Mastering Chiffon Fabric Encapsulation in Deep Pour Epoxy Resin


chiffon fabric encapsulation in deep pour epoxy with a purple tint round propped up on a white table next to two bottles of Promise Deep Pour Epoxy

Have you ever wanted to encapsulate fabric in epoxy resin? It's trickier than it might seem, but Nita from Nita's Fluid Woodworks walks you through all the steps of chiffon fabric encapsulation in this tutorial. A few years ago she saw a lot of makers using the fabric encapsulation technique but only on small pieces like coasters and necklace pendants. Being a innovator in the industry, she wanted to create something big that no one had seen before. So... she encapsulated a wedding dress into a wooden cookie round to create a coffee table - and it blew everyone's mind. Thus Nita's chiffon technique was born!

With this inspiration as our backdrop, let's dive into a detailed, step-by-step guide to mastering chiffon fabric encapsulation with a focus on precision, technique, and of course, epoxy resin.

What You'll Need:  

Preparing Your Workspace and Materials

1. Gather Materials

You'll need high-quality chiffon fabric, epoxy resin, mixing tools, a suitable mold, sander, safety gear, and a pigment dye color of your choice. We loved the translucent violet pigment Nita chose because it really shows the depth and mesmerizing effect encapsulating chiffon fabric in resin can create. Getting all your materials organized and layed out in advance is key to a successful project. 

2. Safety First

Work in a well-ventilated area and wear protective gear, including gloves and goggles. Safety is absolutely paramount when working with epoxy resin. Nita uses a dust free Festool Sander to help protect her lungs and keep her workshop and clean as possible. If you are not using a dust free sander be sure to wear a respirator! 

Encapsulating The Chiffon Fabric

3. Fabric Placement Testing

Lay your chiffon fabric over your 12" plastic mold to get an idea of how you want to place the fabric in the mold. If you have a lot of fabric your working with you'll want to cut it down to make it more workable. If you want a fuller more flowy look be sure not to over cut. You can always take away, but you can't add more once it's gone!

Once you have an idea of how much fabric you'll be using, move it to the side so you can prep for your epoxy pour. 

4. Mixing Your Epoxy

Place a plastic sheet on top of your workspace to protect it from any drips or spills. You'll thank yourself later. When working with epoxy always use safety glasses and gloves. If you are working in a space with poor ventilation please use a respirator to protect your lungs. The first pour should be with Promise Deep Pour Epoxy. It's a 2:1 mixing ratio epoxy resin that can pour up to 2" deep per layer. We always recommend measuring by volume so get out those graduated mixing cups!

If you are using a 12" round you'll want a total volume of 900mL for your epoxy. First pour 300mL of Part B into your mixing container, followed by 600mL Part A since it's a 2:1 mixing ratio. Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of your container when thoroughly mixing your resin. 

Full Instructional Guide for mixing Deep Pour Epoxy

5. Adding Your Colorant

To get that cool optical illusion effect, use a translucent pigment dye as your epoxy colorant. Nita used translucent violet pigment dye from Alumilite for this project. A little goes a long way with this colorant, so be sure to add your drops slowly while mixing your resin until you reach your desired hue. If you add too much colorant you won't be able to see the fabric, so go one drop (or half) at a time. 

6. Pouring Your Epoxy

With Deep Pour Epoxy, you have about a 60-90 minute work time depending on your environment so take your time! After prepping your epoxy resin pour the entire mixture into your mold and let it settle. Once it starts to self-level, be sure to use a torch or heat gun to pop any surface bubbles. 

7. Placing Your Fabric

Lay your fabric over the top of your resin pour and let it sink into the mixture. You'll want to scrunch the fabric into the resin using gloved hands so all the fabric is situated inside the mold and covered in resin. This is what gives it the desired depth and dimension. 

Cut off any remaining chiffon fabric from around the edges of the mold and tuck that into the resin as well. Once all the fabric is covered twist it from the middle in one direction about 360 degrees. This will give it an optical illusion effect that blows your mind!

Let it cure for a minimum of 48 hours. 

8. Pouring the Opaque Layer

For this layer use Promise Table Top Epoxy. Instead of a 2:1 mixing ratio like Deep Pour Epoxy, you'll be following a 1:1 mixing ratio rule. Measure equal parts of Part A and Part B according to the size round you're using. We highly recommend using an epoxy calculator to make sure you have enough resin. This is an opaque layer so no colorant is needed. Pour your next layer of resin no more than 1/2" and use a torch or heat gun to pop any surface bubbles. 

Let this cure for a minimum of 24 hours. 

The Final Steps

9. Demold

After 24 hours of curing, you're good to demold. When using a round plastic mold you to want to break the tension seal of the sides by applying some manual pressure. After getting it loosened up from the sides you may need to use a mallet to fully remove your piece from the mold. 

Pro Tip: Dropping it on the floor will also do the trick at times, but if you're resin is not fully cured you'll have a much harder time demolding your piece. Be patient and wait for that full 24 hour cure.

10. Scrape Your Edges

This is an optional step, but for a cleaner (and safer) overall project, you'll want to remove those sharp edges by taking a scraper around the sides to create a smooth surface. 

11. Sanding & Top Coating

If you want a glossy look instead of matte, sand the top and sides of your project with 220 grit. Please note, if you are not using a dust free sander you always want to wear a respirator for safety. When sanding epoxy resin be sure to keep your pressure and movement consistent. 

After sanding, wipe your project surface using a spritz of isopropyl alcohol. From here you'll want to measure out 3oz/square foot of Table Top Epoxy for your top coat. Adding a top coat truly makes the chiffon fabric encapsulation pop!

Follow the full instructional guide for Table Top Epoxy when measuring, mixing, and pouring. 

Let it cure for a minimum of 24 hours. 

12. Sanding The Drips

To get a nice and smooth back, sand off any drips that accumulated during the curing process using 80 grit. After you're done sanding just spritz a little bit of isopropyl alcohol, wipe, and viola! You're chiffon fabric encapsulation is finished!

Pro Tip: If you want even more shine (and a really good smell) fgo ahead and polish your piece using Promise Polish & Cleaner. Totally optional, but it does give it that little extra oomph! 

Watch The Video 👇

By following these detailed steps, you can master the art of working with chiffon fabric, creating pieces that not only showcase your technical skills but this mind blowing optical illusion that is chiffon fabric encapsulation. Remember, each project is an opportunity to push the limits of your craft, learn from the process, and emerge with a deeper understanding of epoxy resin. But most's about having fun!

Start Creating Your Own With The Bundle


Shop Nita's Chiffon Bundle.


Want To Learn More About Nita?

Go check out her website and social media pages! She's so fun to talk too. 

Leave a comment