Meenakari is an art which was introduced in India by Mughals. Its the also called "Enamelling", is the art of decorating a metal surface by fusing mineral substances. The process is often applied to Kundan, Gemstones with a layer of Gold-foil between the stones.
Enamelling is an old and widely adopted technique. The ancient Enamel was used to decorate glass vessels during the Roman period. The Meenakar ( Enameller) applies colours, beginning with most capable of resisting fire, White is normally applied first followed by Red, Blue And Green. And the colour is applied in the form of Enamel Dust, store in the water. Each colour is applied individually.
The heat of the furnace has set between 750 and 850 degC. Then spread to make jewellery or any decorating items which are a very lengthy process but its outlook is really rich and awesome. Later its simplify with some colours and other techniques because the real Meenakari was too expensive due to stud diamonds, Gemstones, real Kundans and Gold-Foil, so people want to recreate it with applying some creativity.
The Traditional Mughal colours like Red, Green and White dominating enamelling from Jaipur, India. The Rich Ruby red colour used here is highly gorgeous.
Raja Man Singh of Amber brought master Enamellers from Lahore to Jaipur, Rajasthan in 16th century. Jaipur is now the centre of traditional Menakari production in India.
The cost of precious metals and stones imposes a high price on Meenakari work, making it a luxury item. Traditional Meenakri Jewellery and decorative items demand high value, so mostly these are now brought for Brides in India.
Here, I have recreated a Mirror Decoration which gave me a Meenakari look with some craft materials. The outcome is just beyond my imagination, and I am pretty much happy with the result. Its give rich look to the entire ambience of my place. I personally recreate this look with my own ideas, hope you will love this.
This idea often struck into my mind, but I couldn't make it apply. But when this competition was flashed out I thought I should try , though it was too late. Anyway guys, let move to the project and create a Rich and heavy royal look Mirror.
1. Glass Mirror ( Amazon )
2.Marble / Ceramic Powder ( Amazon )
3. Fevicol MR ( Amazon )
4. Acrylic Colour ( Amazon )
5. Gold Acrylic Colour ( Amazon )
6. Gift Wrapping Plastic sheet ( Amazon )
7. Cello Tape ( Amazon )
8. Masking Tape ( Amazon )
9.Carbon Paper ( Amazon )
10. Temporary Marker ( Amazon )
11. A3 size Paper ( Amazon )
12. Pencil ( Amazon )
13. Eraser ( Amazon )
14. Craft Glue ( Amazon )
15. Glass Colours ( Amazon )
16. Glass Liner ( Amazon )
17.Kundans ( Amazon )
18. Painting Brush ( Amazon )
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Step 1: Make the Stencil
To make this project, first, you need a big size mirror because you can't feature out each design if you take small size mirror. And obviously it depends on your designs. As I have planned to make a Royal Toran ( welcome gate), I took a mirror of size 14" x 18".
Then I managed to left some equal inches from each side because I wanted to give it a beautiful frame. For the painting part, I have taken an A3 size drawing paper and have drawn the design over it. First I divided the paper into two parts, one for the KHAMBA (POLE) and another half for the upper part of TORAN (GATE).
I have kept 5.2c.m. gap from each side as I wanted the width of the Pole should be 5.2c.m. And I also wanted some more designs on the lower and upper part with width 6c.m.
To make the upper gate design uniform and symmetric. I have split the section into the number of small sections with and each has a gap of 2c.m.Then I did a pattern as shown in the image.
To make the Royal Poles, I have drawn some vertical lines along with 3 steps just under the vertical pillars which are known as the base of the poles.
To feature out each design, I have marked 0.4 c.m. in between each design.
Now I have drawn some basic Meenakri pattens in between the lines Likes Lotus, Flower petals, some geometrical patterns, and some beautiful curved lines. And completed my drawing.
Please go through the images, so that you can get a better description.
1. If you are not good at drawing, do not worry just take a print out of your desired size.
2. Keep the drawing neat and don't draw a clumsy pattern.
3. If you are too good with your hand on drawing then you can draw the pattern directly on the mirror with the help of a temporary marker. Just remember when you are working with directly, you should start your drawing from the upside of the mirror to the downside of the mirror. Otherwise, you will quickly get a messy look.
4. The gap between each design should be equal, otherwise, it will not give an appropriate look.
Step 2: TRANSFER THE IMAGE TO THE MIRROR
To transfer the drawing to the mirror, I have spread some blue carbon paper over the mirror, then placed the A3 size paper exactly where I wanted the design to print to be. And now fixed the paper properly with masking tape.
Now first with the help of a pencil draw the upper part of the gate only.
When you have done with the upper part, slightly remove the tape and check to weather its coming prominent or not, if some part you are not finding a good copy then stick the paper and draw it further.
I personally, cut the paper into two parts, when the upper part is done, then I simply stick the lower part of the paper and transferred the remaining drawing.
1. Do not go here and there while transferring the drawing, otherwise, you can't recognize which part you left and which one covered.
2. While you are going to check transfer, don't remove all the four sides. Just remove the portion you want to check. Otherwise, you can not place the paper in the exact position.
3. If you find any lines which are not properly showing on the mirror, just use a temporary marker and make it prominent.
4. It's ok if you manage to transfer the image entirely. No need to cut each time. Only you need to check before removing the tapes from all side of the glass mirror.
Step 3: TEXTURE PEASTE PREPARATION
This is the most important step , how to make the texture paste. Let it simplify with some materials and steps.
First, to make this paste, you need a Marble powder or Ceramic powder, Fevicol MR ( white glue ), Crome yellow Acrylic colour, Acrylic gold colour and water.
