Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Experimenting with Enamels

After learning how to enamel using a torch just about a year ago, I've done mostly conventional things with the enamels. I started another conventional enameling session a few days ago and quickly got bored. Time for experiments!

This is how it started. I love this long shape, but it's tricky because it doesn't fit well on the trivets that are required to hold the pieces in place. As a result, I had to do a third coat and that's when the black spots appeared. They give the earrings a rustic look, but that was not my original intent.

Next up were these circles that I cut using two different sized circle cutters. Nice, but not so exciting. Love the colors I selected though! I still have the tiny circles that were cut from the center and I'm trying to decide what to do with them. 

On these next pieces, I enameled with a solid color and then sprinkled on a contrasting color.

I also experimented with counter enamels. I discovered that black works best for me, as it does not discolor when firing the top color. The flame is applied from below and most lighter colors will show some sort of effect from that. While black works, it's also a bit boring, so I did this next on the backs of a few pieces. I brushed Klyr-Fire (holding agent) on a tiny rubber stamp, stamped it on the copper, dusted it with black enamel, then covered the entire piece with clear. Then I fired it. I think a second firing with another coat of clear would have been a good idea, but I did not do that. Next time.

The last experiment was with two shades of brown enamel and some seed beads. A small Post-It note helped me get a clean line between the two colors (3 separate firings). The seed beads were placed during the third firing and I wasn't sure that they were secure enough. So, I followed with a coat of clear, sprinkled over the entire surface, included the beads. I really like the effect. Or maybe I like that they remind me of Hostess cupcakes!


Patty Woodland said...

Nothing wrong with a cupcake :)

I like the last pair

Cinnamon Jewellery said...

I love the last pair too. The yellow and blue pair look really good with the speckly rustic look :D

Mimi {SignatureSterling} said...

Now if you can just work on a Twinkie ;) JK! I love the rustic look as well on the first ones. Great work :)

Libellula Jewelry said...

I'm actually quite drawn to the colorful circles. I've always worn a lot of jewelry with the circular motif (I find them especially comfortable in earrings) so, I'm not surprised. Great colors & beautiful work!

Brandi Hussey said...

I love that bright yellow teardrop in the top photo - so fun!!

Miss Val's Creations said...

The pieces look really cool! Nice work! Enameling is something I have not tried yet. It seems like a fun challenge!

Beth Norman said...

Love your work. The two tone brown is interesting.