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How To Make Polyresin Coated Real Flowers?
Q. I am trying to poly coat live flowers for making necklace pendants. I don't know where to begin. Can you please advise me on how to create this product?Shawn B [last name deleted for privacy by Editor]
Jewelry making hobbyist - Waco, Texas
A. I would suggest using a 2 part castable acrylic [Sourcing: Casting Resin [linked by editor to product info at Amazon] ] Dip the flowers in this and allow to dry. Should give you a crystal clear finish and will be workable. If you need to thin it down add paint thinner (I think that's what I used last time make a small batch first to be sure).Marc Banks
- Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Q. I am also looking to learn how to do this.. I am in need of more detailed instructions. What products are used? Do you use fresh flower or dried flowers? Please help us! I have looked all over the net and I can't find anything!
Thanks in advance!
- Chicago, Illinois
Q. I am from Hungary and I found your conversation about the poly resin casting of real flowers. I am very much interested in making it myself therefore I would be more than interested to learn about the details of the process. I am looking forward to your answers.Judit Kovacs
- Budapest, Hungary
Q. I found the site regarding polycoating real flowers. I too, like the other posters have not been able to find instructions on how to do this. I would love any help on this. I am trying to prepare real flowers with polyresin for pendants. Thanks again for any helpPatti Meadows
Jewelry hobbyist - Chattanooga, Tennessee
A. A local store owner and I have been discussing the possibilities of coating flowers. So far, here's what we have come up with: 1-using a shellac on the flower heads and then letting it dry before applying the resin. 2-Freezing the flowers in a desired position before resin coating. I'm not sure whether this would be effective or not.Melissa Glazier
- Quinwood, West Virginia
Q. I have not checked this site in quite a while. Has anyone discovered how to preserve the flowers in resin? There is an example of this in the Fire Mountain Gem Catalog, or online at www.firemountaingems.com The flowers are beautiful, they are still pliable also. You can touch the petals and they move. I have not been able to find ANYTHING regarding the process. Any suggestions?
Thanks,Patti Meadows (returning)
- Chattanooga, Tennessee
Q. I also am in love with the idea of resin coating flowers to preserve them! I have also seen examples at www.etsy.com.
Does anyone know how to do this? "Coat them with resin" isn't enough info - I really need to know what type/brand of resin, I've never used resin before so I don't even know where to start. Go to my local hardware store? Help!
Please give me instructions if you know how to do this!
- Columbus, Ohio
Q. I have also tried to find out how to do the poly resin coated flowers
I recently attended a craft fair and a couple of young ladies had a beading booth that had some examples of flowers done with this type of material. I later emailed them and tried to find out but have not received a response from them.
- Goose Creek, South Carolina
April 30, 2008
A. To do this first dry your flowers flat they need to have all of the moisture out of them drying them in a flower press or between book pages would work then after they are dry you need to get some Elmers school glue or white glue mix half glue and half water apply a coat or two to the flowers and let dry they need to be completely coated so the resin won't soak into the flowers after they are completely coated and dry (drying can take a couple of days and it will dry clear) get your mold mix up a bit of resin pour it in the mold until it is about half full then let stand until it is about jello consistency then put your flower on the semi cured resin face down (the side of the flower you want to see) and finish filling the mold with resin and let it stand until cured follow the instructions on the resin for cure time and mixing instructionsravyn shadow
- blackfoot, Idaho
July 1, 2008
Q. Some of these suggestions are helpful, but they do not address the procedure I and some of the others are describing. The flower I saw were NOT pressed, they were in natural 3D shape. They were small roses and were made into a rosary. They were pliable to the touch. I have not had any success finding the details on how to do it. Such a well kept secret. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Patti.Patti Meadows(returning)
- Chattanooga, Tennessee
! Hi, Patti. I don't see what you are talking about at firemountainngems and I am having trouble following you. But how do you know these are real flowers rather than polymer imitations?
For example there are rosary beads on Ebay that seem to look like what you are describing, but they are not real flowers, they're just plastic.
