Are you Looking for Cloisonne Pins?
Look no further, our cloisonne lapel pins are custom made with your design using this 13th-century process. Cloisonne pins are created using an ancient metalworking technique developed in the far east. A multi-step process that remains relatively unchanged today. The technique results in a jewelry-like finish that far exceeds that of other types of lapel pin processes. For this reason, cloisonné is the preferred type of hard enamel for designing a custom pin.
Cloisonne pins have a rich and unique look and the enamel can be made with a solid pigment or a transparent color. As with hard enamel pins, cloisonne has metal separating each color. Unlike hard enamel, cloisonne enamel only comes in 200 colors. It’s easy to give your image or logo shine and make the lettering really stand out. These types of pins are preferred because they have a smoother and shinier appearance than die struck and soft enamel. Though similar, this finish gives a more professional look to pins or coins and are easy to use in the workspace. Whether you are designing pins or coins for a company event or for a special celebration, the future of your party favors lies in your hands.
How Cloisonne Lapel Pins Are Made
Cloisonne pins are made the same way soft or hard enamel pins except for how the color is added to the bare metal of a pin. Cloisonne is made from glass and is added to the recessed areas of a lapel pin in a paste form. Hard fired to 1880 degrees these pins become hard as glass.
Cloisonne Is Considered A True Hard Enamel
Also known as hard enamel or epola, was originally started thousands of years ago by the Chinese. It involved creating a grid on a bronze or brass plate. The grid is then filled with hard enamel glass and fired to melt the colored glass. The process is repeated until the grid is full. The piece is then ready for polishing. The process today is still done in a similar fashion and is generally the most expensive type of lapel pin made. It is dye-stamped today to create the grid with the separator lines and recessed areas stamped into the metal. Today copper used in place of bronze or brass.
Jewelry-like hard enamel with exceptional durability!
What is cloisonne?
Cloisonné is one of the most popular styles of pin we sell, but what is it? Developed in the Far East, cloisonné is a technique that has become a popular way to finish pins and coins today. Similar to the process used to make die struck and soft enamel pins, these pins use a stamp to print a design onto a sheet of metal. Then, instead of finishing the pin or coin with normal enamel, the recessed areas of the pin or coin are filled with colored powdery glass. This gives the pins or coins a hard and glossy finish similar to the shine of jewels.
Cloisonné pins can add elegance and style to your design. Because this style looks so high quality, it can be used to dress up many different types of pins and coins. One of the biggest reasons many people choose to finish their pins and coins with this particular finish is its ability to catch people’s eye. When customers, teams and other professionals are looking for pins or coins, they look for quality.
What is the difference between hard enamel and cloisonné?
This ancient technique first starts with die striking metal blanks creating recessed areas in the metal. Color is added until filled perfectly to the edge of the metal. The firing process is very labor intensive, as they have to be filled and fired repeatedly until the desired look is achieved. The same process is used with hard enamel pins accept they fired the same way as cloisonne pins are. Hard enamel is put into an oven and heated until cured. Both styles resemble each other but the big difference is hard enamel pins can match logo colors.
Because it is a classic style, it has been able to be perfected over the years. For this reason, collectors also love pins and coins with this type of finish. However, collectors are not the only ones that like this style of finish pins. Organizations from schools to industries use cloisonné as a finish on their pins or coins. One way that a non-profit organization might use it, for example, is through awareness pins. Give vibrancy to pins or coins by adding this finish. Using it to enhance the appearance of your pins will not only cause other people to notice them but will cause discussion about your organization. Getting publicity is a huge part of maintaining a business and is important for success.
Options, Features & Enhancements
Enhancements include sandblasting the background, engraving, gemstones, plating options including gold, silver and copper plating.
Attachments include deluxe clutches, magnet backs, screw backs, safety pin backs, chain loops to a second pin, and more...
Frequently Asked Questions
How are cloisonne lapel pins made?
Cloisonne lapel pins are in the die struck family of pins. The technique used to produce them is an unparalleled and revered art form. Designs are first die-struck into a copper or metal base, creating cavities. The cavities are filled entirely by hand with the Cloisonné enamel of your choice. Colors are made from a pigmented sand exclusive to Cloisonné and must be determined using a color chart. The pins are then fired at about 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit, effectively turning the colored sand to glass. Unlike hard enamel pins, this color fill cannot be overfilled and sanded down, thus the cavities will be filled and fired repeatedly until completely filled. Finally, the lapel pins are polished, plated, and sent to you.
How are cloisonne pins made?
Majestic beauty is the tradition of the ancient Chinese art of cloisonne. Developed centuries ago in China for decorative purposes, the process is used today in crafting vases and fine and emblematic jewelry. Individually handcrafted from the initial die to the final polishing, this technique remains virtually unchanged to this day.
Step 1. A reverse image die is crafted and individually struck into the blank copper pieces. The recessed areas will allow the image to be color filled. The raised areas will appear as the detail and the "dividing walls" will separate the different colors.
Step 2. Each copper or bronze piece is then cut to the exact outline of the design. This is accomplished by making the cutting dies or piercing tools if a center hole cut is required.
Step 3. Cloisonne powder is mixed with a liquid to create a paste-like mixture. The first cloisonne color (pink) is filled into the specific recessed areas restricted by the "dividing walls" so that there is no "bleeding" or "running" of colors together.
Step 4. Each piece is fired at nearly 1700 degrees F in order to melt the powdered Cloisonne paint.
Cloisonne Hard Enamel Pins can be made plated in gold or silver
To learn more, take a look at the cloisonne pins we have made for our customers.
Step 5. Each color is filled in its specified area and fired before the next color is filled.
Step 6. Although step 6 appears as if there is bleeding of color together, the colors do not run together because the firings harden the cloisonne pigments to prevent any other colors from entering the recessed area.
Step 7. The excess cloisonne pigments (now hardened from the firing) are ground away by hand using a pumice stone wheel. Each piece is polished down to the level of the base metal (see the use of the base metal as "dividing walls", detail, and lettering).
Step 8. Each piece is polished a final time with a softer polishing wheel in order to bring out the highest degree of luster and smoothness.
Step 9. The final step, before packaging, is plating. Each piece is attached to "hanging tree" which is dipped into the specified plating material (gold or silver). The plating adheres to the exposed base metal thus converting all of the "dividing walls", detail, and lettering to gold in the example shown.