the same thing twice.  There are way too many cool mohair styles and colors to try. So meet some of my newest creations:


Darby is 11″ tall of curly gold mohair. Simply adorned with a beaded necklace that says “LADYBUG” and with a metal ladybug bell.


Sonny is 12″ tall of beige sparse mohair. He proudly wears a medal, but won’t tell me what it’s for.


Shelby is 10″ tall of tipped grey mohair. Her bow is made from a vintage silk scarf that belonged to my mother, and her pansy pin is also vintage.


Gilbert is 4 3/4″ tall of tipped grey/blue mohair. His boat is a thrift store find, spiffied up with a little paint.


Lottie is 4 3/4″ tall of gold mohair. Her collar is vintage crochet trim and accented with a vintage blue button.


Rosebeary is 4 3/4″ tall of blue mohair. She is adorned with scraps of vintage crochet trim and her wings are made from vellum paper covered with Ice Resin.

I will be bringing a few more pieces as well.  They are currently in my etsy store – ElizabethTaylorStudio.


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I Accept Your Challenge

I have decided to try my hand at entering online challenges. What are they? Usually, a designer, manufacturer or retailer posts a contest on their blog challenging their readers to create a project. The challenge may either be to use a certain product or tool; or to create within a specified theme. Tim Holtz has challenged readers of his blog to make something using his Tattered Florals die from Sizzix.

Now, I am an out-of-the-closet Sizzix addict. I have a large number of these wonderful die cutting tools and was trying to curb my addiction when Tim Holtz began designing for the company. His tattered florals dies is the second one I purchased (the first was the Fanciful Flight butterfly). So, thankfully, I didn’t have to go out and purchase a new die. Now, what to make and with what?

Let’s make this harder – try to tie in this challenge with the contest being sponsored by Jo-Ann Fabrics to Create with 8. Choose only 8 craft supplies (from a list of 20) and make a project using those 8 and only those 8. I looked over the list – chose and deleted from my 8; and finally came up with these supplies to use

  • unpainted wooden letter
  • acrylic paints
  • cork tiles or rolls
  • felt
  • wooden beads
  • buttons
  • scrapbook embellishments
  • net or tulle

Here is my completed project

The large wooden letter “B” was painted with acrylic paint and then sanded along the edges to distress it somewhat.  I used the tattered florals die to cut the cork and printed felt.  The die cuts four different sizes and shapes of flowers. Since I wanted extra small flowers available, I cut small pieces of the felt just big enough to cover that part of the die. I didn’t end up using the small pieces, but they can go on another project.

Cork and felt flower pieces are laid out to see which way they look best.

One of the cork flowers broke when I picked it up so I tore off the petals, painted them with lime green acrylic paint, and attached them to the back of a button which was highlighted with banana yellow and bright pink paint.  I added the largest of the flowers in both felt and cork and used yellow thread to sew all the layers together.

I attached some light pink and light blue nylon tulle to the bottom left of the letter, then attached the flower.  Underneath, I wired on some charms made from colored wooden beads and scrapbook embellishments.


At the top of the letter, I made a hanger from simple loop links of wooden beads, attached to the back of the letter.  I had a wood bird bead that I wanted to add – another charm was made with it and a few colored beads.  I wanted to hang this on the front of the letter, so I wired it on, but didn’t like the look of the wire on the front.  I grabbed my Atlas saw (a gift years ago from an aunt who worked at Atlas – a maker of toy trains) and cut one of the wood beads in half.

I attached this with Ranger’s Glossy Accents and set it aside to try.  I’m not very patient and normally would have probably messed with it, but it was time for dinner, so it was allowed to dry overnight. The bird hangs quite nicely now and the wire is camouflaged.

Now, pink is not normally my color but I am pleased with how this turned out. And the project was completed in time (Tim’s deadline is tomorrow, and Jo-Ann’s is the end of the month). Now – what will be my next challenge?

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Gifts for Treasured Friends

I have a large stash of beads and beading supplies.  This included several tubs of costume jewelry, old and not so old, waiting to be recreated into something new.  Many are bits that are broken; or earrings who have lost their mates; or beaded necklaces, out of style or missing clasps; but still all have great potential.  Digging through the stash, I was drawn to this piece first – a carved floral pendant with asian symbols on the back.  It looks like it might be jade, but I don’t know for sure.  I did know that it was the perfect piece to be the focal point of a necklace for my friend, Diane, who has Japanese heritage.

I dug through more of my stash, pulled out beaded necklaces in golds, greens and blacks.  I looked through all my green glass beads to find just the right shade, set them out and then found my go-to bottle of black glass beads.  Black goes with everything.

I didn’t use the necklace with the gold, green and purple beads, but I took apart the other two. I attached the pendant to a green/clear glass bead and attached that to a gold filigree bead from the now disassembled gold necklace. The layout began to take shape with large oval black beads from one necklace, the green glass beads, the gold filigree and tiny gold beads from the other necklace and lots of round black glass beads.

The completed necklace shows off the pendant beautifully, the rich black and golds interspersed with just a touch of the green.

Another friend had a birthday the same day and we were celebrating them together. Back into the stash for new inspiration.  I found a silver toned pendant, a beaded necklace (marked Japan on the clasp), some porcelain blue and white beads and lots of round silver toned beads. 

Now to take apart the blue necklace and layout a new design, using the cobalt blue beads from the necklace, the porcelain beads and the round silver beads.

The blue and silver are a stunning combination and yet allow the pendant to take center stage.  After I had given the gift, Nancy stated that blue is her favorite color.

So, old bracelet you never wear because the style is outdated? Or necklace that has lost the clasp or begun to come unstrung? An earring who has long lost it’s mate? The great thing about beads and baubles is that you can restyle them over and over again. Take apart that necklace and use the beads for a new one, or just use some and create a pair of earrings. Look for glass, porcelain or semi-precious stone beads in pieces at the thrift store – look beyond their current design and see if they can become something new.

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