Introduction: Repairing and Restoring Chipped, Pottery, China, Ceramic or Figurine

About: Lakeside Pottery, a nationally recognized Ceramic and Sculpture Repair and Restoration studio, established in 2001 as a ceramic art and pottery teaching facility. We are also craft Kintsugi / Kintsukuroi Japan…

Cementing, filling and preparing surface for painting of chipped pottery, ceramic or china vessels.




Step 1: What Will You Need - Cementing Ceramic Pieces

1. Two-part clear 5 minutes PC Clear epoxy (where to purchase)

2. Wooden stick, paper clip or a pin-tool

3. A container with pvc pebbles, rice or sand

4. Razor blade

5. Denatured or 91% Alcohol

6. Paper pad to mix Epoxy on

7. Good light

8. Protective eyewear

IMPORTANT: Ceramic restoration materials are not food safe, liquid or heat proof (over 190 degree F) and repaired items should not be used on cooking or food serving ware more...

Step 2: Cementing Ceramic Pieces Steps

  1. Clean all surfaces and possible old glues (see how to remove old adhesive lesson)
  2. Place even amounts of 5-minutes clear epoxy (where to purchase) on a paper or cardboard pad.
  3. Mix epoxy well with a pin tool, paper clip or a wooden stick.
  4. Apply epoxy mix to one side using a pintool or a wooden stick.
  5. Use only enough adhesive to cover the edge. Too little will leave gaps, resulting in a weak repair.
  6. Place broken piece over the epoxy. Important: You have only about 60-90 seconds from start of epoxy mixing to complete the broken piece permanent placement before the epoxy becomes gummy and not workable.
  7. Quickly join the pieces together while applying light pressure to squeeze extra epoxy out. You only have about 60–90 seconds from start of epoxy mixing to placement before the epoxy becomes gummy and unworkable. Do not wipe off the squeezed off epoxy to avoid smearing.
  8. If your item is broken to more than a couple of pieces, plan the attachment sequence to avoid being left with a final piece that cannot be easily attached or fit in. Numbering the pieces after a dry run is a good idea and will assist in the actual implementation.
  9. Verify that pieces can stay steady during the cure period (let it cure at 75 degrees F or warmer).

Step 3: Cementing Subsequent Pieces

  1. Verify fit with next piece. Immediately after applying the previous piece, if epoxy squeezed out into the next piece space, clean it with the pin tool and alcohol to insure it will not interfere with subsequent pieces proper fit.
  2. Apply epoxy.
  3. Spread epoxy.
  4. Push hard to squeeze out epoxy.
  5. Apply next pieces.
  6. Wait 15-20 minutes before addressing the other side of the platter.

Step 4: Cementing Chips in Rear of Platter

  1. Apply epoxy.
  2. Place pieces.
  3. Wait 1-2 hours before clearing squeezed epoxy.
  4. Small pieces are not used and can be thrown away.

Step 5: Removing Excess Cured Epoxy

  1. Bend blade for better access clearing unwanted cured epoxy. Warning - wear protective eyewear
  2. Let the epoxy cure for 60 or more minutes before removing excess cured epoxy with a blade.
  3. Ready for filler.

Step 6: What You Will Need - Filling and Sanding for a Seamless Surface

1. Two parts Epoxy filler PC-11 (where to purchase)

2. Dremel with EZ lock sanding disc 120 grit

3. 220 grit sand paper

3. 400 grit sand paper

4. Rag

5. Mini Spatula

6. Paper pad to mix Epoxy on

7. Denatured or 91% Alcohol

IMPORTANT: Ceramic restoration materials are not food safe, liquid or heat proof (over 190 degree F) and repaired items should not be used on cooking or food serving ware more...

Step 7: Filling Repair Lines and Missing Chips

  1. Wipe all surfaces with a 91% alcohol to remove dust and hand oils prior to applying filler epoxy.
  2. Mix even parts of PC-11 epoxy filler. For ease of application, work in room temperature of 75 degrees F or warmer. We place the PC-11 in a small heater and keep it at 100 degrees F.
  3. Apply thin layer of filler while pushing in to fill cracks and missing fragments.
  4. Allow filler epoxy to cure for 12-24 hours (or longer) at a temperature of 75 degrees F or warmer. We place our filled projects in a 140 degrees F oven over night.
  5. Placing under a lamp is another good option to optimize hardness for better sanding performance. Place at least 12" away from repair item to avoid overheating.

Step 8: Sanding Cured Filler Using Dremel

  1. Use Dremel EZ lock sanding disc 120 grit for sanding.
  2. Use low speed to avoid burn marks and apply light pressure. Leave the last 10% or so for sanding by hand.
    Warning - wear protective eyewear.
  3. If Dremel is not available, sanding the whole job by hand (using grit 220 sandpaper) will take longer but will yield the same results.
  4. Repeat process on platter's other side.
  5. Blow or wipe dust away.

Step 9: Second Sanding Phase

  1. Continue sanding by hand using grit 220.
  2. Apply long strokes for accurate surface continuity If upon inspection, missed cracks are found, repeat the steps above for the selected areas.
  3. Use 91% alcohol for clean up

Step 10: Fine Filling

  1. After the first round of sanding, second finer filling is required using a small sepulcher tool.
  2. Same filler (PC-11) is used for second application.
  3. Mix well the epoxy filler two even parts.
  4. For seamless surface fill the defects with PC-11 lightly.
  5. Wait for filler second layer to cure in a warm room (see more above) before sanding

Step 11: Fine Sanding and Polishing

  1. Sand second layer by hand with long strokes using grit 220, then grit 400 and finish with grit 3600 (where to purchase). It may be necessary to apply a third or forth layer if UV / light close inspection reveals more surface defects.
  2. Wipe with alcohol for better paint bond

Step 12: Painting

  1. Mix acrylic paints to match background off-white color.
  2. Airbrush over the repair line and taper off for smooth color integration to original background glaze.
  3. Painting over the repair line will erase painting details which will be replenished later.
  4. Wait a day or two for the acrylic paint to dry well and apply thin layer of cold glaze to protect the applied the painted areas.
  5. Mix acrylic paints to match to missing colors details.
  6. Use fine brushes to apply colors.
  7. For translucent effect, paint several coats of thinned paints.
  8. In this example, apply black color last.

Painting theory tutorial - seamless colors

Step 13: Glazing

  1. Wait for painting to properly dry (a couple of days) and airbrush clear glaze.
  2. Second layer of clear glaze may be required. Sand surface with a 3200 grit micro-mesh (after waiting a day or two for 1st layer curing), wipe dust off and reapply cold glaze.
  3. Platter ready for shipment.

Step 14: KINTSUGI ART - Repairing Pottery With Gold | How Is It Made: 22 Minutes Video

Step 15: More Ceramic and Sculpture Repair Lessons

Step 16: See Step by Step Video Showing Pottery Repair

Clay Contest 2016

Participated in the
Clay Contest 2016