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Bottle Cap Memories

'Bottle Cap Memories' by Neil Burley
Ok, I need to make an admission first - my intention was to use recycled beer bottle caps for this project, but I've not had bottled beer for a little while and ran out of time to collect any from the pub... So the project has switched from 'recycled' to 'altered'! Do you find pouring resin too expensive? Or takes too long to set? Me too, so I came up with an alternative: I've used molten WOW! Clear Gloss Ultra High to create the domed glazing in each of the bottle cap frames, and WOW! Earthtones to colour the stamped lettering.

Here's how to make your own:

You will need (for 25 caps):
- Stamps and clear embossing ink
- Tin foil pie dish
- Matt multi medium
- 1" diameter circle punch
- 25 beer bottle caps (I got mine from Wilkinson's)
- Ribba frame (Ikea) - 23cmx23cm aperture
- Hot glue gun/Pinflair glue
- 25 x 6mm glass beads
  1. Select your photographs and punch out the area you wish to display. I used digital images, cropped them and resized them to 3cm square in MS Word before printing out on a laser colour printer and then punching out the circles.
  2. Stamp the lettering onto paper or card and emboss with each of the WOW! Earthtones - their palette helps all the letters work together. Punch out the letters when cool.
  3. To prevent the molten embossing powder turning the discs translucent, coat the back of each disc with matt multi medium, dry and repeat on the front and allow to dry.
  4. Stick the discs to the inside of the beer cap with either the hot glue gun or Pinflair glue and allow to set.
  5. Melt approximately one fifth of the pot of WOW! Clear Gloss UH in the tin foil pie dish using either the heat gun (from beneath), an oven (140C) or Melt-Pot. Pour the molten powder into each of five caps, keeping the liquid molten using the heat gun onto the pouring spout as you pour. Fill each cap until a raised dome occurs and move to the next.
  6. Repeat until all the caps are filled. Take care not to knock or move the caps until they are cool and completely set.
  7. Meanwhile, take the frame and mark the centre, then make a 5x5 grid of marks 1.5 inches apart.
  8. Stick down a 6mm glass bead on each mark using the hot glue gun (this is to raise the bottle caps from the back of the frame).
  9. Once the caps are completely cool, stick each to the top of the beads using the hot glue gun, keeping them level and equally spaced.
  10. Put the frame back together, and you're done :)


  1. Great idea Neil. End result looks very impressive

  2. Hallo Neil,
    was für eine wundervolle Arbeit. Ich bin begeistert. Vielen Dank auch für die Anleitung. Schade das es keine Übersetzung ins Deutsch gibt. Mein Englisch ist nicht gut genug um alles zu verstehen. Liebe Grüße Silvi

    1. Hallo Silvi,
      danke für deine lieben Worte! Ich werde sie an Neil weiterleiten.
      Silvi, wenn du mit der Übersetzung Hilfe brauchst dann melde dich bitte einfach bei mir. Ich kann dir gerne übersetzten was unklar ist bzw. für dich bei unserem Boss Nachfragen ;o)
      Das ist im Internet ein Segen und ein Fluch zugleich. So viele Informationen aber die Sprache ist nicht immer die Richtige und die Übersetzungsmaschinen helfen da meistens auch nicht weiter.
      Liebe Grüße

    2. Hallo Silvi
      Mein Deutsch ist sehr schlecht. Ich benutze Google Translate! Ich hoffe, Bianca Übersetzung geholfen hat.
      Gute Wünsche, Neil.

    3. Hi Silvi
      I have added a Translate widget to the side bar for those who don't do English! It also helps those that only do English to read comments in other languages :)

  3. Loved this when I saw it at the NEC Neil - great idea x


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