My enamel practice for 2014 started with teaching a Saturday mini-workshop at a local jewellery studio here in Seattle. The owner of the studio, Dana, was holding this class for a bunch of her close friends and so most of the attendees were acquaintances, if not actual friends of mine.
So what was I to do when shenanigans ensued?
Luckily they all worked as hard as they played – here’s some of their test firings on steel can, regular mild steel and Thompson’s Low Carbon Steel test squares. Dana even made a pair of ‘potato chip’ earrings, firing the beige onto ovoid sections of the rippled steel can.
It was also my first opportunity to test the Thompson GC-16 Cobalt Blue, otherwise know as their ground coat. It worked really well, though a couple of people remarked to me that they actually preferred the colour of the clear enamel on the raw steel and so would probably stick to that as a base coat. I’m inclined to agree, but I’m happy to have some of the GC-16 in my supplies for more stubborn pieces of recycled steel.
As a real test for the ground-goat I slathered a layer over a piece of low carbon steel that I had not sandblasted, only washed with some detergent and scoured it with a pretty crummy piece of Scotchbrite. It actually fared better than I expected.