Fused Glass Painting
With Enamel

Glass Enamel

Use glass painting with glass enamel to decorate fused art glass jewelry pieces.

Glass fusing painting and decoration for glass jewelry can be carried out in a number of ways

The use of lead free opaque and transparent enamel powders is one of the major techniques in use today.

The colors can be mixed which means an extremely wide palette of colors is available.

They are not enamels in the normal sense but finely ground glass particles with a low melting point, which after being applied are fired in a glass kiln so that the enamel is fused to the jewelry piece.

Paints come as low-fire or hi-fire powders, the firing temperature between the different types and brands can vary so you need to check the makers firing temperatures.

Glass bead makers can roll their hot beads through enamel powder and pickup up a color layer.

Enamel powder can be combined with a water based medium and mixed with frit or glass powder and packed into pate de verre molds and then fired.



Safety

Care must be taken when handling glass enamel to ensure that the particles are not inhaled as this could lead to serious lung disease.

Always wear a respirator or mask when handling these powders. Good ventilation is highly recommended

Dry Enamel Powder

Dry enamel powder is applied by placing powder in a small sifter and then sifting onto the glass or by applying with a brush.

Stencils or tape can be used to mask off areas of the glass. A texturing tool can be used to produce patterns in the enamel.

Sifting powder over objects held above the glass can produce interesting patterns. Fine combs or fine mesh are a couple of items you can use.

A number of firings may be required to produce different color layers and to ensure fixing of the colors.

Wet powder

Enamel powders can be applied wet by mixing with a painting medium either water or oil based.

Water based mediums are easier to clean up; the important thing is that the medium does not leave any residue behind after firing.

Wet enamel is applied by brush; normal craft paint brushes are suitable for this.

Rubber stamps and sponges can also be used with wet enamel to create special effects.

One of the largest enamel suppliers is Thompson Enamels where you will find a lot of further enamel information and publications.

Excellent paints are also produced by Fuse Master and Unique Glass Colors.

Paints come as low-fire or hi-fire powders, the firing temperature between the different types and brands can vary so you need to check the makers firing temperatures.



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