• logden38

Acrylic Key Chains (no resin required!!)

Updated: Feb 2

Let's keep this short and sweet - just like the project! I am in love with these acrylic key chains, and I love that I've found a way to give them that "watercolour" look without any of the expense, hassle, time, or chemicals of resin.

[While you're here, check out this Facebook group where online deals and discounts on crafting supplies are posted daily]

Here's what you need:

1. Acrylic keychain rounds

The best price I've found for these is on amazon (get them here: https://amzn.to/3IICVM6)

2. Small plastic paint or bead pots

These ones are perfect: https://amzn.to/3Hgg9KZ. Plus it makes it easy to store your mixtures if you plan to do multiple!

Acrylic paint

These are my favourite: https://amzn.to/3gcoGmp. They are medium-bodied, so they still hold a lot of pigment and can be directed well, but they aren't too heavy to be watered down - and also not as expensive as artist quality acrylics


Any water will do!

Macrame Cord

I like to use at least 5mm cord for these, but it's honestly personal preference. (You can grab a good quality 5mm spool here: https://amzn.to/3s87fJ9)

Embroidery thread

If you don't have some of this kicking around, pick up one of these kits: https://amzn.to/3ocT1pi. It's great if you're looking to build up a stock of different colours - especially if you're hoping to sell some of these!


don't forget the scissors!

Vinyl (or paint)

for the letters!

Mod Podge

To seal! I use glossy because I find it preserves the "resin" look, but matte is also beautiful! Grab some here: https://amzn.to/3uesv2B

Here's how you do it:

First, make up your paint and water mixture! There is no exact science to this. The amount of water you need depends on the "body" or thickness of your paint. For the Folk Art paints, I usually cover the bottom of the pot with paint, and then add in about 5 drops of water. You want enough that frothy bubbles form at the top when you mix it

Then, peel the protective layer off your acrylic round. Sometimes these can be tricky, but just pick gently around the edge of the round until it starts to lift. It's important that you only peel one side of the film off. Leave the film on the other side of the round intact so you don't get paint on it!

Start pouring your paints however you like. I like to start with a white base, because it gives you a little bit of opacity when you start pouring your other colours. If your paint runs right off the round immediately, you might have a bit too much water in your mixture. No worries at all - just dab it with some paper towel and add a few more drops of paint to your mix.

Once you've poured to your heart's content, it will need some time to dry. If you make them in the day time, just set them on the window sill and let the sun do the drying!

In the meantime, you can create your design for the front side! I like the simple look of the names with the monogram, but you might opt for something a little more ~fancy~. As a side note, this is an awesome project to use up some of that scrap vinyl you've been saving - am I right?!

I have also been itching to use more of this holographic vinyl from TeckWrap. I absolutely LOVE it. It cuts so clean and seems pretty rugged. Grab some here: https://amzn.to/3gcEjKG

One of the best things about these clear cutting mats is that I can actually set my blank behind it and see exactly what size to cut my vinyl to. (I talked about these mats in another post, but seriously - these are the best, ever, and only like a 1/3 of the price of the Cricut brand!! Grab some here: https://amzn.to/3ISz7Yy)

Once the vinyl is weeded, it's time to transfer it. Make sure your round is nice and dry and then peel the protective film off the front side. This is a really fun part, because you get to finally see what your design will actually look like!

When I transfer vinyl that's meant to be layered like this, I usually try to get it all in one go because it preserves the transfer tape for longer (didn't you know you can reuse your transfer tape?! You must not have read my frequently updated beginniners tips and tricks for the Cricut post :o).

Once the vinyl is centered and pressed down, it's time to seal!! I just use a foam brush and a little bit of glossy mod podge. The glossy formula keeps some of the shine, so it doesn't just look like you sealed it with school glue (I have made that mistake).

Now it's time to make the macrame tassle. These are so fun because you can totally get creative with them. Today, I chose to do one of the multi-coloured ones to match the coffee and cream theme my round ended up having.

You can start by cutting a length of your 5mm cord that's about 6-8 inches long. Then, find the centre of it and fold it in half.

Once you've done that, pick a staring point to begin wrapping. I like to leave about 2 inches (at least) uncovered on the ends.

When you pick your point, tie a few knots with the embroidery thread around the macrame cord to secure it. Don't worry about the tail for now - you can actually pull it up against the portion of the cord you're going to wrap and wrap it up so no one sees it!

Now you can start wrapping! When you get to the end of that colour, tie as many knots with that colour as you can around the cord. I usually do about 3 or 4. Don't cut the tail! Some people will use an embroidery needle to sew it back through the wraps, but I hate threading needles, so I just wrap the next colour over the tail.

Repeat this as many times as you want, but be mindful of your starting point on the other end. It's important that your "end point" somewhat lines up with your "start point".

Once you reach the end, keep ignoring the tails. It might look messy, but I promise it will get better.

Keep your (now wrapped) cord folded in half - you'll notice it's pretty stiff now and feels like it has a wire in it. Pull it through your keychain loop and pull the keychain up to the centre of the cord.

Pick how big you want the "loop" at the top to be. I like mine to be about 2.5 inches long.

Take your final colour of embroidery thread and wrap it around the two ends of the cord, just under where you want your loop to start. Wrap it as tight as you can and tie a few knots. Then, wrap the cord down about an inch, or until you can't see the starting point of the other coloured thread.

Once that's done and you've tied a few good knots in it, you can start trimming the tails that are left. This is also where I like to fluff out my macrame cord - but that's just personal preference.

Then, attach your painted and dried round to the keychain and voila! You're done! Minus drying time, this project takes about half an hour to do, and the end result is SO CUTE. They're almost addictive.

(As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from any purchases you make through the links above - this is at no cost to you!)


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