Mary Ellen Beads creates a swwet 16 themed necklace.

Secrets of Compelling Resin Jewelry Necklaces

3 secrets of Compelling Resin Jewelry Necklaces

Compelling resin jewelry necklaces start in unexpected ways. Time and again I’ve experienced giving the “perfect” gift. So, after several months in “resin heaven,” I’m declaring three secrets to creating compelling resin jewelry necklaces:

  1. Collect stuff
  2. Group, sort and rearrange
  3. Play

Collect stuff. Those who prefer minimal will find secret number one difficult. My resin jewelry necklaces morph from a purposefully collected, generally scavenged and everything-other-than-beads stash which includes bits and pieces to re-use, re-new or recycle, containers of paints, inclusions and inks, pictures, stamps and more.

Friends recognize my love of stuff, and gleefully hand me little bags of goodies: a bead here, a special scrap of paper there. Each item gets classified or sorted into a container as appropriate.

“Throw away nothing,” was Grandma’s motto. I can now see myself taking after her. I purge, reacquire, and purge again.

Group, sort and rearrange. Cupcake tins hold finds from walks on city streets, one-of-a-kind charms, earrings and pieces of broken jewelry and items of interest. A large fishing tackle box contains previously-owned jewelry for back stock. Another bin houses different sizes of buttons and trim useful for its texture. It’s almost as much fun to organize as it is to complete a piece.

I’ve commandeered a worktable in the studio to indulge my resin obsession. The table is perpetually covered in trash bag liners so I can move pieces aside and pour resin at any time.

Play. Preparing to pour resin in order to create resin jewelry necklaces puts me in the zone. I begin with a sense of expectancy. I form a line of bezels for the session: this piece with its first layer, this one to be domed, etc. (An ounce of resin allows for assemblage of multiple objects.)

First I paint my bezels of choice with medium, add pigmented relique or inclusions, and then use the heat gun to transform my base. If I don’t like the outcome, I scrape it off and try again. Once all my pieces are ready, I begin mixing resin. It’s a concentrated process because the timer’s on and practice has taught me to be anal about the time stirred, the time the mixture sets, and the time from start to finish in the pour.

For example, I added “16” to a collage resin jewelry necklace for a 16th birthday present.

Mary Ellen Beads creates a swwet 16 themed necklace.
©2015, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Resin Jewelry Necklace Sweet 16

Unexpected transformations intrigue me: brightness here, transparency there, layers of subtle effects. Pieces appear to be floating, suspended within a clear frame.

The more I play with resin, (I started this journey with a February class detailed in “Heart Gift, Inspiration You Love to Wear) the more I’m convinced of its magical properties. Backgrounds transform, themes coalesce, and creativity reigns in the magic of resin.


This resin bezel contains a collage of shoes from Mary Ellen Beads.
©2015, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Resin Jewelry Necklaces, Shoes


Here is a variety of resin jewelry necklaces bezels from Mary Ellen Beads.
©2015, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Resin Jewelry Necklaces, Bezel Variety



This is a resin jewelry necklace bezel for musical inspiration.
©2015, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Resin Jewelry Necklaces, Music


Here's a resin jewelry necklace themed red which and blue.
©2015, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Resin Jewelry Necklaces, Red White and Blue

Am I a resin jewelry necklaces fan? Yes. Ultimately the secret of compelling resin jewelry is to connect your heart and spirit to your efforts. I’m doing that.

It’s too early to tell, but I’ll probably have a resin bezel collection for display at this year’s Sandia Heights Art Studio Tour AND, I’ll likely have several resin jewelry necklaces at Amapola Gallery later this summer.

Do you like my secrets of compelling resin jewelry necklaces?


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