Take a bowl. Add one tablespoon water, two tablespoons of Fevicol MR, three to four tablespoon of Marble powder.
Means the ratio of water: glue: marble-powder should be like 1:2:4
Add two tablespoon of yellow acrylic colour and a single spoon of golden acrylic colour.
Then mix it well with the help of a popsicle stick. Mix it properly, because some times when you have not to mix it properly, It left some slump.
1. The ratio may vary in case of consistency of Fevicole MR. because sometimes we store it in our home for a long time after using, in that case, you may need some extra amount of water.
2. Do not use much water, because we need a paste which is thick. Otherwise, it will spread over the area. It's just like a cake batter.
3. Better give a less amount of water, if you find it hard to mix then just add a few drops, not so much.
4. Give an adequate quantity of Yellow colour. Because less the Yellow colour gives a whitish colour paste which is not required for this project.
Step 4: CONE MAKING PROCEDURE
Now to make a cone, you need a gift wrapping plastic sheet which is not so thin. First, give it a conical shape and fix quickly with the help of cello tape. Then give the cone more layers and fix it with the tape.
Now pour the paste smoothly to the cone, just keep in mind you should not fill the cone fully. You just need to fill the cone half not more than that.
Then sealed the cone with the help of tapes.
I am sorry that I have used masking tape as I did not have cello tape, and its because it was raining so heavy in India that I could not take it from the market . But I strongly suggest using cello tape, because some times the masking tape get open when you have a tightly pack texture paste.
Step 5: APPLICATION OF TEXTURE-PASTE ON MIRROR
Cut the tip of the cone white help of scissors and gently squeeze the cone to make the texture paste out.
Move the mirror according to you convenient, and always do this process from inward to outward.
Follow the marked lines. And let the texture to be dried completely for a day at least.
Step 6: COLOUR APPLICATION ON UPPER PART
I want to recreate the look of Meenakari panting in Jaipur style, where you can find the most elegant colour i.e. Ruby red, which gives a rich look to the entire painting. So as I recreate the look in an affordable way, I have used glass colour of water base.
To create the look, I have chosen the shade of TOMATO RED which seriously has a vibrant look.
Now to create the Jaipur Meenakari painting, I need all two most basic colours like Blue and Green. For the flowers petals and Lotus part, I have put Tomato red colour and for the gate and other structural designs, I have given the shade of ULTRAMARINE BLUE and have also played with CRYSTAL GREEN colour where it was needed. Moreover, I have put the colours side by side with a contrast shade manner. Here I have used another shade of blue colour i.e. SEA BLUE. Please go through my images so that it will clear to you easily as I have tried to take each step photos.
1. Don't put the colour very near to the outline, because it has a chance to get over the marble texture line. To manage this while doing. Let the colour spread till the outlines and corner with the help of a toothpick.
2. Before applying the colour tube over the mirror, first, apply it over a napkin or cotton because it uses to have some air bubble while squeezing first.
3. If you are spreading with a toothpick, just remember do it quickly just after the colour application of that particular section. Do not apply toothpick later stage otherwise the colour will not give a crystal look over the mirror.
4. If you find a little more colour at a particular place, just take an earbud and dip into that section and remove the extra colours.
Step 7: REMOVAL OF AIR BUBBLE FROM COLOUR
To remove the bubble which you will have usually on the application of glass color, should remove through the toothpick. Just pop the bubble and clear the air, after the color application.
Step 8: COLOUR APPLICATION ON LOWER PART OF DESIGN
Just remember a trick, do not give dark shade at adjacent place. Try to give light shades around the dark shade, so that each colour will pop out easily with a colourful outlook. Now let the colour dry at least 3 to 4 hours.
Step 9: EMBROIDERY DESIGN PART
Now after the color dried, draw some embroidery patterns which itself has an elegant look. To do this process, I have used METALLIC GOLD-261 liner, I have done some liquid embroidery directly over the previous glass color with a free hand. Do not panic while doing with freehand, just plan the embroidery pattern before the start.
If you are not so much good with direct drawing you can skip this part with applying more Kundan stones.
Step 10: KUNDAN APPLICATION
Here I have taken only two kinds of Kundan. One has a round shape and another one just a shape of teardrop/petal.
And as I have taken some dark colour, so I love to keep the colour of Kundan light. So I have taken white crystal colour Kundan and yellowish crystal colour Kundan.
If you want to give it a more colourful look, you can place more colours of Kundan like blue, green, red and pink etc.
As the tradition says the Kundan should be embedded with Gold foils, I have recreated the look by applying gold 3d liner and cover just the outlines of each Kundan.
You can not imagine , what a look you will get after this step.
Remember to have patience while looking at this step, because it has a great chance to get the colour overlap on the Kundan stone and its very hard to remove the colour from the particular Kundan.
Sometimes you can remove it through earbud but many time it will give a messy outlook, so my advise if you find a difficult situation like this just keep it as it is, but try not to do it in a hurry mood.
Step 11: GOLD-COLOUR FILLING STEP
After drying the entire product, take a 000 number brush and take gold acrylic colour, then apply it carefully over the yellow marble paste. For this reason, I have the first mix some yellow and gold colour with the texture paste. So that if on this step you are left some corner parts even, it will not feature out easily to eyes.
You should have more patience while doing this step because a little absent mind can spoil your entire project. It's really hard to remove acrylic colour over glass colour. If you manage you can wipe it off quickly then its fine otherwise it will go worse. So while mistake happens, just try to remove it through an earbud not ever with your hand or fingertips.
Step 12: SIDE EMBROIDERY AND KUNDAN PLACING
Participated in the
Art Skills Challenge