Craft NSW

costume jewellery . beadwork . decoupage at Craft NSW


lustre costume jewellery

Lustreware is a type of ceramic glazing which is Middle Eastern in origin. Metal salts used as glazes, result in a metallic lustrous irridescent sheen on ceramic costume jewellery.

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Intended for use as a fashion item, as opposed to 'real' (or fine) jewellery which may be regarded primarily as collectibles, keepsakes or investments, costume jewellery is usually made of less valuable materials such as base metals, glass, plastic, fabrics, enamel, paper and beads or synthetic stones.


beadwork jewellery

The archaeological record has many examples of durable beads. They were used for religious purposes, lucky talismans, or for barter. To create jewellery beads are attached to one another by stringing them with a sewing needle or beading needle and thread or thin wire, or sewing them to cloth.

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Beadwork techniques are broadly divided into loom and off-loom weaving, stringing, bead embroidery, bead crochet, and bead knitting.

Egyptian faience was very widely used for early beadwork. Faience is a mixture of powdered clays and lime, soda and silica sand mixed to a paste with water, moulded then fired into a bead.  The result is a hard bead covered in bluish glass. These beads predate glass beads and were probably a forerunner of glass making.

In the Americas, the Cherokee used bead work to tell stories. They told them by the patterns in the beads. They used dried berries, corn, teeth, bones, claws, or sometimes sea shells when they traded with coastal tribes.  Beadwork in Europe has a history dating back millennia to a time when shells and animal bones were used as beads in necklaces.  Glass beads were being made in Murano by the end of the 14th century, beaded flowers were being made as early as the 16th century in France.



'Japanning' as it was known in 18th century England, or Decoupage, is the art of decorating an object, commonly a small box or an item of furniture, by gluing colored paper cutouts on, in combination with special paint effects such as gold leaf.

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Each layer is sealed with varnishes (often multiple coats) until the 'glued' appearance disappears and the result looks like painting or inlay work. The traditional technique used 30-40 layers of varnish which were then sanded to a polished finish.


decorative painting . folk art

Bauernmalerei, or folk art, was once considered 'peasant' painting. Everyday household objects such as tables, chests, wardrobes, cabinets, or the gables of houses were decorated with colourfully painted motifs, usually of traditional design.

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Today's painters are not bound by tradition and apply their paints freely using a variety of designs or motifs on many forms.


porcelain painting

Porcelain or china painting, which uses clay as a canvas, has its origins in China with potters who decorated porcelain.

The Chinese developed this long before Marco Polo's arrival in the 13th century.

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The technique involves the painting of a design with 'overglaze' colours onto glazed porcelain.When the piece is fired the glaze on the china softens, allowing the thin layer of paint to be fixed. This overglaze procedure is repeated many times to reach the required depth of colour and the finish is then permanent.

The materials used include gold, platinum and lustres. Enamels and paint in powder form containing precious metals, oxides and flux and are also used. Most porcelain today comes from Japan, Germany and France, with England producing fine bone china.

Porcelain painting, like all handcraft, is labour intensive, so that today the most expensive commercial dinnerware is not hand painted, but decals (or processes of photographic reproduction) are commonly used.