HomepagePreparationsTeam ChinaWorld's TeamsTorch Relay
EconomyForeign ReportsExclusiveSpecialPhotosVideos
Beijing plans traffic controls in 35 areas for Olympics openingVillage welcomes New Zealand athletesNew Zealand rowers arrive in Beijing "Holding the Games clearly is a major marker in China's emergence as a global player""One World, One Dream" aspiration to realize in Beijing Beijing: Cloudy 31-23 ℃
Chinese Cloisonne(景泰蓝)
14:48, July 15, 2008

Cloisonné is well-known traditional enamelware with a history that dates back more than 500 years. It is often called the "Blue of Jingtai" for two reasons. First, blue is the most commonly used color in enameling and secondly, cloisonné became prevalent during the reign of Jingtai (1450-1456) during the Ming dynasty. Thanks to its brilliant color and splendid designs, cloisonné is highly valued in China and abroad. Making cloisonné is a complicated process that consists of six steps: base-hammering, soldering, enamel-filling, enamel firing, polishing and gilding.

1. Base-hammering

Copper is used to make the body of cloisonné because it can be easily hammered and stretched. This step determined the piece’s thickness and weight.

2. Filigree Soldering

In this step, the the cloisonné craftsman adheres copper strips onto the body in a manner similar to embroidery. Measuring only 1/16 inches wide, these strips are placed onto the body in a complicated design.

3. Enamel Filling

This next step requires basic elements like boric acid, saltpeter and alkaline. Different elements are used to make different colors. Iron produces gray, uranium creates yellow, chromium produces green, bronze makes blue, zinc creates white and gold or iodine produce red. Workers grind these materials into fine powders and then apply them onto the cloisonné.

4. Enamel Firing

Next, the cloisonné is fired and hardened. Enamel refilling is repeatedly required during this step, as heat from the fire causes the enamel to slightly sink.

5. Polishing

To make the piece even, the artisan has to polish the product again and again during firing. The first material used is emery while the second is whetstone. Lastly, a piece of hard carbon is used to give the piece luster.

6. Gilding

Finally, craftsmen place the cloisonné in gold or silver fluid with an electric current to keep it from rusting. After more electroplating and a slight polish, the piece is completed.

Comments Related News
 Chinese Embroidery(刺绣)
 China Folk Toys(民间玩偶)
 China Jade Carvings(玉雕)
 Chinese Knots(中国结)
 Chinese Seal(篆刻)
 Snuff bottles(鼻烟壶)
Most Popular News
·Gala show in retrospect of China's century-old passion for the Games
·Interview: Ghanaian President impressed by Beijing Olympic preparations
·Polish Olympic official: China to have best Olympic Games in history
·Tian'anmen Square dressed up to embrace Olympics
·Olympic business booms in Beijing
Latest Photos
Traditional Beijing delicacies in Wangfujing snack street
Traditional Beijing delicacies in Wangfujing snack street
Olympic homestay
Olympic homestay
Latest Videos
"Jouney to the East"--by BBC
Popular Features

Copyright © 1997-2008 by www.people.com.cn. all rights reserved