Being My Own Poetry Muse

Posted on | July 15, 2015 | No Comments

beautyshotforblogwlogo2It makes me a touch sad to say that I am not truly a fan of poetry. I used to be and even ran a small poetry group that self published during high school. Where did that piece of me go? I’m not sure. But a few months back during a painting retreat I was confronted with the opportunity to spontaneously put words to paper.
Handed a pile of disparate pieces of magazine fragments and clippings I was tasked to write a line, whatever came to mind, for each chunk. Promising myself I would remain in the moment, here is what manifested itself:
Pieces of stone,
Staring back through film,
Blotted, obscure,
Unfocused but clear,
Dropped in colors of black and white,
The architecture of rain,
Bright colors are
Not in my language
Sometimes smeared to muddy brown,
Or paisleys of odd shades
Tied with a ribbon of flowers
Riding atop a dream that has
Broken into pieces.
Haiku version:
Pieces of film bits,
Staring back through plain landscapes,
Unfocused but clear.
These are really very simple to make and the list of ingredients is short:
Products Used
ICE resin
Purchased silicon molds
Vintage 8mm film
Shrink plastic bit and bobs
Golden high flow ink
Mixing cups, stir sticks, and appropriate tools.
Sandpaper In varying grits (i used 220, 400, 500, 600)
Dremel with a small guage drill bit
Jewelry findings
Start by mixing up a larger batch of Ice Resin according to the instructions.
For the embedded film strip pieces, conical shapes and 20 mm ear gauges, I used purchased molds made by someone else so I could make specific shapes. (Please note that you can certainly do the same technique with Art Mechanique silicone putty and make your own shapes) Measure out your film pieces to fit into your molds and place them inside. Pour clear resin into your molds and allow to cure for 24 hours. Remove pieces. Sand the uneven edges with varying grades of sandpaper until smooth. I sprayed my sandpaper with water so the dust from the resin would be contained. (yes it is just that easy!)
Once sanded you have a choice. You can leave your creation matte or coat with a thin resin layer for glossy.
You can also see here that the sanding leaves some dust in any bubbles that you may have sanded open. A layer of resin will make these disappear or give your piece a wash with a toothbrush to remove the dust.
You can also see here that I used a Dremel to drill holes in the above pieces. After drilling add a wire into the hole with drops of resin and allow to cure.I chose to use these as beads rather than ear gauges since they were color experiments.
Above are another couple of pieces I molded then made into earrings. The inclusions are waste pieces of shrink plastic from another project or my “Pieces of stone..”
Which leads me to another line in my poem, “Bright colors are not in my language…”
But they really are!
Color is truly fabulous! And if you want to color your resin it’s an easy process as well.
Mix up a fairly large batch of resin according to instructions. You will need extra cups and mixing sticks for this technique. Once your resin has a rested pour some in your other cups. One for each color you intend to use. Using acrylic paints (I used Golden High Flow because they are strongly pigmented but you could use other brands of acrylic) put a few drops, yes drops, into your resin. Mix. You want to use as little as will make the color you would like. Too much and you risk resin that won’t completely cure.
You can see in the above picture there are some bubbles. Don’t worry about them. Ice resin de-gasses pretty much on it’s own or you can blow through a straw to disburse any surface bubbles once you’ve poured into the mold. So go ahead and pour! After a 24 hour cure you can pull the ring out, do a bit of sanding, and voila! You have a gorgeous new Ice resin piece to wear!
And, just as a side note of interest, I purchased the 8mm film so didn’t know what it featured on it’s frames. After embedding it I still couldn’t make out what the images were. But then I photographed the finished pieces. While editing the pictures look what I found…
 A group of men, yes…is there a carnival ride in the back? Or is one of the men an officer? I don’t know but I was surprised to be able to see any of it! What does it look like to you?
Susan creates and travels with her wearable art company
Charming Trinkets and you can find her blog at:
Susan’s Art Circus Blog!

Exciting News!

Posted on | July 14, 2015 | 6 Comments

Susan Lenart Kazmer and ICE Resin announces new partnership with Ranger Industries

Susan Lenart Kazmer is excited to announce an exclusive distribution and manufacturing partnership with Ranger Industries for her ICE Resin brand of jewelry products.

