porcelain manufacture is extremely complex and demands meticulous
workmanship. Limoges porcelain is a result of a mix of various
components delicately measured and successively fired at a very high
temperature. A piece of Limoges porcelain often requires up to 30
processes starting with the extraction of the raw material to the final
stage of decoration. The cornerstone of Limoges Porcelain lies in the
combination of advanced modern techniques, high quality materials
and superb craftsmanship.
example of the magnificent end product
Kaolin clay - Gives the whitening and plastic quality.
Quartz - Allows the solidity of the piece.
Feldspath - Gives the porcelain it's translucence.
Casting is the creation of the shape. The process begins by
pouring the mixed liquid into deep molds that have been formed to
produce a particular design. When the liquid becomes solid the excess is
discarded. The layer shaped around the contours of the mold is the piece
The piece is then hand cleaned of to eliminate imperfections. Then
additions are made to the original form by the way handles or other
objects that can be attached to the piece. The additional objects are
glued into place and then the whole piece is fired at 980 degrees C in
order to dehydrate the porcelain. After the cooling, the piece becomes
porous and it is cleaned and prepared for enameling.
example of this superb craftsmanship
This operation is carried out by spraying or immersing of the pieces of
liquid enamel followed by "high fire" that brings the
material to a melting point of 1400 degrees C. The porcelain is then
glazed and undergoes a reduction of volume of about 12%. When it comes
out of the kiln, the pieces have differences and slight irregularities
that are inevitable yet illustrate the authenticity of individually
crafted Limoges porcelain. No two pieces of Limoges porcelain are ever
identical. At this point, the porcelain can be sold as "white
porcelain" or enter the next process called decoration..
Porcelain Decoration Process
There are many different processes of decoration. Each requires top
quality craftsmen using experience gathered over many years. In all
cases, the process is to apply glazed colors and sometimes precious
metals to the porcelain. Once fired at the different temperature, they
will adhere perfectly to the enamel of the porcelain.
The most commonly used method is the transfer by chromolithography. It
is achieved by the application on the porcelain of a special sheet that
is placed in the desired area, on the pieces to be decorated. The sheets
are initially created by offsetting printing or serigraphy. Sometimes
the pieces that are decorated this way are complemented with a simple
design using a brush.
The most desirable and the most expensive method, is the hand made design.
It is the creation, by ink-pin, and/or the brush designs that are more
complex, and often recreated from old models or born from the designers
example of the exquisite end product
All the above
Robert Haviland and C. Parlon Limoges Porcelain can be viewed and