Welcome to my blog about Enamels & Enameling of Cloisonne Jewelry Techniques, Plique a Jour, Champleve and many other Enamel Jewelry Techniques. This site is a donation of everyones time to share and further the education of the fine art of enameling. I am very happy to answer questions to help you, but please ask here and not emailing me directly. It save me time and others can share also. Thanks!!
Each Topic on the left of this page is a chapter that is constantly growing as I add demos and information to them. So visit often and learn the beautiful art of Cloisonne and many other Enamel techniques.
I create Gold Enamel Jewelry, from my own designs and custom enamel jewelry. It is wonderful to help a client design a unique piece of jewelry that is like no one else’s. I don’t know about you, but I do not like to look like everyone else. I am a unique individual and want what I wear to say so. If you ever want to take your enamel jewelry, plique a jour or cloisonné jewelry to the next level do not hesitate to contact me to help. I only create the finest enamel jewelry.
I joined this past year Elisa Melegari a designer and artist, in creating a jewel called the “The Dragon”. Named by the client Whoopi Goldberg. This bracelet and ring combo was inspired by the bracelet designed by Alphonse Mucha and executed by George Fouquet, “The Serpent” 1899 for Sarah Bernhardt.
The Ada Brooch
This beautiful brooch of Plique a Jour lead Tom Herman and I to an excited level of appreciation of this delicate technique. Together with the assistance of the Mendocino Art Center Jan 11 – 15. Tom and I will be teaching our two specialities.
Tom Herman you probably know as www.sevennfingers.com will teach chasing and carving. He is a true Master! Students in his class will sculpt metal into ornamental patterns using Bas Relief techniques, as well as engraving and saw piercing.
In my class we will explore Plique a Jour in 3D, known as backless cloisonné or windows of light. With the knowledge of the expansion of various enamels and capillary action you will be able to put your skills to the test. With a provided sample 3D leaf in fine silver measuring 3″ x 1/2″ and cells of 2 x 8 mm, will be already formed and saw pierced for you. You will have time to study enamels that work best for the technique as well as floating the enamels in very large cell openings and adding multiple colors and shades in each cell. Once you have mastered this you are encouraged to bring fine silver or 18K gold sheet to form, saw pierce and create our own 3D jewels of light.
Mendocino Art Center
Let’s take an in-depth look at the early Master”s work of Plique a Jour including how they possibly achieved this extraordinary work. Jan 11 – 15. These two workshops will be followed by two open studio sessions where artist will receive our assistance for a couple of hours each day. Artist are invited to join us for part or all. Open session will be Jan 18- 22
During the open studio time Tom and I will be building = alloying, forming, chasing, saw piercing, and enameling a Matilija Poppy. A long time resident of the art center. Once completed the brooch will be auctioned and proceeds will go to benefit the Mendocino Art Center. Students will be able to join us for demos as we work through the process. Watching over our shoulder will also give you a chance to learn.
Registration www.mendocinoartcenter.org/masters.html or call 707-937.5818
Photo of a Matilija Poppy TomHerman and I will be building and enameling the two weeks of Jan Open Studio Jan 18- 27 come and join us!
In the early fall of last year, I was invited to view this Magnificent Jewel with a couple of friends and jewelers, Tom Herman and Leila Tai. The Newark Museum had recently purchased Ada Rehan’s Morning Glory Brooch, and Ulysses Dietz the Chief Curator of the museum was kind enough to have us visit and view the brooch first hand.
Several years prior I traveled to NY’s Forbes Gallery to see the brooch and it was hanging on a display just as you see it in the photo above. Never had I thought it had any movement, so it was quite the surprise when we picked it up! The movement was like a young kitten, limp in your hand.
I believe we counted 4-5 joints in the 5 inch jewel. As a brooch or pendant it would lay with the movement of the body or clothing in any position. The 3D flowers and buds allow the light to shine through to enhance the color of enamels in this plique a jour beauty. Quite amazing the structure showed no signs of stress.
It appeared the joints were assembled with copper pegs. Tom believes this makes it easier to form as a cold connection and not damage the surrounding enamels.
You can see how small the hinge is with the large flower bloom combination, allowing the bloom to move easily.
Above is a small screw showing, and below, the last two buds have a joint also to keep them in a dangling motion.
The bloom itself was enameled separately and placed into the sepal acting as a bolt to hold the bloom in place by the stamen as seen here.
The colors of enamel flow softly and gently along the chased gold stems while filling large open cells on reoccurring surface curves and accomplishing beautiful gradation of color changes. The result is outstanding!
The metal of the leaves measured 1.5mm and the average thickness of the flowers were .83mm. The stem was 2mm and the enamel average was .35mm. Not much enamel to get the color changes you see here!
Flipping between all of the images you can see how the front of the blooms have been stoned and the back was left glossy from the last firing.
In a couple of books on enameling written in the 1800’s they mention using 200 grit enamels to have them lighter than say, 80 grit as I like to use in Cloisonne. The lighter weight should help to hold them in place to have a successful fusion.
The clasp I would also like to share with you, as it also is amazing.
The curves of the pin back follow the stem structure of the jewel. It attaches to the stem with this nut and bolt finding you see above. On the opposite end is the hinge, fitting in the loop before the nut and bolt is attached to the stem. Pictured below.
Here you can see the top of the screw that is the clasp for the pin tip.
You probably notice the extra jumpring on the stem. There is one at each end for the chased and enameled necklace to attach.
There is much more to be shared. For example we found 5 of these stamped Marcus and Co. from the same time. Come and join Tom Herman and I to take an in-depth look at the early Master”s work of Plique a Jour including how they possibly achieved this extraordinary work, and give it a try yourself!
Jan 11 – 15 2017 at www.mendocinoartcenter.org/masters.html or call 707-937.5818 x10
Clear Creek Academy of Jewelry and Metal Arts
Spring 2017 | 6-day workshop
April 10, 2017 – April 15, 2017
9:30 am – 5:30 pm
Join Patsy Croft for a week of enameling! Whether you are interested in imagery or abstract representation, take your work to the next level with this classical and exciting technique. Through studying color and applying its theory to enamels, gain a better understanding of shading, gradation, and layering enamel to make your jewels standout among others.
Students will develop color knowledge starting with watercolors. Even though this is a different medium, watercolor translates very well to enamel and is more forgiving as a learning tool. Primary theory of transparent, opaque, and opal enamels will be studied and applied to a sparkling background of fine silver, combined with ribbons of 24k gold wires that create the cells. Filling these cells with beautiful colors of fine enamels will bring each “jewel” to life.
My KILNS for enameling and other artist needs. Jewelers, potters,glass work, and PMC Kilns. They are hot, fast, portable and most affordable. Kilns with 5 Star reviews!
Here is a quick view of our 55F-IP model. This is the 5 x 5 interior with an Analog controller. I have just launched my dedicated website for these kilns. Check it out here Kilns
We just had our first International order ship! Very exciting.