Kazmer, a master silversmith, author and award-winning jeweler, developed ICE Resin®, a jeweler’s grade, two-part epoxy resin, and introduced at the Bead and Button Show in 2006.  By combining a non-traditional medium (resin) with traditional jewelry techniques she provided artists and designers with a new way to express their creative vision.  It’s unique doming properties and glass like finish has made ICE Resin an important medium that continues to inspire jewelers and mixed media artists of all types.

jen slk france 15Kazmer and her business partner, Mixed-Media Artist and Author Jen Cushman, will join Ranger’s talented roster of licensed artists and will continue as the creative forces behind the product line. As Creative Director of ICE Resin, Susan will continue to do what she does best; create, build, innovate, and inspire with her inventive techniques and designs. As Director of Education, Jen Cushman will create programs that showcase the many unique properties of ICE Resin and how it can be used to create one of a kind Jewelry and Mixed Media art.  Both Susan and Jen will travel extensively sharing their love of jewelry and mixed media art through workshops and demonstrations at trade shows and events around the world. The formulation of ICE Resin is remaining exactly the same and users can expect the same high quality product and formulation that they have come to love.

“Jen and I are thrilled to be partnering with Ranger, a company that shares our commitment to quality and innovation”, says Kazmer. “By working together we will be able to grow the ICE Resin brand and provide our customers with excellent service.”

Alain Avrillon and Justin Russo, owners of Ranger Industries added, “We are very excited to be working with Susan and Jen.  Their dedication to research, product development and teaching fit perfectly into what we do at Ranger.  Having ICE Resin® in our product line adds to our growing range of Mixed Media products and gives us a new way to engage our customers in the Jewelry market.  We hope to provide a seamless transition as we begin to accept and ship orders from our Tinton Falls, NJ warehouse beginning July 14th, 2015.”

ranger ink logoFounded in 1929, Ranger Industries is a manufacturer of paper crafting, art journaling and mixed media supplies, specializing in inks, paints, embossing powders, and innovative tools.   The company is known for working with signature designers and creating technique-based educational programs. Ranger’s extensive line of products includes Tim Holtz Distress, Tim Holtz Alcohol Inks,  Dyan Reavely Dylusions, Dina Wakely Media and many other arts and crafts products including, Perfect Pearl Pigments, Archival Inks, and Stickles Glitter Glue


ICE Resin     A couple of quick Q&A for our customers:

Q: When will Ranger start accepting orders for ICE Resin®?

A: Orders and shipments will be processed through the Ranger warehouse in Tinton Falls, NJ, effective      Tuesday, July 14th.  Wholesale orders can be submitted via or by email to   or by fax at 800.244.2211.

If you do not already have an account with Ranger and would like to open one, please submit an       application online or you can send an email to  Please provide us with copies of your state-issued business license or Sales Tax Certificate in addition to a completed Wholesale Application.

Retail/consumer orders will continue to be processed from the online shopping cart.

Q:  I am a current wholesale customer of ICE Resin.    Do I need to contact Ranger to set up an account?

A: Ranger has already set-up the majority of the ICE Resin® wholesale customer base in our system. Please send an email to with the subject line ICE Resin Account Login Request.   We will email you your Account Name and Password.   If we have not set up your account already, we will provide you with the information you will need to set one up.

Q:  I already have a wholesale account with Ranger.  Do I need a separate account to order the ICE Resin® product line?

A: If you already have a wholesale account with Ranger, you may order ICE Resin® products with your existing Account Name and Password.

Q:  I am a consumer and want to buy ICE Resin® products at retail for my jewelry and mixed media projects.   I can’t find the products on the Ranger retail shopping cart.  What should I do?

A: Retail/consumer orders will continue to be processed from the online shopping cart.

Q: What is ICE Resin®?

A:  ICE Resin® is a crystal clear, two part epoxy resin that’s self-doming and will not fade or yellow over time.   Mixed in equal parts and poured into molds, bezels, or directly onto jewelry and mixed-media components, ICE Resin® provides a glass like finish that adds a unique look to every project.

