CREATING AN ENAMEL PLAQUE
Enamelling is the craft of applying powdered glass onto a metal surface (usually copper) and firing it in a kiln. Enamel melts around 800°Centigrade and becomes a glaze on cooling.
Copper wire is bent and placed over an outline 'cartoon' drawing of the design on paper. Sheet copper is cut to the required size and
prepared for enamelling. Enamel flux is sieved
onto the plaque. Using tweezers, the wire
design is carefully transferred to the powdered surface and fired. On cooling, the wires
become fixed to the enamel surface. Sections (or cloisons) thus formed are
filled with wet enamel paste. The wire 'walls' prevent colours
It is then fired a second time. The hot plaque is removed from the kiln and, when it cools the actual colours emerge jewel-like in their glassy brilliance.
Arctic Tern, finished enamel plaque