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey
July 22, 2008
Q. Hi I have been interested on the comments on dried with resin to make pendants. I bought one of these on holiday in Connemara but mine does not appear to have been done in a mould. It is a flower and at first I thought it was laminated in heavy laminate, but I have since discovered it is covered in resin and it is in the shape of the flower, it is about 1/8 inch thick and solid but extremely light. Any ideas how it is doneHelen Anketell
crafter - Belfast. N.Ireland
July 30, 2008
Q. I to am trying to get information on using resin flowers in jewelryDee Tipper
- Auckland, New Zealand
August 10, 2008
Q. Hey, Ted, I looked back on the posts and saw your response. I know it has been a while, but wanted to give a little more details on what I am trying to get instructions on. If you go to www.firemountaingems.com and in the search box enter the item #H20-7918JW It will give you a picture of the natural flower coated with polyresin. I still have found NOTHING on the subject.
Also, does anyone know anything about electroforming flowers? I live in TN and wanted to possibly take a beginners class on this. Thanks so much for your info.Patti Meadows(returning)
- Chattanooga, Tennessee
Electroplating and Electroforming for Artists and Craftsmen
A. Hi, Patti. I would bet that this is done with great patience: a very thin highly diluted very very fine spray of resin the first time, followed by a slightly heavier, slightly less diluted, spray the second time. Repeated about 5 times with time to dry in between.
There are electroplating courses and even specialty electroforming classes but, having taught them for two of the organizations serving the industry, they are industrially oriented and I doubt that a hobbyist/artist would get much from them. There might possibly be an electroforming course conducted by artists for artists, but I'm not aware of it, sorry.
I'd start with this book, from your library if possible, or bought used and cheap =>
[Disclosure: finishing.com may earn a commission if you buy by following this link]
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey
August 13, 2008
Thanks for your response Ted, I will try to research it that way.Patti Meadows(returning)
- Chattanooga, Tennessee
August 17, 2008
Q. I have just seen 3d pendant jewelry made from real flowers which are then coated in resin. I took the artist's card and the web site is www.hanamiusa.com The colors of the flowers were brilliant and he told me that it take several coats of resin to create. I too would like to know if anyone has figured out the process for preserving the flowers.
- bonita springs, Florida
December 20, 2008
I am interested in doing this flower pendant. I bought one from Hanami in New York, those are so cute.
I really want to do something fun.....anyone to help...
smiles and great appreciation.
- Nashua, New Hampshire
January 23, 2009
Q. I have just found this website and the conversation about resin flowers. I saw Ted's response about lightly spaying flowers (such as a rose) with resin and then repeating. I went to my local craft store yesterday and nobody is familiar with a sprayable resin. I also only could find a resin which has to be mixed, but there was no information about how to thin it for the first coat. Anyone have any ideas? I've spent hours on the internet trying to find information on this and am getting absolutely nowhere! HELP!Barbara Southwell
- Memphis, Tennessee
January 24, 2009
Q. Hi everyone. I am still trying to find a "paint" I used years ago to coat real flowers. It was water soluble and worked so well, however the flowers were very brittle. I am going to try School Glue (Elmers) as one of your writers suggested and will let you know how it works.Carol Brennan
- Fort Pierce, Florida
March 15, 2009
A. I too have seen these beautiful objects and they are indeed not pressed for drying. There are products that flowers can be dried in without pressing between drying sheets. Use one of these products and then apply the casting resin. I have never tried this, but I am going to. My daughter and I loved the look of the flowers and the ones sold at Fire Mountain Gems are just too expensive for me. I looked up the casting resin listed above and the description does list flowers, so I suppose in a few weeks I'll have a new project to try. Best of luck to us all. :^)Lynda Ellis
- Benson, Arizona
April 24, 2009
A. From what I read on the internet, you need to have poly resin casting compound. This can be found at most art stores. BUT polyresin is used on dried flower, but there are two ways to fix this. One is to thin the poly resin with paint thinner, the second option is to apply shellac or polyurethane (the polyurethane might be easier to find though)then apply the polyresin when its dry.
The one with paint thinner needs to be applied in thin layers but as each layer goes on lessen the paint thinner. Remember to let the flower dry each layer.
Be sure to not to dump the flower into the polyresin whole, it would cause the flower to collapse due to the heavy polyresin and it will not look good.
* This is just based on what I read on the internet. please don't use a flower that's very important to you and destroy it. Try using a different flower and see how that one goes. if you don't like how it looks at the end, try another way. *
- Fairfax, Virginia
April 30, 2009
A. Hi everyone,
I found a kit to make resin coated flower.