Q: Now that Ranger will distribute ICE Resin®, will the resin formulation change?

A:  The formulation is remaining exactly the same and users can expect the same high quality product and formulation that they have come to love.

Honoring Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild”

Posted on | July 8, 2015 | No Comments

ICEResin Literature Pendant

“Fear begets fear. Power begets power. I willed myself to beget power. And it wasn’t long before I wasn’t afraid.” –Cheryl Strayed

For this month’s literature theme, there was no question which book would be my focus: Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail, by Cheryl Strayed, a non-fiction work about Strayed’s early life and her hike on the PCT following her mother’s death, through which she overcame many challenges, and not necessarily the ones you would expect. In my many years of overseas postings, I’ve been in numerous book groups with friends from a variety of countries, but no book resonated like Wild. It generated the most personal, emotional book group I’ve ever experienced, in part because — like thousands of others who have been impacted by the book — I lost my non-smoker mother after a brief, painful battle with lung cancer, similar to the author. I could relate to nearly everything Strayed described in her narrative, on a visceral level. The only challenge for this project was choosing a quote to feature, as the book is full of impactful passages. If you haven’t read the book, I highly recommend it.


Supplies for the ICE Resin®-filled pendant.


ICE Resin®
Mixing cups & stir sticks
Art MechaniqueTM Paper Sealer
Clear packing tape
Disposable paintbrush
Art MechaniqueTM Mixed Metal Bezel
Paper components to place in bezel (map, heart, text)
Czech glass seed beads in matte mixed blues
Red white heart glass beads
Bronze clasp & soldered jump rings
Brass 20 gauge round wire
Brass eye pins
Accu-flex stringing material
Brass crimp beads
Brass bird charm

The first thing I did was create the components to include in my Art MechaniqueTM bezel.

Paper Components

When printing paper elements, I like to print multiples of the same image to allow for errors, and to print different sizes and colors of each image, so that I can test which will work best in the finished piece.

The background image in the bezel is a topographical map of west coast, home to the PCT. I digitally manipulated the map for visual interest and to match the color palette I wanted to incorporate.

West Coast Map

The digitally-manipulated map, printed on plain copier paper, and later cropped and cut to size to fit the bezel.

The heart — symbolizing Strayed’s love for her mother as well as the love she found for herself through her trials on the PCT — was created freehand on a computer with drawing software. The text I simply printed with word processing software.

Paper Components Trimmed

The paper components, trimmed. The hiking boots were under consideration, but ultimately not used.

I wanted the colors to stay bright, and the text pieces to really stand out, so I encased all the paper components in packing tape, and for the text pieces only, sealed the edges of the packing tape with a thin coat of Art MechaniqueTM Paper Sealer to ensure no resin would seep into the text papers.

Paper Sealed in Tape

The paper components after sealing with packing tape, and painting the edges of the text pieces with Art Mechanique(TM) Paper Sealer.

Beyond creating the paper parts, the process for this bezel is quite simple. Mix a small amount of ICE Resin® according to the package instructions, and use a stir stick to put a small amount in the bezel, pushing the resin all the way to the edges and corners of the bezel. Place the map component in the bezel, on top of the resin, and press it down, pushing any air bubbles out to the edges. Add a very small amount of resin on top of the map, pushing the resin to the edges of the bezel, to act as an adhesive sealing the layer. Let that layer set up for a few hours.

First layer

Note how little ICE Resin® is on top of the map image.

Mix another small batch of ICE Resin® and add a thicker layer on top of the map, to build dimension for the heart layer.

ICE Resin Layer

Pour ICE Resin® to create the first depth layer on top of the map layer.

Let this thicker layer set up until it’s firm, but still tacky, and place the paper heart component on the tacky resin.

Heart layer

Position the heart layer and press onto the tacky ICE Resin®.

Apply more resin on top of the heart layer, filling nearly to the top of the bezel. Let that layer set up until solid, but still slightly tacky.

Heart Topped with ICE Resin

The heart layer topped with another layer of ICE Resin®.

