Skip to main content

Creating A Matt Finish On Torch Enamel Jewellery

Being a jewellery maker I love watching jewellery making videos, and especially learning new tricks that I can use on a technique I'm familiar with. A video I watched recently was Further Explorations In Jewelry Enameling: Kiln Fired Liquid Enamel And Sgraffito With Susan Lenart Kazmer. I don't enamel with a kiln but the techniques covered are still relevent for torch enamelling. It's a great video full of new ideas and Susan Lenart Kazmer is a likeable teacher.

One of the techniques covered was giving enamel a matt finish using Etchall etching cream. I've seen how lovely enamel jewellery looks with a matt finish and have always been intrigued with it and have thought of trying it myself in the past. The video showed how easy it was to achieve so I went on the cyber hunt for Etchall cream. I found some on ebay for £34 and another etching cream called Armour Etch. I really wanted the Etchall brand so started Googling it until I found some at a much more sensible price of £15.54 plus £2.95 postage from MDP Supplies.

Yesterday afternoon I decided to have a go........
I dug out some old enamelled bits I'd "tidied" into a plastic bag and forgot about. Some of them are pieces I started then decided for whatever reason {no idea!} to abandon and a couple were colour test pieces for a customer.

I cleaned the enamel by wiping over with kitchen towel to remove any dust or grease then applied the Etchall cream with a brush. I wore latex gloves as the cream will irritate skin.

The Etchall cream has the consistency of yoghurt and needs to be applied thickly and as evenly as possible. I went over any patchy areas with some more of the cream if it was needed.

After 15 minutes I used the brush to remove the etching cream and scraped it back into the pot as it is reusable, although for small pieces it's probably not worth bothering. I washed the rest of the cream off in water and dried the enamelled piece.

The result was a smooth egg-shell texture which I think looks great. It's very tactile and feels like smooth stone to touch.

I applied the cream to one side of this piece so the difference with the normal shiny finish can be compared. This piece had a layer of turquoise transparent over the opaque enamels before it was etched.

The green and pink flowers were half-finished abandoned pieces that had been enamelled with just one coat of opaque enamel so are a bit patchy but the etching cream worked well on them. I like the matt effect on the black enamel too.

In conclusion, the etching cream is a definite hit with me and something I will be using to give a variation in the finish of my enamel jewellery. It's so quick and easy to use. One of the advantages of using it is there's no light reflection on the matt finish which can be a nuisance when you photograph enamel stuff.
Now I just wish I'd tried it sooner :D


  1. What a great idea. Gorgeous matte surface. I can see that working wonderfully with resist patterns on top too. Lovely.

    1. Thanks Nana. I have some small vinyl stickers that would work as a resist.........good idea!

  2. With every visit to your blog it makes me want to venture into the world of enamelling more and more.
    Heather :)

    1. Yes I have been a bit enamel obsessive with my posts recently!

  3. I love matte finishes so these look fab to me! Have etched glass and stone with this product, but never thought of using it on enamel. Will have to try it now so many thanks for the tip!

    (My sis and I also chuck glass in a stone tumbler to give it that matte sea glass finish, but that might perhaps be too tough on enamel?)

    1. Thanks Maneki. It isn't recommended to put enamel in a tumbler plus I think it would take a very long time to acheive a matt finish that way!

  4. I love the results Tracy! Glare is a pain in the butt when photographing. The matte finish is also great for the end user since the jewelry will look consistent all the time. :)

    1. Thanks Val. Now I'll have to make some more enamel jewellery so I can etch it!

  5. I put my glass etch paste into a shallow container. Apply a loop of tape to the rear of the enameled piece and put it face down into the etch. Find it gives an even level etched surface compared to brushing


Post a Comment

Your comments and questions are very welcome!
If you would prefer to contact me directly please use the contact form on my "get in touch" page.

Popular posts from this blog

Etching Silver Using Nail Art Stamps

So my love/hate relationship with etching sterling silver continues. I've tried a few times now and always end up with different results most of them not that great to be honest. I've tried connecting the silver and a piece of copper to a 9v battery and also heating the ferric nitrate. Sometimes the results are good sometimes not so good. I currently have an etched piece of silver sheet waiting to be reticulated and rid it of the mess that is the etched "pattern". 
I now know that using stamps and Stayz On ink just doesn't work with silver - the time needed to etch using ferric nitrate is much longer than etching copper and the ink starts to wear away after about an hour. This results in the pattern being patchy as the resist is eaten away and the silver ends up quite lumpy and course looking. I have yet to try using pnp paper. I don't know why but it all seems a bit of a faff to do. I don't have a laser printer so would need to find somewhere or someone…

Embossing Metal With My Sizzix Bigshot

I must admit up until a few weeks ago I was vaguely familiar with the name Sizzix but as to what you actually did with a "Sizzix" I was completely in the dark! That was until I stumbled across a video from Vintaj showing how you could use their embossing folders with a Bigshot to create designs on metal ("metal" - my favourite word after chocolate!)
I was really impressed and itching to have a go, I just needed a Bigshot........ I waited a few weeks then when the urge to possess one overcame me I went out debit card at the ready..............and the shop had sold out! So I trundled off to The Range on the off chance and came home clutching my own surprisingly heavy pink and black wonder machine. It sat on the dining room table for a couple of days while I waited for the embossing folders I'd ordered online to arrive then the time came to start playing!

I started with some pre-cut 24g copper hearts and the Wildflower Vines and the Butterfly Swirls Deco Embossin…

Rolling Mill Textures On Metal

I had another play with my rolling mill last week using some of the texture sheets from Etsy shop Rolling Mill Resource. I used some sterling silver and copper sheet and soon discovered it's best to get organized before you start!

I cut the sheet to size and worked out which design was going on which piece of metal. I also tried a feather but more on that later. Most of the sheet I used was 20g/0.8mm with one piece of 18g/1.0mm and one of 22g/0.6mm.
I've read that you should do a dead pass of the metal through the rolling mill with the gap the same size as the metal and texturing item. I'm not sure what this is supposed to achieve but I don't bother doing it. Judging the correct size of gap between the rollers is a trial and error thing that you discover by setting the gap then starting to roll the metal through. If there's too much resistance you make the gap bigger until there's just enough resistance to roll the metal through without giving yourself a herni…