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how to use enamel decals

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The *Definitive* Guide to Using Ceramic Decals, Glass Fusing Decals and Enamel Decals

Have you been wondering about using ceramic decals, glass fusing decals enamel decals in your kilnwork - BUT -  you're not sure how to use them?  Well you're not alone...

We see a lot of head scratching when we talk to people about using decals.  Most people sort of get it, but they kinda don't get it too.  And we get that.  So we developed this simple Step-By-Step guide to walk people through the process and we hope you find it helpful!

These are the simple tools you will need to decorate your decals.

So let's get started.  To apply your decals you will need the following tools:

- scissors
- a kitchen towel
- a clean bowl of clean warm water
- a squeegee or mudtool
- a soft lint-free cloth
- a ceramic/ glass/ enamel body
- a kiln

step 1.  prepare a clean work space (i'm talking to you here ceramic artists.  please, whatever you do, don't use a dirty slip bowl for this).  lay a fresh tea towel flat on a table with the scissors, fresh water, a squeegee and cloth.  wash your ceramic/ glass/ enamel body in warm water.


Remove the wax paper from the decal.

step 2.  remove the wax paper from your decal if present and carefully cut around your decal.        

 TIP: put your unused decals to the side to ensure they don't get wet and therefore ruined.



Wet decal in clean, warm water for at least 30 seconds OR until it slides off backing paper easily.



step 3.  place your selected decal in the warm water and wait at least 30 seconds.  remove the decal and let is sit until it slides easily from the backing paper with little pressure.  Tip: avoid letting the decal sit too long in the water as you do not want it to float off the backing paper.

step 4.  slide the decal off the backing paper onto your ceramic/ glass/ enamel body.  do not flip the decal over.  the decal should remain face-up.  Tip: if you are not sure if your decal is face up, check back on the original item you purchased to see if your decal is reversed or not.

Use a squeegee or Mudtool to push the air and water out from under the decal.  Start from the center and push gently out towards the edges.

step 5.  carefully hold your decal in place while you use your squeegee to push out any water or air bubbles trapped under the decal.  start from the center of the decal and push out toward the edge, rotating your ceramic/ glass/ enamel as you carefully remove all; air and water from under the decal.

Carefully dry your decal and fire as per instructions.  This design available in our Stock Decal Shop.


step 6.  carefully dry your decorated lint-free cloth (e.g. old pillowcase) working from the center of the decal, gently pushing towards the edge of the decal.  allow decal to dry overnight and fire as per Milestone Decal Art firing instructions.


That's all folks!  It's pretty easy.  The two places where see the most errors are with A. not flipping the decal or with B. not getting all the water or air out from between the decal and the ware.  So take your time, listen to some music and apply your decals.  Once you do it a few times, it is really very easy!

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