Using the tackiness of the ICE Resin® to hold the text in place, position the text components. If you make a mistake in placement, simply peel the text piece up and reposition.

Text Layer Positioned

With the text is sealed in packing tape, and the ICE Resin® firm but slightly tacky, it’s easy to peel and reposition the text pieces as needed.

Add another layer of ICE Resin® on top of the text layer, sealing and securing the text, creating a dome effect. Add additional layers of ICE Resin® until you achieve the dome height you desire.

Final ICE Resin Layer

Seal the text layer with additional ICE Resin®.

When the bezel is completely cured, incorporate into a finished piece of jewelry.

Necklace Strung

The finished necklace strung with glass beads and white heart drops.


A bird charm to symbolize flying away, and ultimately soaring.

ICEResin Literature Pendant

I hope this project inspires you to create something celebrating a piece of literature that’s meaningful to you!

For more about my work, go to:
My blog:

Use the firm but tacky stage of ICE Resin to add layers within bezels.

Posted on | July 7, 2015 | 1 Comment

Sands of Time – A Nature Filled Necklace with ICE RESIN® and Natural Elements

Posted on | July 1, 2015 | 2 Comments

“To see a world in a grain of sand

And Heaven in a wildflower,

Hold infinity in the palm of you hand

And eternity in an hour.”


Ice Resin

A picture paints a thousand words, but a few aptly written words can paint love, joy, warmth or longing, distress and sadness. Poetry is like that…touches the soul and fills our minds with pictures of what is beautiful or haunting. I chose a beautiful short four -lined poem to reflect where I am at this season of life (and it resonates with me, especially at this time of the year). If you had asked me my favorite poem when my children were small, it could have been Suess or Silverstein or a poetry book called “If I were in charge of the World” or if you had asked me in my teens, it would have been entirely different. But today, this little verse, fills my mind with thoughts of beauty, to pause in the moment and see passed beyond what is visible.

The task at hand was to create a poetry-inspired jewelry piece. Poetry has been a wonderful friend to me through the years and it is a great inspiration starter as images come to mind as well as the emotions one has while reading. When I am in my Art Studio or at the kitchen table, the same emotions are present when I create from the heart.

The “Sands of Time” Necklace encompasses many techniques from ICE RESIN® Sand glass bottles to wire shell dangles to paper beads. The sand glass bottles are my favorite element of this necklace. While most people fill the bottle with sand, I wanted to see grains of sand. By using ICE RESIN® as the adhesive and pouring the sand over the bottle (shaking off the excess), the effect is ethereal and delicate and individual grains of sand are seen. The sand will not come off over time, and the piece will stay true to it’s original color. The contrast of the sand in the bezel and the sand on the bottle shows the two opposites of wet and dry sand creating color contrast with the same element. I’ve created two versions of the necklace one with a broken shell as the main piece with crocheting the beads, the bottle and dangles in place. And the second one is with the hobnail bezel, metal elements and a brass circle chain to complete the necklace.

Here are a few tips for you as you begin to gather and create this necklace.


  • I did use actual sand from the beach— no worries if you aren’t near the beach.   You can use play sand and add bits of German glass glitter or purchase a bag of shells in the craft department of your local craft store and crush some to put in the play sand.
  • For the sand filled- bezels, I just used ICE RESIN® as the adhesive on the bottom. If you would like a glass like finish, once the sand has been poured and dries 6-8 hours, you could then mix another batch of ICE RESIN® and fill the bezel.
  • The paper beads are created with wildflower paper that has the look of watercolor art. They are sealed with ICE RESIN® and sprinkled with sand on the ICE RESIN® while it is wet.
  • If you do not wish to make paper beads, you may substitute other glass or focal beads to use with the pearls.


