How to Cloisonne Enamel

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Cloisoinne is an age-old technique of applying colored glass to copper, silver and gold using thin wires to separate the cells. It is a beautiful art form that can be used for making small objects such as jewelry and religious images, to much larger items like bowls, vases and enamel sculptures.

Things You'll Need

  • Kiln
  • Silver wire, fine
  • Gold, depletion gilded sterling silver, fine silver or copper metal in shape of choice
  • Klyr-Fire
  • Alundum Stone
  • Fiberglass brush

Preparing and Firing Cloisonne`

  • Clean your metal thoroughly then spray it with a thin, even coat of Klyr-Fire mixed with water.

  • Arrange the cloisonne silver or copper wire in the desired design. The wire will stick to the Klyr-Fire until the piece is fired.

  • Wash your enamel pieces. Add wet enamel to the metal in the design you're using.

  • Put your cloisonne piece into a kiln that is heated to 1,600 degrees. When the enamel melts, remove piece and allow to cool.

  • Add more enamel and repeat the process. You may need to do this several times to get the desired look.

  • Smooth your piece by grinding it with alundum stone under water.

  • Wash the piece using a fiberglass brush.

  • Fire-polish your cloisonne piece. Allow to cool completely.

Tips & Warnings

  • Don't do anything to try to cool the piece faster as it could crack the enamel. Let it cool naturally.

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References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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