Creative Applications

Creative Applications Décor accessories

Tables, flower planters and lamps can all benefit from the exceptional finish of enamel. Colourful, bright and imaginative, for objects destined to make everyday life more attractive as they last a lifetime.

Enamel is an obvious finish for domestic appliances, boilers, baths, industrial panels and so on. But its aesthetic and functional properties also make enamel an ideal finish for lighter, more flexible and – why not? – amusing objects, such as tables, flower planters and lamps. What’s more, we tend to forget that enamel was first used, many centuries ago, for great artistic applications. And even today many great artists apply their creativity to demonstrating the possibilities and potential of enamel and enamel claddings and dressings.
When we say tables, we are talking about the ones designed for use in both offices and bars, individual tables and meeting tables or desks. Whatever type of table it is applied to, enamel offers advantages that range from resistance and durability to good looks: the colours look and stay bright, regardless of whether you choose light-hearted or severe ones; they are easy to adapt to the colour scheme in the room and the rest of the furniture, whether classical or modern, made of wood or steel. And it also offers one advantage that no table made of any other material can: when a table is made of steel, you can use those colourful little magnets to hold your reminder notes in place.

At the moment, most enamelled bar tables are made for cruise liners, as they are so resistant to the damp, salty sea air. The tops are usually decorated with serigraphy, as the material enables any image or colour to be reproduced: that is what also makes them so suitable both for the little bars in historical cities that attract so many tourists and for larger licensed premises. Wherever you put them, they inject that certain dose of liveliness, fun and if you like also irony that can improve the quality of our everyday lives.
We have already discussed the advantages of using vitreous enamel for street furniture. One more application – which once again combines this material’s great good looks with its functionalism – is that of cladding flower planters with enamel, ensuring that their bright colours will stand up to the corrosion of continuous watering and also of atmospheric agents when placed outdoors.
And while we are about looking at new and revived surfaces suitable for enamel, which is also a lesson in putting some beauty and zest back into the houses and buildings we inhabit every day, why not also take a look at lamps? Enamel is equally at home on flat old models with their lacy trimmings and on decisively modern design statements, which only stand to gain from this material’s sparklingly bright colours. And let’s not forget, again, that enamel is not just an industrial product: it has a venerable artistic heritage and such enormous potential for development that it is really a pity to miss out on it and fail to tell possible users how many chances they have to surround themselves
with new, original, elegant, quality objects that cater for their desires. Isn’t that also part of what it takes to live better lives?

Enamel coating – Functional Characteristics
Characteristic Properties References
Cleanability Vitreous enamel can be easily cleaned. Generally a damp sponge is all it takes to wipe away any traces of dirt. NF A 92-032
Hygiene The well-established qualities of enamel that derive from its vitreous nature and range from its hardness to its porosity-free compactness, offers a guarantee of hygiene.
Vitreous enamel does not allow bacteria to proliferate or fungus and mould to take hold.
Bacteriological survey conducted by the Modena Hospital Institutes
Chemical resistance Properties References
Weathering resistance Vitreous enamel resists to the attack of severe atmospheric agents EN 14483-1
ISO 2722
EN 14431
Resistance to salty atmosphere Vitreous enamel is a protection of the metal substrate and prevents efficaciously its corrosion EN ISO 9227
Mechanical resistance Properties References
Adherence The enamel cladding must adhere to the steel support UNI 8883
EN 10209 Annex D
Hardness 5 -7 Mohs Scale An enamel cladding is hard and does not chip easily EN 101
Abrasion Because it is a vitreous cladding, vitreous enamel does not abrade easily, even after a long time UNI 7233
Scratch Resistance Vitreous enamel is not scratched by normal tools EN ISO 15695
Shock Resistance Only quite significant shocks may chip enamel. As a general rule, a good enamel should have no surface damage whose Ø is greater than 2 mm 24 hours after a shock of 20 N ISO 4532
Resistance to fire Incombustible ISO 1182



The International Enamellers Institute
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The International Enamellers Institute (IEI) Viale Vincenzo Lancetti, 43 20158 Milano - Italy
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