“If only there could be an invention that bottled up a memory, like scent and it never faded, and it never got stale. And then, when one wanted it, the bottle could be uncorked and it would be like living the moment all over again.” Daphne Du Maurier

As I write this to you, I am on the beach, listening to the waves crash on the sand and the shore, I am gently reminded to see the beauty in the moment and the possibilities in the tiniest of things… Now with the world and infinity in our hand, let’s get started and make a memory…



Disposable cups, brush and stirrer

Plastic mat or trash bag

Sand *see tip above


Metal bezels 1 large (if this is the center) and 1 small

1 small metal connector – if the metal bezel is chosen for the center

10 glass pearl beads

Wildflower paper

Paper bead roller

Glue stick, your choice

7 head pins

1 eye pin

1 large shell for center

2-4 shells

4 seed or bugle beads

Glass bottles * I used Tim Holtz glass bottles as they are more unique in shape

Wire – thin gauge 22-24 (wire wrapping the bottles)

Round nose pliers, flush cutters

Jump rings

Hemp or cotton yarn, size F crochet hook, 1 button- crochet finish

1 metal chain – for metal bezel as the center


  1. Prepare your work surface with the plastic mat/trash bag. Gather the bezels and the bottle and the paper beads.
  2. Mix ICE RESIN® using equal parts of A & B. Gently stir for 2 minutes and then let rest for 5 minutes.
  3. For the bezels, pour a small amount to cover the base of the bezel and then pour the sand into the bezel, tapping the sand down. Let dry for 6 – 8 hours and then shake off the excess.
  4. For the bottles, using a brush, brush a thin coat of ICE RESIN® onto the main part of the bottle, gently pour the sand over the bottle and then set it standing up. Drip a little ICE RESIN® around and onto the top of the bottle and then using a spoon, pour sand, shaking off excess. Allow to dry 8 hours.
  5. To create paper beads, using a paper bead roller, cut strips of paper (varying the widths and lengths of the strips), roll a tight bead and then using the glue stick, adhere the end of the paper strip to the bead. Slide the bead off and continue to make the desired number needed.
  6. Using a brush, coat the beads with ICE RESIN®. If you would like, sprinkle a little sand onto the wet bead and let dry.


To wire wrap the bottle- once the bottle is dry, cut a long length of thin gauge wire and fold the wire in half. Create a loop by twisting the wires either using round nose pliers or your hands. Then begin to wrap around the bottle, once it is wrapped to your liking, snip the excess wire and tuck your ends to the back of the bottle. Attach to metal bezel with a jump ring.


To create the shell bead dangles and paper beads:


*On a wire head pin, thread one seed/bugle bead, then the shell and then one more seed/bugle bead. Using round nose pliers, create a loop and then with the remaining wire, wrap around just below the loop. Make 2


* On a wire head pin, thread one pearl, then one paper bead (after it has dried), then one pearl. Wire wrap as for the shell dangles. Make 4

*For the center paper bead, using an eye pin, thread one pearl, paper bead and then one pearl, wire wrap as above. Using pliers attach the metal bezel/bottle to the other end.

Putting it all together:

Choice 1 – Crochet the chain and the beads.

*String all shell beads and dangles on to the yarn,

*Using crochet hook, going through the center of the shell from the back, crochet 9 single crochets, turn.

*Chain 1, bring the first bead up to the hook, sc into first stitch. Repeat for the other beads, sc in each stitch. Turn

*Chain 1, sc in each stitch. Fasten off. Weave in ends

For necklace, lengths will vary.

Chain desired number for first half of necklace, when you are at the middle, chain through the shell center and continue to chain the 2nd half of necklace. When you reach equal lengths on both sides, chain a few more stitches to create the loop for the button. Slip stich back into the chain and now sc in each chain until the end. Fasten off. Leave a long tail as you can use this to thread the button on to the necklace. Using adhesive or ICE RESIN®, adhere the flat shell to the center of the shell and onto the crocheted middle.

Choice 2 – Attach chain to metal bezel with jump ring.





Chantal Johnson lives in Rowlett, Texas and is married to Scott. They have three children, 3 dogs and 6 sweet little hens. Her work has been published in Somerset Studio, Somerset Home, Sew Somerset, Apronology, Haute Handbags, Belle Armoire and Green Craft.   She is currently on the ICE Resin® 2015 Design Team. For teaching engagements, you may contact her directly at Visit her blog at or become her friend on Facebook to see her latest inspirations and see the joy in daily living.








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