The technique of enamelling has been used for centuries. A paint is applied to a surface that can withstand being fired to high temperatures. The entire object is then placed in a kiln so that the powder in the paint melts and fuses to form a hard surface. Modern materials, such as sprays and catalysts to allow low-temperature firing, have made the process much easier and more widely used.
Thoroughly clean the object that is to be painted. Wipe it down with alcohol and allow it to dry completely.
Spray the enamel paint evenly, ensuring that no drips or runs appear. Allow the paint to air-dry. Depending on the paint used, this can be from two to 24 hours. Check dryness by touching lightly in a hidden area.
Bake the project in an oven or kiln at 148 degrees C (300 degrees F) for 45 minutes. Smaller projects can be baked for less time, depending on the amount of paint used.
Allow the project to cool completely before removing from the kiln or oven. Enamel can be applied again if there are any bare spots, or if a second layer is needed.
- Kathy Wadleigh, Paper-N-Clay Craft Center, Bangor, Maine
- "The Art of Enameling: Techniques, Projects, Inspirations"; Linda Darty; 2004
- Check instructions on the spray can for specific drying times and to verify temperature and time for firing, as different brands can vary.
- Multiple thin coats will result in a better finish than one thick coat of paint.
- Some enamels can release fumes or should not be fired. Check the label before using and ensure adequate ventilation
- Be certain the object being painted can withstand firing temperatures.