Tuesday, March 20, 2012

DIY Urchins

I love sea urchins, but I don't often find them in one piece on the beach so, like many people, I resort to searching for them in little boutique stores, which can be expensive. What is the solution to my first world problem? I cut out the middle man and create the urchins myself!

This is always a fun experience - so fun, that I thought I would share my step by step process for creating your very own faux urchin in resin.

What you will need:

- A real sea urchin (okay, so your wallet won't be totally safe, but keep in mind that you will be able to make several resin moulds as a result).
- Silicone 
- A chinese food container
- Pigments
- 2 paddle pop sticks
- A pair of plastic gloves
- 2 plastic measuring cups
- Scissors
- 2 plastic cup


1. Clean the surface of the real urchin

2. Place the real urchin in the chinese container

3. Mix up the silicone in a plastic cup using a paddle pop stick - 1:1 mix ratio by volume

4. Pour the mixed silicone over the sea urchin in the chinese container. Make sure the silicone is mixed properly or your mould will never dry properly and be sticky to touch. You also must make sure you mix enough to cover the urchin by 1/2cm. This will set in approx. 20 mins.

5. Break up the chinese container using the scissors. If you try to get the mould out of the chinese container without breaking it, you may stick your nail through the surface and your mould will be ruined.

6. Now, here's the tricky part - getting your real sea urchin out of the mould. I use little scissors and very carefully cut back the mould on the flat surface. Then I slowly peel back the mould and pull the urchin out. Surprisingly, the urchin survived in tact.

You will then have a mould for your resin!

7. Choose a colour and mix up your 2 part resin in a plastic cup. Stir for 20 seconds or until it starts to heat up and quickly pour it into the mould. I decided to make mine cream with a blue swirl though it. This will set in about 20mins but will not be hard for a few hours, so leave it in the mould overnight.

8. Very carefully pull your new object out in the morning and ta da - your own little resin sea urchin!!

I am thinking of framing mine in a 3d box frame and hanging it in my bathroom.

Enjoy and be sure to let me know how your attempts go!

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