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On Glaze Decals. Just Learning...

decoration product manufacture decals stoneware porcelain digital decals dinnerware tableware food safety design template

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#1 J.Birch



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Posted 07 July 2013 - 05:48 AM

Hello there,


Im not a ceramicist (Im learning little bits here, doing workshops there...), Im an illustrative designer, but I would like to create decals of my designs
and put them onto dinnerware.


I was hoping someone out there could give me a bit of information....I have a few questions.



I would like my designs to be transfered onto stoneware or porcelain. As far as I can tell there is no issue with that?

My designs have very fine line detail, so I feel that an onglaze digital decal (as opposed to a tissue transfer, or screenprint)
would probably ensure a sharp image. However, these decals can often look raised or "stuck on"...Im trying to avoid that.

I have seen coloured digital decals that dont have that raised effect...so how is that achieved?


Do they apply the digital decal on bisque....then fire, then clear glaze, then fire again?

Or can you apply the decal, just wait for it to dry then glaze and fire?

would that affect the vibrancy of the colours printed, as I understand with digital systems you can have the whole cmyk gamut?


I understand there is an entire science behind the make up of clay, glazes and firing. If I wanted to apply a digital decal to bisqued stoneware for example,
would it have to be a decal especially for stoneware?


Additionally, I was interested to know how difficult/easy it may be applying a seamless design to the inside of a bowl or curved surface?

I imagine that you would have to follow maybe a cone shaped template, so it can be applied?




Being dinnerware, I would like the decals to be food safe.

Even if the decal manufacturer claims it is food safe, are there other factors that could cause problems?

for example the type of kiln you use, or other things that may be in the kiln while your firing?

Is it expensive to test?



Lastly, and thank you so much for you time,


As far as producing my dinnerware, I have found plenty of businesses that will custom make digital decals.

but Im finding it difficult to find any that will make AND apply the decal to your piece...even though I know they are out there.

Iam in Australia, which doesnt host such industry, but if anyone has any leads on any smaller run manufacturers or business (closer to me the better, naturally)

That would be appreciated... maybe also because Im new at this, Im not quite sure how to search for this type of business, so any resources or "buzz words" that might help me would be great.


Any info at all would be appreciated and helpful.


Thanks a lot.




#2 Mudslinger Ceramics

Mudslinger Ceramics

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 08:00 AM

Hello J... (?)


I am a potter and I live in Sydney. I have had ceramic decals made of my own photos and applied them to my dinnerware pieces.


The manufacturer here is Decal Specialists in Melbourne: http://decalspecialists.com/custom.htm  The process is not cheap, about $80 for an A3 size sheet. The images are fired on AFTER the glaze as a 3rd firing and will sink into the glaze surface if you choose the right type. Take a look at the site, it will answer many questions and give details of the types of decals and firing instructions, otherwise call John (the owner) I have found him very helpful.


No..... not likely any will also apply them for you here, it is a very seperate process....you will have to outsource to a potter or look overseas (China probably) to find a manufacturer with that kind of added service.



Mudslinger Ceramics :   www.mudslingerceramics.net


'Don't worry about your originality. You couldn't get rid of it even if you wanted to.

It will stick with you and show up for better or for worse in spite of all you or anyone else can do.'

                                                                              - Robert Henri

#3 Stephen



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Posted 08 July 2013 - 10:05 AM

I would suggest going to etsy.com and searching 'decal mugs' and you will find a group of folks that do this. Most probably do it with pre-fired/finished pieces but at least a few look like they make the pieces as well. This one :




throws the pieces and a fellow potter might be better able to adapt to the work flow than a company or person that puts pictures on already glazed pots.


Good luck with your project.  

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: decoration, product manufacture, decals, stoneware, porcelain, digital decals, dinnerware, tableware, food safety, design template

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