Alcohol Ink Pretty Pendants
Updated: Aug 29, 2019
Alcohol Ink Pretty Pendants
If you have been on Pinterest, Instagram or any artsy forum lately you have seen the frenzy that has begun surrounding alcohol ink painting. There are endless posts of these amazingly cool art pieces that swirl with kaleidoscope colors flooding the internet lately. My interest had been peaked but I had not yet jumped down that particular rabbit hole. One night while mindlessly scrolling, the internet read my mind (as it does) and dangled an ad for an alcohol ink painting class nearby. Well folks, as you may have suspected, I took the bait. I was excited to learn a new trick and found a great teacher in Arielle of Lemesto who does a bunch of cool classes as well as private workshops in the Orlando area. She taught us to make some pretty awesome alcohol ink coasters. The class was really fun and sparked some creativity. AND I made some awesome coasters!
Shortly after taking the class I went and got some alcohol ink of my own and started to play and got hooked quickly. It is a very therapeutic art form, as soon as you learn to let it be what it is going to be. Sometimes the swirls go where you weren’t planning, or a color combination looks more like barf than seafoam but you learn to love it!! I made some more coasters and paintings and some of the outcomes were so pretty I wished I could wear them. That’s when I knew that I wanted to create some jewelry. Alcohol ink works best on a non-porous surface so I started searching for plastic disks and decided to go with a clear 1.5 inch disk. I got them on Amazon, they are actually listed as keychain blanks, but they work perfectly for pendants.
When you set up a workspace for alcohol ink you want to protect anything you don’t want to be a different color. I use newspaper to line the table and work on a thin cardboard surface. It is easiest to use a smaller piece of cardboard and tape the plastic piece to it. (I don’t recommend that for other alcohol ink projects but with the smaller pieces I find it easier to tape them down if you will be using a heat gun or hairdryer, so it doesn’t move on you.) Once you have your disk secured to your cardboard you are ready to get your ink on! It can feel intimidating but don’t worry. Worst case scenario, you don’t like, you can douse it with alcohol (erase the ink) and start over.
First decide on your color or colors, if using more than one color I suggest complimentary colors to start with until you get the hang of it. Now you can drip some color onto your pendant, a couple drops to start with, you can add more later. After you drip your color you can apply some of the isopropyl alcohol, you only need a tiny bit for a reaction. You can apply it with an eyedropper, q-tip or paintbrush (in the video I flicked it on with a small brush). Once you have added the alcohol to get a better reaction you can try a few things. You can physically move it by picking it up and tilting it side-to-side to let the colors run. You can also use a heat gun or hairdryer (set to low) to quickly move colors causing a bursted look. You can also simply just blow on it. On your first try just play a little bit until you get a handle on it. Like I said you can put the isopropyl alcohol on a paper towel and wipe it completely clean. Below is a video of a quick demo using a plain white coaster (the pendants are a little small for a video). Have fun making your whirly swirlys until you have a piece (or pieces) that you love. Now you can let things dry, a few hours will do the trick.
Now for the resin. A lot of people are intimidated by resin but it’s really easy as long as you are prepared. The two most important things to have are wax paper and a hair tie. Wax paper is the only thing resin will not stick to so you want to line the whole area you will be working on with that. The hair tie is because you never, ever, EVER want to get resin in your hair. TRUST ME. So gather those and the other items on the list. There a few different types and brands when it comes to resin (I used EasyCast Clear Casting Epoxy) so you always want to follow the instructions that come with it to a T. Once your resin is mixed you are ready to pour, you’ll want to work quickly, as soon as the resin is properly mixed pour ASAP. Try not to let the resin pour over the sides for this project (if it does you can Dremel or sand off later). Also if you are using a pendant with a pre-cut hole in the plastic you should roll some wax paper in the hole as to not plug the hole. It should self level or you can use an old credit card or similar to level it out (I stash expired cards, gift cards and hotel keys for resin!) Once you’ve poured let it be for 15-20 minutes (try to work in a place that will be undisturbed) as it settles some air bubbles may form, if you have any bubbles simply blow on them (or use your heat gun or hairdryer) and they will pop. After that your resin will need to cure about 24 hours. Then your little wearable art is ready to rock!! I used colored cord and attached with jump rings and voila!!
Get ready to duck and cover for all the compliments that will be THROWN at you!!
What you need:
· Round, clear plastic key chain blanks (or similar)
· Ink paints
· Isopropyl alcohol
· Eyedropper (optional)
o Plastic cups (3)
o Popsicle stick
o Heatgun or hair dryer (optional)
o Wax paper
What to do:
· Create a painting workspace with newspaper, use masking tape to attach pendant to a small piece or cardboard
· Drop alcohol ink onto pendants (tip:start with complimentary colors) followed by a small drop of isopropyl alcohol
· Gently rock your piece side to side and/or blow on it to create the effect you want (tip: you can also use a heat gun or hairdryer set to low; you can keep adding color and alcohol until you have a desired finish)
· When you are happy with your piece(s) line your work area with wax paper and gather supplies needed for pouring resin (tip: work in an area that is out of direct sunlight and will not be disturbed)
· Mix resin as directed and pour onto your pieces, trying to keep from flowing over the edges, watch for bubbles and blow on them to pop
· Let dry overnight
· If there was any over spill or the hole was clogged use sand paper or a Dremel tool to sand off, drill out hole
· Create your one of a kind jewelry!