Tear Drop Champlevé EarringsRegular price $110.00
Black and silver tear drop pure silver champlevé earrings.
Approximate Dimensions: 1 inch x 1 inch
By: Terri Hickey
What is enamel?
The origin of enameling can be traced to ancient times when vitreous (made from glass) enamels where used on and in metal work. This practice reportedly enabled the artist to use glass in place of rare gemstones--for example, cobalt glass in place of lapis lazuli and a reddish/brown color for garnets. Modern day vitreous enamels can still be found in these original colors along with many others, expanding the artist's palette.
Enamels are fine particles of glass applied to metal to add color. Enamels are typically applied by dry shifting the particles onto the surface or by wet packing the enamels into channels or depressions in the metal. Once applied, enamels are heated until they soften and flow; the heat source used is a kiln or torch. The mineral composition of each enamel effects how the glass reacts in the heat and how it reacts on the metal.
What are different styles of enameling?
People often do not realize there are several forms of enameling techniques. They associate enamel with cloisonné. Cloisonné is a style of enamel and refers to the design element, not the enamel. So, cloisonné is enamel but not all enamel is cloisonné. There are many types of enamel work in jewelry. Cloisonné, champlevé, plique-a-jour, basse-taille, to name a few.
What is Cloisonné?
Cloisonné refers to the technique of enameling using thin wire to separate areas of enamel. A series of wires are bent using tweezers and pliers to create a drawing in wire. This is then fired to a metal background. Next enamel layers are applied within the cells, fired, the glass melts and the process is repeated until the desired number of glass layers and colors are attached. They layers of glass are applied until the glass reaches the height of the wire work. Then the piece is ground down and polished for a smooth surface.
What is Champlevé?
Champlevé enameling is the process of creating cut out sections in a design, or recessed areas, and filling them with enamel. It is completed the same way that Cloisonné is with the multiple layering and the grinding finish.
The enamel style of this piece is Champlevé.