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Dinnerware decals are an essential part of the design process for many ceramic artists and dinnerware manufacturers such as Lavish'd. These small, transferable images can add a personal touch to dinnerware and make it truly unique. But have you ever wondered how dinnerware decals are designed? Let's take a closer look.
First, let's define what a decal is. A decal is a transferable image or design that's applied to the surface of a piece of dinnerware. Decals can be made from various materials, including ceramic ink, glass, or even paper. Depending on the desired effect, they can be applied before or after the glazing process.
Now, let's dive into the design process. The first step in designing a dinnerware decal is to come up with a concept or idea. This could be anything from a simple pattern to a detailed image or scene. Some designers prefer sketching their ideas on paper, while others use digital tools to create mock-ups.
Once the concept is finalised, it's time to create the artwork. This can be done using several techniques, such as drawing, painting, or digital illustration. The artwork should be created at a high resolution to ensure it looks sharp and clear when printed onto the decal.
After the artwork is complete, it's time to prepare the decal file. This involves converting the artwork into a format that can be printed onto the decal. The decal file must be created at the correct size and resolution to ensure it fits the dinnerware piece and looks good when transferred.
Now comes the printing process. Decals can be printed using different methods, including screen printing, digital printing, and lithography. Screen printing is a popular method for creating dinnerware decals because it allows for precise, high-quality printing. During the screen-printing process, ink is applied to a mesh screen with a decal design stencil. The ink is then pressed through the stencil and onto the decal paper.
After the decals are printed, they need to be fired in a kiln to set the ink and make them transferable. The firing process can vary depending on the type of decal paper and ink used. Some decals require a low-temperature firing, while others must be fired at a higher temperature to achieve the desired effect.
Once the decals are fired, they can be applied to the dinnerware. This is typically done by soaking the decal in water for a few seconds to activate the adhesive, then carefully transferring it onto the surface of the dinnerware. The decal is then burnished to remove any air bubbles and ensure it adheres properly.
Finally, the dinnerware is fired again to set the decal and make it permanent. This firing process can also vary depending on the type of dinnerware and decal used.
So, there you have a brief overview of how dinnerware decals are designed. While the process may seem complex, it's essential for creating beautiful, personalised dinnerware that adds a special touch to any meal.