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Enamel

Many of Pandora’s jewellery designs are decorated with glossy enamel, which is applied to the surface of a piece for a decorative effect and a shiny, durable finish.

We mix the enamel colours ourselves and apply them by hand, adding different layers until we obtain the desired effect.

Enamel

History

The art of enamelling dates back to ancient times. Some of the earliest pieces of enamel were discovered in the 13th century BC. The enamel technique has since been popular during various periods throughout history. The Art Nouveau era was particularly famous for its highly intricate and beautiful enamelled pieces, including the Fabergé eggs created for the Russian Tsar.

Composition

Traditional enamel is glass based. At Pandora, we use a modern material called epoxy resin enamel and it does not contain glass. Pandora enamel is far more resistant to chipping and is therefore more hard-wearing, which is crucial for Pandora charms and rings.

Technique

Pandora uses a traditional enamelling technique called “hot enamelling” on most jewellery pieces. Pandora's enamel technique involves the enamel paste being applied to recesses in the jewellery pieces. The first step to Pandora's hot enamelling process is to mix the enamel colours. Then, the enamel is applied by hand using a needle. It is then carefully levelled with a toothpick-like instrument to make sure it is completely even. A flame is then applied to remove any air bubbles. Once the enamel has been applied, it is fired in a kiln in order to fuse the enamel to the metal surface and make it more resistant to heat and chemicals.

Enamelling Effects & Techniques

Pandora uses enamel with different levels of transparency to create a number of beautiful effects. Translucent or transparent enamel reflects the light to create stunning light effects and a sense of depth. In contrast, opaque enamel adds bold, saturated colour to jewellery designs. The enamel itself can also contain different visual effects - some have a pearlescent sheen similar to mother of pearl, while others have a more pronounced glitter effect.

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Cloisonné and Champlevé

The traditional cloisonné and champlevé enamelling techniques are used to add colour to metalwork by creating small compartments that are filled with enamel paste. The cloisonné enamel technique creates partitions above the surface of the metal object. The champlevé enamel technique involves the creation of depressions below the surface.

Basse-taille enamel technique

Basse-taille is an enamel technique that reveals the base patterns of a jewellery design. This technique applies clear enamel to the surface of the metal to reveal the pattern underneath when the light hits it.

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Shaded Enamel

The shaded enamel process involves multiple layers of enamel applied to a piece of jewellery to create a natural-looking effect. Deep sterling silver channels are made in the jewellery to house the first layer of hand-applied enamel.

A second layer of enamel is used to create the shaded effect, adding more concentrated amounts of the colour to certain areas. A final transparent enamel coating is added on top to ensure a smooth surface and even shading. After each of the three layers of enamel is applied, the jewellery is then fired in an oven.

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Tie-Dye Enamel

Pandora creates a tie-dye effect with shades of blue enamel on this Blue Butterfly Wing charm to recreate the visual effect of butterfly wings.

Glitter Enamel

Pandora's glitter enamel takes the wonderful glitter effect and adds it to strong, durable enamel for a sparkly, glamourous expression.

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Transparent Enamel

Transparent enamel is simple and striking and showcases the jewellery's metal features.

Rainbow Enamel

Vibrant enamel hues are used to create a beautiful rainbow effect on some Pandora pieces.

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