This is what I learned from their web page.
First, you have to dry your flower using silica gel. Just put your flower in tupperware with silica gel for several days.
Then, mix your resin well (usually come with 2 separate solutions). Pour the solution on it. Let it dry for 20 min. or more (sometimes half day), Repeat this 5 or 6 times.
You can spray high gloss acrylic after resin coated.
Web site said do not try it on rainy days for high humidity. Some flowers are not suited for resin coating.
Sorry, I never tried this, and can not guarantee if it would work. Hope it will :)
- Murfreesboro, Tennessee
May 6, 2009
A. Right then guys, I know how to preserve flowers as I gold plate roses, it isn't easy though and it takes some time.
Firstly I use a saturation fluid, you can easily make your own using just baking soda [linked by editor to product info at Amazon].
SOAK the flower in saturation fluid , apply resin, airbrush using conductive paint, either graphite or silver ink.
Then you will need to nickel plate it first to build up the sheen, then you can plate it with gold or whatever you choose.(after activation of course).
Hope this helps you.
- Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
May 26, 2009
A. Okay, so recently my grandmother passed away and I had been wondering how to dry her funeral flowers. I looked up a bunch of websites and I even went to a lady that dried them and got a quote. This is the process I have gotten so far.
1)Put your flowers in a tupperware or airtight container.
2)Put silica gel in the container and keep in there for several days, but keep checking so they don't over dry and become brittle. (this happens because what the silica gel is doing is taking the moisture from the flowers.
3)After you have the dried flowers take out the silica gel. Do this somewhere that you won't make too much of a mess.
4)Now there are two ways you can finish off your flowers. Either you spray a couple coats of floral sealant. Or you can do this and then dip in a resin. The resin will make them shiny and hard.
5)You can now put them in an arrangement and voila! An everlasting time piece.
- Panorama, British Columbia, Canada
July 22, 2009
A. So, this is what I have found out so far from research and experience....
Use a silica product to dry the flowers first. I know this may have you thinking that the flowers will look 'dried-up' but the silica takes the moisture out while maintaining the natural look and shape of the flower.
I would then use another product, such as spray shellac, or Elmers glue to begin to preserve the flower, and start to strengthen it.
Then I would attempt to apply several thin coats of the poly-resin, allowing each layer to dry first.
A lot of the flowers you see for sale are done by the electroforming method, but from what I understand this method can be a little involved for the usual hobbyist.
Hope this helps some....
- Pamplin, Virginia
July 31, 2009
A. Hello there,
Just as a follow up...
I have made the resin-coated flowers in the past. I dry the flowers in a tupperware container filled with silica gel. I upend the flowers on shot glasses which sit in the silica gel to encourage even drying and coloration and so no parts are touching the gel.
Once they are dry (not brittle, but sufficiently dry) I coat them with a floral sealant for dried flowers, which you can find here...
I let that dry and then mix up my resin which you can find at any Hobby Lobby or other hobby store. I paint on one very thin layer at a time with a paint brush and let them dry between layers. Keep adding layers until the flower is completely covered and the finish to your desired thickness.
Then attach hardware and go!
I hope this helps.
- Overland Park, Kansas
January 30, 2010
Hi, I also wanted to know how to do this, and a while back probably about six months ago I read a tutorial online but can no longer find it. I do, however, remember some things it said:
Dry the flowers (they make a sand type of stuff that will preserve the color of the flower and it will stay in the 3d shape, you like bury the flower in it, my mother in law tried it and it works, I don't remember the name of the product) it will take several days - weeks.
Then use a two part resin, such as polycast, I have worked with polycast before and its super simple, you can find it in hobby lobby or Michaels. and dip the flower face down in it, before hand, you need to secure the stem with a string or something so that you can tie it up to dry, so the extra resin will drip off. you'll want to use a paint brush to brush off the drips so they don't dry onto the flower petals. the resin takes several days to dry completely.
That is all I remember, but I imagine with some practice it will be pretty simple. once I try it, I will post back on here a tutorial.
