enamelling #3

first steps towards cloisonné, inlaying different types of wire onto an enamel base-coat. all pieces were counter enamelled first. top row had firescale sanded off and covered with flux. bottom row had “sky blue” opaque enamel applied over firescale.  the blue behaved in a similar way to the green i used on my previous batch – a very uneven,  textured result. i used diluted pva as a holding agent, when this was allowed to dry sufficiently there was little difference from dry-sifted powder, except for slight texturing.

my main problem was keeping pieces flat and preventing wires sliding out of place on the surface. the counter-enamelled backs made everything much more precarious on the trivets. i’m hoping to make a set of smaller trivets that hold the sides, rather than the underneath surface, of the pieces.

top row l-r:

  • 1mm wire. i was able to shape the wires to fit fairly neatly onto the domed surface. sliding in the kiln was the main issue.
  • approx. 0.6mm wire. the wires were not shaped but could be pressed into place on the enamel surface after removal from the kiln.
  • approx. 2mm strips cut from copper foil. uneven adherence to enamel.

bottom row l-r:

  • approx. 4mm strips cut from copper foil, wrapped to the reverse to hold in place during firing.
  • copper tape (thinner than foil) approx. 2mm strips. very rough test pieces. these slumped in the kiln to shape to the formed surface. adherence was better than foil strips.
  • copper tape multiple 3D strips. poor adherence but additional layers of enamel should hold in place.

my next experiments will involve filling between the wires on these pieces, and rolling wires before firing onto enamel base coats.

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