Enamel project with 10yo

I have consented to do a Christmas project with my son’s class of 30
and have chosen to do fold formed cloisonee ornaments. I am finally
getting back into enamelling after a few years hiatus and some things
have been forgotten. I have had to up the price for the kids once and
would hate to have to do it again. Trouble is, I budgeted for copper
wire cloisons instead of pure silver. Is this going to be disastrous?
We can live with some gentle oxidation around the cloisons, after
all, it is a kid’s project.

Thanks for the fabulous forum! I learn so much!!


You must be a brave soul to want to do cloisonee with 30 kids as it
is a time consuming to do cloisonee. wouldn’t had been easier to do a
stencile project with them. It would have been easier and a lot
cheaper and the kids success rate would be higher.I am pursuming
these are young kids not teenagers. If you are doing this with
teenages it might be worth the risk but young kids. WIth stenciling
they are sifting the enamel on the copper but with cloisonee they
have to set the wires and than fill them. One option if you want to
use the wires is to sift the enamel and then have them place some of
the wire in the enamel for embellishment.

Ooh, I have to agree with Leslie. Unless you want to fire down
cloisonee wires on 30 ornaments yourself and then keep refiring,
etc., I would re-think this idea. Make it easy for you and everyone
involved. Sift and fire. Easy and productive. Thirty 10 year olds and
enamel is a lot of dust and energy. What are the fold forms you plan
to make?

I just finished resin inlay with 13 bright teenagers which was great
fun, but they all wanted fancy shapes, and resin inlay oh, did I
mention, all of this in just five hours? I kept telling the teacher
over and over, you are asking for a lot in five hours, and this was
just five minute epoxy! We made silver circles of 14 ga wire and
soldered them together like large rectangular jump rings. That way
the kids could manipulate the wire any way they wanted, and of
course, being kids, they wanted more, more, more. My assistant and I
sat in a corner and took turns soldering, all afternoon.

How much time do you have with these kids? Do you have help?

Good luck you intrepid teach of 10 year olds. Let us know how it all
turns out.

School for Jewelry and the Metalarts
50 Guinan St.
Waltham, MA 02451
781 891 3854