- picayune, Mississippi
A. I have not tried this, but the following site gives more detailed information:
- Southampton County Virginia
November 12, 2010
A. I want to do this with leaves and make pins. This stuff sounds good.
- mystic, Connecticut, usa
January 13, 2011
A. Lots of questions and confusion here re:hard-coating flowers! I have been experimenting a lot...some flowers you can just spray coat with acrylic varnish spray (there is a Triple-Thick one I found at Dick Blick), but some flowers will immediately curl up and wilt if you do that. Most flowers can be dried in silica gel for a week, then spray coated with varnish (they will be frail and more brittle, so be very careful!) There is a product I found at Hobby Lobby called "Victoria's Floral Craft Glazing Dip". It is already mixed, so you just pour it into a dish wide enough to accommodate the flower head, dip and swirl off the excess drips, and let dry - use a small brush to clean away the drips as it dries. I found the flowers re-hydrate a bit, and when dry are still a bit flexible/plastic-y. Perhaps then a coat of spray varnish would stiffen them. Some flowers can be dipped in this fresh, others will wilt and must first be dried.
You can also melt paraffin wax with a small touch of glycerin and dip the flower head in the melted wax, swirl, cool in refrigerator, then spray with varnish coat. Some flowers can be dipped fresh, others will immediately wilt! I have had some silica-dried orchids wilt and stick together (have to use a toothpick quickly to separate the petals!) while others (fresh or dried) turned out very nicely! It has been an on-going experiment!
Electroforming: we spent $1400 on a whole kit set-up. First, the flowers have to be "stiffened" somehow as above. Then I have found it best to use a diluted solution of the metal "paint" in an airbrush and lightly spray-coat my objects, layering and allowing to dry between coats (1-3 coats). The metal "paint" I use is equal parts paint thinner, clear liquid varnish, and micro-powdered copper. (All this is available when you buy the kit or from a supplier of electroforming supplies). You then have to attach (superglue, then cover with the metal "paint") a metal wire to the flower, submerge it in the copper electroform solution and hook it up to the voltmeter...can take anywhere from 2-8 hrs to electroform.
In summary,there are some flowers that will wilt and others that won't with each of these methods. I am still searching for the "perfect" clear glaze that dries the flowers to a HARD durable (wearable) finish.
Best of luck to you all! :)
- Denver Colorado USA
January 28, 2011
Q. For the silica gel, do we leave it in the little baggies they come in, or cut the bags and let the balls mingle with the flowers? How long should we keep the flowers in the tupperware?Jessica Shen
- Edison, New Jersey, USA
August 18, 2011
Q. This is in follow-up to one of Patti's initial questions, regarding the flexibility of the flower: allowing the petals to move when touched.
I am a beginner at this, I am looking for using this detail as accessories on clothing/shoes. I would love to find a method of coating fresh flowers (so the colour preserves), as well as dried flowers, allowing them to be flexible to the touch. This is for two reasons - 1. to allow them to be stitched to fabric securely; and, 2. to allow them to be a little different in comparison to all the other 'hard', floral corsages you see.
I've read the comments above, and cannot see anything further to Patti's initial comment on flexibility.
Any help would be really appreciated!
- london, England
January 2, 2012
A. Only way I know to preserve flowers with them staying pliable would be with glycerin. There are many guides online but basically you put the flower in a vase containing glycerin rater than water until all the water in the flower is replaced by glycerin. With this method the flower will change color but there are ways to color it during and/or after. However I don't think they will last very long if used on clothing like you describe.
I came here looking for a way to preserve a "living" rose inside a glass heart filled with a liquid like a snow globe. I also need it to remain pliable so it will give the impression of being alive.
February 2, 2012
A. This may not help at all, I don't even know how I got to this chat, but it caught my interest and I started looking around. I just typed 'resin jewelry' into the Google search bar and all I could find was how to make this. All kinds of instrucs. and kits for doing the flowers. Hope this helps. Now you guys have me looking into yet another project!Diane Kiger
- Asheboro, North Carolina, USA
January 29, 2013
A. Hey I found this really helpful blog that might help you. Happy reading!
- Miami, Florida, US
June 5, 2013
Q. I'm looking for a REAL FLOWER AEROSOL SPRAY to spray real flowers at their fullest bloom. I had some of this spray (which I forgot the name of naturally) I've looked on the internet A LOT. (DAYS AND MONTHS) Cannot find it anywhere.
