How to Make a Resin Paperweight

Nearly everyone has seen objects embedded in resin paperweights. If done right, the effect is fascinating-the object floating, forever weightless and frozen in time. Though it does take some care in its execution, making your own resin paperweight is relatively easy with enough practice. It's a great way to preserve a favorite keepsake, artwork, flower or even cherished creepy-crawly pets, such as spiders and scorpions.

Choose a mold. The process is exothermic, meaning it releases heat, so you need to use molds made of metal, PVC, food-grade plastic or other heat-resistant materials.

Determine how much resin you will need. Fill your mold (or molds) with water and pour the water into a measuring cup. Dry your mold thoroughly before using it with the resin.

Prepare half of the resin you'll need. Most resins require a catalyst agent to harden the resin. The addition of the catalyst is what releases the heat, and you may need to adjust the amount of catalyst you use to minimize the excess heat. Keeping the exothermic reaction to a minimum results in a better quality result.

Fill your molds to the halfway point. Allow the resin to cure until it develops a jelly-like consistency. Don't allow it to cure completely.

Place your embedded object into the resin. If your object is porous, coat it with resin and allow it to cure completely before embedding it. If your mold is filled upside down, be sure to place your objects upside down, as well.

Finish filling your molds. Make the remainder of your resin and pour it evenly over your objects until you fill the mold (or molds).

Allow the resin to cure completely before removing the mold. The resin should be hard to the touch and not tacky. Let the paperweight sit, untouched, for a couple hours to prevent any fingerprints.

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