Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Bead Table Wednesday--Torch Enameling and a Giveaway

Yesterday and today I've been playing a little with torch enameling.  I haven't gotten much done but I'm having fun.  


Here's what I've been working on: 


practice enameling pieces

Sorry it's such a poor picture.  The steel keys had rust on them and I used the buffer to get that off.  The key on the left has been cleaned but not enameled.  I used two methods to enamel.  I heated the second and third key from the left until red hot and dipped them in the enamel a couple of times, following directions in Barbara Lewis's excellent new book. I did the Robin's egg blue one first.  I was pleased with the enameling, although I didn't get it as high up on the key as I would have like.  I had some problems with the red one.   It threw off sparks or little burning embers when I was heating it.  This caused the enamel to pit.  I have no idea what caused this but hubby theorized it was bits of carbon flaming up.  I haven't cleaned the oxidation from the flame from any of the keys.  I rather like the oxidation on the three right hand keys so I may not remove it on those. 


The three keys on the right were done by sifting enamel onto one side and torching from below on a tripod.  I'm pleased with the way they turned out. 


Next I textured some copper washers.  I've just begun to enamel them.  The half enameled one was done by the dip method and the small one was done by sifting.  The small one is textured on the back side and the larger one that I dipped is textured on both sides of the top.  The bottom hole filled up with enamel so I'm going to have to rethink that. 


I'm so pleased with how the keys came out that I'm going to have a little giveaway.  I'm giving away your choice of one of the keys on the right:  cobalt, mauve, or bitter green.  (The mauve looks lavender to me and the bitter green is a yellow green but those are the enamel names.) I'll also be including enameled copper washers and some other items which will be determined after I go through my stash and find coordinating goodies. 


To enter leave a comment on this post.  Post on Facebook or follow the blog for extra chances.  Just leave me a comment letting me know (if you already follow leave a comment) and be sure I can contact you through your comment or include your email address. I'll cut the comments off at noon on Monday and select a winner sometime later in the day.  Good luck!

21 comments:

Cindy Eagan said...

Oooh - I'm in!! Enameling - how fun!!
Cindy

Janet said...

Hi Leslie I just ordered Barbara Lewis book on enameling! Your things are wonderful! I esp love the green key!

My Life Under the Bus said...

Oh I am sooo jealous - this looks like fun!!!I'll post to FB!

Happy Thursday!

Kim Stevens said...

Oh love the keys and the oxidation on all of them!! I got Barbara's book too and can't wait to order some supplies for home since I can't do it at class right now. I'm wondering if when dipping something with a hole if you could quickly ream with a toothpick or is it already stuck at the point of dipping? Hmmm, yes something to think about.

I think . . . hmmmm....mauve or bitter green - surprise me! ; )

Lucid Moon Studio said...

I have the torch fire enamel starter kit and just got Barbara's book. It looks like so much fun! I need to figure out where I can do it and have good ventilation...still trying to figure that out. It's too hot here in FL to do it outside or in the garage. Your pieces turned out great, thanks for sharing!

celestialdragonfly13 said...

first time to your blog! The funny thing is I just wrote a story about keys not to long ago. This is a technique that I've been interested in but have pursued. Nonetheless I enjoy a good give away!

Anonymous said...

Those are gorgeous! I have not done any enameling since our class in Houston. I would choose the green one!!!!
Marcy
mantle@piedmontcenter.com

Cindy Cima said...

Very nice keys! I posted on fb and joined.

Miss Val's Creations said...

Great work on the enameling! These look great!!! I love the cobalt. ~Val

thebearwoman2004@yahoo.com (Katie) said...

I'm such a newbie with some stuff but I do love this idea of enameling metal items. I'd love to be the winner of the dark blue or the bitter green one (I love that name!!). Keys hold a special place in my heart because my dad always had a huge ring of them - don't know if they all opened anything but they were so cool.

CraftyHope said...

Oh! I love the green one. . .but they're all so lovely. You've done an awesome job with the enameling. So very cool!!

Do Be Do Bead Do said...

Wow, love how those keys turned out! I love all of the colors and it would be tough to pick.

CraftyHope said...

I've also posted about this on my FB page! (CraftyHopeJewelry)

Kat Hostetter said...

I want them -all- :D

What I want even more is for you to teach me how to do it. :D

Alice said...

I just love these enameled pieces! I would love to learn the art but have so many other mediums to try first.

Alice said...

I'm a follower of your blog.

Holly said...

Oh, what gorgeous pieces you've done here! In particular I love that lavender key and the royal blue too :)

SuziCQ said...

Well, I'm too late for your give-away, but I love the keys! Also, I didn't know about Barbara Lewis' book, so I went and checked that out. I totally want it! So a big thanks for the book mention :), I didn't know you could enamel with a torch!

Leslie Todd said...

SuziCQ, I was thrilled when I first heard you can enamel with a torch. And it's a good way to try it out without the expense of a kiln. I took classes from Susan Lenart Kazmer and Richard Salley where we did torch enameling.

Silver Jewelry Jaipur said...

hay really nice and great work very nice good work

Barbara Lewis said...

Hi Leslie, These look pretty darned good! I think the sparks from the one key probably has something to do with the composition of the metal. It recently happened to be and I was surprised, so I don't think it's the carbon of the flame. As far as a hole filling in with enamel, if you're not putting a mandrel in the hole, make the hole larger than you would normally. :-)