I wanted to make a post on gem and jewel making, so others can learn from my mistakes. (Believe me, there were many).
My Alexstrasza costume requires a few jewels on the headband, necklace, and gloves. My first instinct was to go with what I knew how to do; sculpey formed and painted. The effect was… passable. At best. So after browsing a few incomplete tutorials online I decided to try my hand at making my own gems.
My sister left a box of something called Easy Cast on the counter. Easy? Perfect! I swiped it and read the back of the box directions. She had apparently lost the in depth pamphlet. There are two bottles inside that need to be mixed with a one to one ratio. Being the lazy thing I am, I estimated the measurements, mixed it up and poured it into the only mold I had- a paint pallet. After all, this was just a test.
A test I failed miserably. If the product isn’t mixed with the proper portions then the mold will remain sticky and the project is ruined.
At this point I went online, looked up the actual directions and invested in a real mold. It was time to get serious.
Here’s the mold:
Now to properly mix the easy cast you have to measure it out precisely. I didn’t want to dirty up any of my family’s measuring tools so I used a plastic spoon poured into a plastic cup. Stir stir stir. Then pour it into a second cup and stir some more.
Now it was time to decide how to color the gems. I tried a variety of methods with the following results:
Wow! That’s a really bad picture, huh?
Anyways, I’ll do my best to explain the slight variations between the gems.
The one on the very left is simple resin with glitter mixed in. The small circular one is clear resin with painted tin foil on the back. The large circle is dyed with food coloring, with glitter glued to the back. (I like glitter! So shiney…!!) The tear drop is also one with glitter mixed in, lots of glitter. LOTS. And the final one on the right is glitter with a little acrylic mixed in.
In all, easy cast was relatively easy to use. But it comes out slightly cloudy when it’s all dry. Food coloring worked to dye it with, but even with just two drops the mixture becomes very very dark. I hope my experience helps any prospective gem makers!