China Painting Without A Kiln

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Have you ever wanted to paint on china or pottery but couldn’t afford the expense of buying a kiln?

Here’s great news for you crafters – you can now paint on pottery, china, terracotta or glass with low-fire paint that is fired in your own kitchen oven!

China painting has been a decorative art for adults and children for many years.

However, it always entailed heading out to the local ceramic shop that offered open painting sessions and the use of their professional kilns. Now, using today’s technology, you can paint on any heat resistant pottery or glass product and fire your creations in your kitchen oven.

Start A Cottage Industry

You may have seen examples of painted mugs, plates, bowls and glassware on Pinterest or on-line selling venues like eBay or Etsy. Hand-painted giftware has become a home industry for many entrepreneurial crafters. By purchasing inexpensive dishware and producing a line of hand painted products, these crafty individuals have created a niche market that’s not only fun but also profitable.

Kid-Friendly Craft

China painting is also a fun craft for kids. Wouldn’t it be nice for the kids to make gifts their family would actually use? Personalized mugs or glasses for Mothers’ Day, Father’s Day, birthdays, Christmas or Grandparent’s Day are perfect gifts for family members. And, the little crafters will be proud to present a gift the recipient will like and use.

Pebeo Porcelaine 150 Non-Toxic Acrylic Paint Set ASIN: B0042SREXW

This French paint manufacturer has been around since 1919 and developed their revolutionary low-temperature china paint in 1998. This innovative paint is now available in several forms, from jars and tubes to markers and outliners.

The Porcelaine 150 paint is a tough, acrylic paint that is non-toxic. It received the ASTM D-4236 Seal of approval from Duke University. It also holds the ACMI AP Seal for non-toxicity and conforms to toy standard 71.3, so it’s safe for use by children. Porcelaine 150 paint contains no lead or cadmium.

What You Get With The Porcelaine 150 Paint Set

The 10-bottle set of 1.5 oz (45 ml) paints has pretty much every basic color you need to create a full-color palette. The manufacturer also offers a wide variety of other hues, but this essential set is a great starting point.

The colors include Ivory (White), Anthracite (Black), Marseille Yellow, Scarlet (Red), Lapis (Blue), Sapphire (Dark Blue), Olivine (Dark Green), Green Gold, Gold, and Esterel (Brown).

Although 1.5 oz. doesn’t sound like a lot, the paint really goes a long way. Since you’re generally painting items with small motifs and quotes, you’ll be able to paint loads of gift items with the set. I use a toothpick to pick up paint from the bottle. Just a couple dips in the paint is enough to paint lots of little flowers, swirls or what-have-you. Using that method, you won’t waste any of the paint, and you can control the exact amount you remove from the bottle.

The paint is water soluble, but Pebeo also makes a thinner specifically designed for this product. One usually doesn’t need to thin the paint unless it would be for transparent glazes. The paint dries to the touch in approximately five minutes.

Some of the colors are more translucent than others. Black, red, and yellow are particularly translucent. The white paint is very opaque and makes rich pastels. Although the paint dries to the touch in a few minutes, it becomes tacky very quickly. Repeated brushstrokes are usually a small disaster, but it can be easily remedied with a bit of paper towel dipped in Isopropyl alcohol.

Paint And Wait

Once your masterpiece is complete, the paint needs to cure for 24 hours. At that point, place it in a cold oven and set the temperature to 300 degrees Fahrenheit (150 C). When the temperature reaches 300 degrees Fahrenheit (150 C), bake it for 35 minutes. Turn off the oven and allow it to cool. This slow warming and cooling helps prevent sudden temperature changes that may cause the pottery to crack or break.

Sketching Or Freehand

I’ve found it’s easier to sketch out my design before I start painting. I use a water soluble, black graphite pencil to roughly lay in my design. This Sketch and Wash pencil is soft enough to make a line on the hard ceramic surface. After the paint has cured, but before it goes in the oven, I take a damp paper towel and swipe it over any areas that have pencil marks to remove them before baking.

See some beautiful examples below…

Hand Painted Mug

Hand Painted Mug

If you’re of the free spirit mindset, go ahead and paint away without any rough sketching. If you make a mistake or decide to go a different direction, you can easily remove the paint with Isopropyl alcohol. For tiny areas, use a Q-tip dipped in alcohol. For larger areas, generously wet a paper towel and lay it over the area. Let it sit a few seconds to loosen and moisten the paint and then wipe it away. You may need to repeat the process to remove every trace of paint.

Pebeo Porcelaine 150 paint is a real breakthrough for us crafty folks who want to try decorating china and glass but don’t want the expense of a full-fledged kiln and supplies. It’s easy, and the instructions are simple. You’ll have a whole new line of gifts this year for all your family and friends!

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