With Mr. Sew’s brother visiting for part of his spring break, I thought it would be a good time to pull out one of the more interesting projects I’ve been wanting to try: cuff links!
A few weeks ago I snatched up this book called DIY Bride at the library.
The customized cuff link idea in particular was very interesting to me, so I started gathering supplies. From Fire Mountain Gems, I ordered a bunch of cuff links (only $1.73 a pair!) with bezel cup settings already attached.
From Michaels I grabbed some 2-part epoxy resin, for about $10.
First, I asked Mr. Sew, his brother and my brother what kind of cuff link images they’d like. My brother wanted some cool-looking crosses, Mr. Sew’s brother wanted the first character of his Japanese name, and Mr. Sew (naturally) chose to use Keroro and Tamama’s heads. After they had all decided, Mr. Sew went to work scaling the images down to half inch diameter circles. We printed those out, and cut out the circles.
Mr. Sew decided to make everything black and white so as not to stand out too much, but really, these can be as colorful as you’d like.
Next, we pushed the image into the bezel cup. If it doesn’t stay on it’s own, you can use some glue to keep it from moving.
Then Mr. Sew made a little stand for the cuff links to sit in so they could dry evenly.
And now it was time to mix the resin! We kept a window open for ventilation, and used a plastic cup we could throw away later.
Following the directions on the box, we mixed equal parts of each solution together. Then we mixed it together…
…and poured it into the cuff-links!
We accidentally poured too much the first time, while trying to create a nice round meniscus.
Oops, right? Well, since the resin doesn’t set for a good 24 hours, we had time to clean it up. But it turned out there was another problem, because after the day-long curing process, the cuff-links still hadn’t set! We deduced that we hadn’t measured the resin and the hardener in at exactly-equal amounts, so we started over with more precision. The second time it hardened perfectly!
I’m quite pleased with how simple and effective this project turned out, but if I could add one more bit of advice – let the ink on your printed pictures dry completely! Some of our links look a bit “fuzzy” due to paper bleeding, so I might try a couple over again once my second shipment of cuff links shows up in the mail!
Will your men be wearing cuff links? What kind?