Cutting a long story short, I had the joy of attending a workshop in making resin jewellery this weekend. It was run by paper and textile artist Jennifer Collier at her gallery / studios Unit Twelve in the glorious Staffordshire countryside.
In the first half of the workshop we learned about how to mix and set the resin, and were set to work picking and choosing from all kinds of found objects - stamps, feathers, beads, buttons, jigsaw pieces - you name it... As it happened I'd brought some things of my own too - some copies of old family papers, a few rolls of washi tape, some packs of replica papers from a museum, some antique and new buttons, a few bits of fabric (and Mr Fort - who brought various Star Wars related bits).
After just two hours we had all our pieces in the moulds with the resin poured in. Feeling most pleased we headed off for the evening, ready to return for part two the following day. The workshop has to work this way, to allow time for the resin to dry. In part two we popped (and in some cases whacked) our pieces out of their moulds, got messy with some really hardcore glue and drills, and attached the jewellery findings of our choice. You can see all the pieces we made *here*.
Jennifer is a brilliant workshop host, incredibly well organised and attentive, with a wonderul range of 'stuff' to play with. She also has that rare talent of slowly and subtly building everyone's confidence throughout the session; recognising everyone's individuality and understanding how to help them get the most from what they're doing, confidently and happily. And she plies you with more tea and cake than anyone could feasibly squeeze in*. The workshops are running again in August - go to Unit Twelve and click on 'workshops'. Highly recommended.
*Ahem - tea and cake most definitely not at the same time as playing with wet resin. Health and safety nightmare apparently! Jennifer was very careful to make sure we enjoyed them both separately, she's good like that.