Susan - depending on the complexity of your design, sifting is the
easiest way to get an even coating of enamel on a flat (ish) piece.
Use a graded mesh sifter of 60, 80 or 100 mesh. You can also use
quite complicated stencils on the second or subsequent coat,
sgraffito and other fun procedures.
Since gravity is in your favour you shoul not need any klyr fire. I
only use this glue when enamelling vessels or rings, and then rather
If you are wet-packing for better accuracy, when you’ve completed a
section about 2-3cm square, draw off most excess water and very
gently tap the piece - lift the support with a firing fork and GENTLY
tap it down on the work table. This brings the remaining water up,
sits the enamel down, and gives a more even covering. Then go on to
the next section. For less complicated designs you can also tap the
side of the piece lightly for the same result - but use the vertical
method for any exact pattern, like stripes, to avoid displacement of
the wet enamels. And yes, you will probably have to stone down after
the final coat to get a good smooth surface.
As to torch firing, put the piece on a mesh and tripod (or use
firebricks up on their side to give room underneath) and use a large
’fluffy’ flame from UNDERNEATH. If you apply the flame to the top
surface you will burn the enamel. However this can be used to get an
interesting raku effect.
If you have mastered enamelling on tubing, you should find flat
surfaces much easier.
As many times before, recommended books are Ruth Ball’s 'Enamelling’
and Linda Darty’s ‘Art of Enameling’, both of which answer many
similar questions. Happy firing!