Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Bottle Cap Fridge Magnets Make Great Small Gifts

Recently, a very dear friend became a grandmother for the first time. She's so excited to have a grandson to dote over. 

When bubs arrived, the new parents were showered with gifts. But I thought it would be nice to give the new grandma a small gift too.

So I whipped up a pair of fridge magnets that she can use to proudly display some of her favourite photos of bubs where she'll see them all the time.
personalised fridge magnets inspiration sheet

If you're expecting a new arrival in your household, this is a project that is great to get your older children involved in too.
  • It can help an older sibling adjust to having a new baby brother or sister in the house. 
  • Or they can make a set for their grandparents who will love such a thoughtful, handmade gift.
  • With close supervision, even young children can help make these!

For this project, I've used 
Magic-Glos is non-toxic and has no odour. If you use Magic-Glos, you can have children helping you.

But I also wanted to do this project with other UV resins, so I tried Alumi-UV as well as the inexpensive Chinese UV resins. They were successful too. You can see me using these two resins in the last 2 photos at the bottom of the post. These types of resin have an unpleasant smell, so make sure you work with good ventilation or wear a respirator.

How to Make UV Resin Magnets

Start by removing the liner from the inside of the bottle caps so that you have a flat bottom to work with - or you can be forgetful, like me, and not do that! It just means that you won't have as much depth to work with and you'll need to cover the liner with a layer of resin to create a flat surface for the next step.

Curing the Resin

Place the piece under a UV lamp to cure.

For Magic-Glos, you need a 9W lamp for about 10 minutes
If you're using Chinese UV resin, use a 36W lamp (my favourite lamp!)
And for Alumi-UV, you need a 40W lamp for 20-30 minutes.

If you don't have access to a lamp, place your bottle cap in the sun for 10 minutes to cure it or until it is no longer tacky.
Spreading the resin and 100s and 1000s over the bottom of the bottle cap

Once it's cured, add more resin, the alphabet beads and lots and lots of 100s and 1000s.
Positioning the alphabet letters in the bottle cap

Because I forgot to remove the liner, the top of the letters are sitting above the resin. That's OK if you don't mind it being a bit bumpy but you do need to make sure that all of the 100s and 1000s are covered so that moisture doesn't get in and dissolve them - especially if you live in a humid climate like me.
Alphabet beads protruding above resin surface

To get a smooth, domed top (who doesn't want glossy and smooth!), add another layer of resin to cover the beads and 100s and 1000s and then cure it.

How to Attach the Magnet

To turn the bottle cap into a magnet, use a strong adhesive like 5- minute epoxy

Mix it up according to the directions (see how to do it properly in this post: how to mix 5-minute epoxy).

Apply it to the non-magnetised side of the magnet. Position it on the back of the bottle cap and you're done. 

Isn't this a fun and easy project?!!

Fixing Bubbles

But even when a project is as easy as this one, things don't always go to plan. I ended up with a huge bubble on the second one which made its way to the top whilst the resin was curing. By the time I discovered it, it was too late to pop it.
Bubble caught in the resin

But all is not lost. I drilled the bubble open into a big hole. Try using a tool like this one.

I know it looks bad, but sometimes, things have to get worse before they get better!
Powdered resin shavings from drilling out the bubble

And then I filled it with another layer of resin. 

All fixed! You can't even see where the bubble was! Here's the finished pair of fridge magnets.
Resin and 100s and 1000s bottle caps personalised with sentiments

Why not make up a whole set?  Here are some other ideas to get you started:
  • Baby Girl/Baby Boy (good to use if bub's name is too long to fit)
  • For longer names, spell the baby's name out by putting each letter in a separate bottle cap. Use bigger letters for more impact
  • Baby's birth date
  • Miracle
  • Angel
  • Precious
  • Blessing 
  • Newborn 
  • Cutie Pie
  • Bundle of Joy (do one word on each bottle cap!)
  • The name grandma will be known by 
Meanwhile, I'm pleased to report that the new grandma is delighted with her little gift and can't wait to display some photos of her darling new grandson.

Alumi-UV Resin

Chinese UV Resin

Pin this Project!
100s and 1000s UV resin fridge magnets project sheet

Happy Resining!

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