Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Enamelling- My first attempts

I had my second of ten jewellery classes this evening and I finally bit the bullet and had a go at enamelling.

I had cut out a dragon design from 1mm silver sheet, cleaned it, dusted on the opaque lavender enamel powder, fired it in the kiln and produced a glassy smooth finish, Everything had gone well and my little dragon looked lovely. Very exciting! Then... disaster! The enamel started to ping off! As the metal cooled, little popping sounds could be heard and gradually the bluish colour disintegrated. D'oh!

Undeterred, I was determined to re-enamel the piece because I really wanted to be able to wear something to remind me that I was making progress at the moment. I scrubbed what was left of the enamel off and resolved to start again. My tutor said that perhaps I had put too much enamel on and let it cool down too quickly so I tried to restrain myself with layering on the powdered enamel and left a much thinner covering. Unfortunately it was not quite enough this time so I have had to leave the little dragon in its half finished state (the surface enamel has only partially fused to the silver and has an 'orange peel' texture) and more enamel will have to be layered on next week (there wasn't enough time to finish it tonight.)

Hopefully after this first brush with enamelling I will be able to get the quantities right and produce some really nice pieces.

Here is a photo for now at least of my half finished dragon... :-)


  1. I recently started enamelling by torch so understand how unpredictable it can be sometimes!
    Your dragon will look so cool when it's finished :D

  2. Thanks so much! Hopefully next week I will be able to post photos of some successful enamelled trinkets! :-D