Does someone know the name of this product or where I can order it from the internet. I think it might by acrylic or varnish or both spray? Not sure.
I hope someone can help me with this question.
- Bloomington, Illinois
July 3, 2013
A. Good morning! I've been reading over the questions and did some browsing. This link looks like it might answer most everyone's questions, and give a really good start on things for us hobbyists.
It even breaks down specs for different types of flowers and seed pods.
- Olympia, Washington, USA
Ed. note: Bronwyn kindly copied the whole article, but that isn't "fair use", so we had to delete it. Follow the link please.
October 29, 2013
Q. Hi friends,
I am from India; recently known about resin jewellery, especially with real flowers. Was so excited to try this but not that successful with real flowers.
This is of great help for me to try them again by drying the flowers using silica gel. Actually could someone help me know where I get silica gel?
I am using epoxy clear resin which I got from Qatar after so much research.
Anyway, am going to try this. Please do reply to me soon, and thank you so much guys for this informations which I was searching for long, and am posting my unsuccessful trials.
Thanks in advance,
- Nilambur, Kerala, India
November 7, 2013
Want to know how the silica gel be used and in how much quantity.
Thanks in advance.
- Nilambur, Kerala, India
Crystal Kitty Litter
A. Many people asked where you can get silica gel. You can get it online at e-bay and many stores. However, if you are like me and do not have time to order the rather expensive gel (death in the family, preserving flowers), then know that you can use the crystal kitty litter from Walmart or any pet store. Other than that, enjoying reading the comments and can't wait till my flowers are done drying with the kitty litter. Please note that it is crystal kitty litter, NOT clay or sawdust based.Jennifer Mardin
- Jefferson, New Hampshire
June 26, 2014
A. Hi everyone,
I believe I have a solution to your answer. I have preserved flowers before and it doesn't require drying them out (so it doesn't lose its natural colour)and the finished products looks exactly like it was in life form!
It's a resin called "casting and embedding resin" mixed with a product called "catalyst". You need to mix the two of them together as the catalyst sets the resin. They are quite toxic products so you need to wear gloves and not inhale the fumes. I buy them from my local hardware store.
Dip the flower in the resin and let it set on non stick baking paper, which is available from the grocery store. Apply as many coats to get desired thickness. Sometimes once is enough...and that's your real life flower set in resin :)
I also use it to preserve all types of things like food products such as lollies or candy, cakes...anything you want. I use them to make jewellery :)
Hope this was helpful
- Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
A. I have been trying this out on orchids. Try using a couple of coats of Mod Podge, dry between coats, then use a brush to paint the flowers. Not sure you could use roses though as too many petals. Seemed to work, though not sure of how long it will last for. Just ensure you pick the clear resin, though mine looks good in the ivory resin.Sharon Paterson
- Hampshire England
March 28, 2015
Q. I have found that putting a fresh flower straight into the epoxy works, but the flower turns green. Anyone else tried this before?avi nicole
- columbus ohio usa
April 3, 2015
Q. I have tried a sanding resin that sets with either UV rays (the sun) or you can use a catalyst, but it destroys the color of the flower. I have tried Elmer's white glue to preserve the flower first, (mixed at a 4/1 ratio), then a spray coating of lacquer, either a brushed on or sprayed on coat, and I still ended up with the resin ruining the flower in the end.
I am trying to preserve fresh flowers before electroplating. I know it can be done, as I have seen it done. I have been able to plate once the resin has set, but the resin won't set on the flowers. I am sure this is in the flower preservation process.
I have used a foliage sealer, and sprayed lacquer on the flowers, but I am thinking that the lacquer will break down under the resin, and once again ruin the flower.
Any suggestions would be appreciated.
- Kihei, Hawaii, USA
April 11, 2015
A. Hi all,
Just used silica gel that I purchased from amazon to dry out orchids. This is the first time I've done this so not sure if it worked or not :)! But I found a great youtube tutorial on how to dry flowers prior to dipping or painting, if you will, with resin. Some things they talk about of note are: make sure you completely cover your flowers with the gel and get it between the pedals too. That can be tricky so take your time so no petals are separated from the stem or other petals. Cover your container well, it will help a lot! One last thing; if you live in a "high humidity" area like I do with constant fog and or rain, take that in to account. I'm adding 2 extra days to the drying process.
