You can use resin and your imagination to turn an old table into a work of art. Gather old photographs, magazine or newspaper clippings, invitations, art brochures or fabric, and create a collage. Use bottle caps, buttons, toys or game parts and arrange them to give your table three-dimensional intrigue. Seal your work in layers of resin to create a heavy, durable table that will add pizazz to any room.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Collage materials
- Découpage glue (optional)
- Acrylic topcoat (optional)
Sketch the design for your resin table.
Prepare the top of your resin table. Clean the table. Use photographs, magazine and newspaper clippings or fabric to découpage to the top of a table and then coat with resin. You can also arrange a collection of found objects such as old buttons, bottle caps or plastic toys and game parts then seal them in a deep blanket of resin.
Calculate the amount of resin you will need to create your table. You will need a lot of resin to pour a thick clear tabletop. There are 231 cubic inches per gallon of resin. One square foot is equal to 144 square inches. For example, 1 gallon of resin can create a 1/4-inch thick tabletop for about 6.5 square feet, a 1/2-inch thick tabletop about 3.2 square feet or a 1-inch thick tabletop about 1.6 square feet.
Mix the resin according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Pour the resin onto your prepared tabletop. The project works best if there is a frame around the edge of the table to contain the resin once poured. Thin layers of resin work best. Avoid stress cracks, ridges and an uneven surface in the resin tabletop by pouring thin layers of resin.
Remove air bubbles. Resin has a tendency to develop trapped air bubbles when poured. Allow the air bubbles to rise to the surface of the tabletop. Eliminate air bubbles by heating the poured resin with a hair dryer. The heat will hasten curing in addition to removing air bubbles.
Cure the resin according to the manufacturer's instructions. Run a fan across the poured resin to dissipate and even-out the heat generated when pouring resin. Thick resin tabletops often take a week to fully cure. Do not put paper or a heavy or sharp object on the resin epoxy surface until it has cured for a few days; the paper may glue itself to the resin and the objects may dent the resin tabletop. Do not test the resin with your fingers to determine if it has cured to avoid unsightly fingerprints from becoming permanently embedded in your resin tabletop.
Repeat until you poured the resin tabletop to the thickness you want. It is common to build up the thickness of resin tables by pouring multiple thin layers of resin.
Clean the resin so it is free of oils, grease and loose contamination (such as dirt or lint). Keep the resin at a constant temperature of 20 degrees C or warmer for 24 hours before and after the resin pour. Add an acrylic topcoat to protect the resin surface from UV, scratches and heat.
Tips and warnings
- Always work in a well ventilated space when using resin.
- Resin is a plastic and so it may soften with heat. Do not place an item that is hotter than about 51.7 degrees C (including a hot coffee cup) on the resin tabletop or the tabletop may soften to the point of leave a permanent dent, ring or depression.
- Keep resin out of direct sunlight (direct UV exposure). Resin will turn cloudy and yellow and lose its shine when exposed to sunlight.
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