Enamel Jewellery

Enamels have long been used to decorate the surface of metal objects, originally as a substitute for the more costly process of inlaying with precious or semiprecious stones but later as a decorative medium in their own right. Whereas paint on metal has a short life and is overshadowed by the brilliance of the polished metal, enamelling gives the metal a durable decorative finish. 

Enamel work was particularly popular in Victorian and Edwardian jewellery since the introduction of Guilloché (or guilloche) which is a decorative technique in which a very precise, intricate and repetitive pattern is mechanically engraved into an underlying material via engine turning, which uses a machine of the same name. This mechanical technique improved on more time-consuming designs achieved by hand and allowed for greater delicacy and precision the work carried out by the craftsperson.