K, hope that helps. And remember you can dry out the silica gel in the oven - about an hour at 200 ° or until the color is gone and reuse it.
- San Francisco California USA
June 8, 2015
A. After reading through all the threads on this post, I'll add my bit. Basically I've been trying to preserve flowers in their 'just picked' state and use them in resin jewellery.
After numerous attempts at drying flowers out in silica gel (snowdrops, forget me nots and lily of the valley) all have shriveled up and lost their beauty, so after reading about spray-on resin I thought I'd try my unused and forgotten gel nails kit. Just trialing here so I've attempted to set a lily in, yes, you guessed it, plain old nail gel. Painted a few coats on and sat it under the UV light to set, here are the photo results.
I'll repost to see if the flower deteriorates, but for my own use this seems to be what I need. It's a little pliable and hasn't shriveled at all -- not sure how this would be for larger blooms folksemma horne
- turriff, aberdeen, scotland
June 16, 2015
Have come across this page having spent AGES researching how to preserve 3d flowers in resin. Interested in Emma's post on using nail gel and would like to know how it turns out, please keep us posted! Thanks too for the photos Emma, really helpful.Lizz Baxter
- Devon, England
June 16, 2015
A. Hi Lizz, after a day or so the colour left the petals completely, and after a week the flower deflated and yellowed, that was it just sitting on the windowsill, I'd be interested to see how it looks with white gel coating just the inside , maybe the outside too, I just coated it in gel to stop any moisture leaking into the jewellery resin, I've yet to try it as I don't have the right stuff, ill try the white next time, I'd like to think that if the flower was coated in the uv gel then set in resin soon after it would stop the decomposition altogether.Emma hotne [returning]
- Turriff, uk
July 9, 2015
A. Try looking up Resin. I have had good luck with it.Ann Marie Zinowich
- Oxford, Connecticut
July 30, 2015
Hi Folks - This is an interesting thread that I can add some information to. I own a business called Aurora Preserved Flowers in the central Michigan area.
We dry and embed flowers in polyester resin, casting them in paperweights and wall placques. Most of our business is from customers bringing in flowers from funerals and weddings. I have found that roses dried in silica sand tend to take on a saturated look when encased in polyester resin. I have tried a floral sealer , which helps, but have had better success with satin polyurethane spray finish. The only problem is that it is time consuming and somewhat hazardous to spray the volume of flowers we are dealing with. So now I am researching dipping the roses in poly or lacquer instead of spraying them. My approach would be to simply dip the top 2/3rds of the rose in poly and then place it upright in a egg carton to dry.I am going to try both, since I know poly will work. The added benefit of lacquer is it is thin and will dry to a more "natural" finish. Thanks for the useful information on this site -Mike.
A.P.F. LLC - Sanford, Michigan
November 17, 2015
This string served as a really good way to help me get going so I figured I would post my results. :)
I too tried drying the flowers myself in various ways and just ended up being frustrated with the results (and the money I spent). I was attempting to make a crown of real orchids for an event my daughter was participating in... I found several websites that offered reasonably priced freeze dried orchids in lovely colors so I bought a few boxes. After much experimentation here is what worked for me:
2. I painted a layer of of the store bought resin kit I found at Hobby Lobby on each of my flowers and then stuck them standing up straight out of a thick floral block. I did about 30 because I wasn't sure how many I was going to need. **Side note, this is going to get messy and the product is going to run. NO BIGGY. It only gets not the floral block. Let them dry completely. Depending on the weather this could take a while. The flowers shouldn't be sticky to the touch.
3. Use floral wire to cut the stems and repeat the process of painting on resin because I wanted to make sure they were sturdy. If you can reuse the same floral block great. I bought a second one so I wouldn't have to fuss with as much. I really wanted the flowers to pop so I took a very fine grain iridescent glitter and dusted them liberally while the resin was still wet.
4. Let dry completely and cut the wire shorter/off depending on your needs. I left some of the wire so I could use it to attach to the base of my crown and was able to glue rhinestone sin the center and around the flower so they really stood out.
The end result was awesome!! I'll be trying this again with other flowers. Venessa Santos
- Corpus Christi, Texas USA