Plique-A-Jour Pendants

Course Description

About this course

Here's an opportunity to explore the enameling technique plique-a-jour, which is French for "letting in daylight". It highlights the best feature of enamels, the combination of color and light, essentially resembling a miniature stained-glass window.

To achieve this effect, enamel is applied within hand pierced "cells". It is similar to cloisonné, but with no backing, so light can shine through the transparent or translucent enamel. Kelly will take students step-by-step through the entire process, demonstrating how to achieve the correct surface tension to suspend colored enamel powder as well as different ways to grind down the fired enamel to complete the piece.

This course is perfect for students looking to refine their saw piercing skills and broaden their enameling repertoire. Develop a clear understanding of the process while finishing copper sample and a silver pendant in class.

Meet the Instructor

Kelly Conroy

Kelly Jean Conroy graduated with a BFA in Art Education and painting from Syracuse University in 2005 and a MFA in Jewelry Metals from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth in 2013. She has taught metals and enameling at the Worcester Center for Crafts, and Jewelry I and II courses at UMass Dartmouth.  She currently teaches High School Metalsmithing at Lincoln Sudbury Regional High School in Sudbury, MA, as well as continuing education courses in Metals at Massachusetts College of Art and various classes at Metalwerx.

She works out of her studio in West Roxbury, MA and her art jewerly pieces focus on life cycles in nature and finding beauty in unique places. Her specialties are enameling, working with natural materials: carving bone, piercing mother of pearl, and casting.  She is included in Showcase 500 Rings by Lark Books, and is represented by Equinox Gallery in San Antonio, TX.  Her website is and her wearable work can be found at  To see Kelly's process, please visit her blog


Materials & Tools 

There is a $20 materials fee for this class, payable upon registration. It includes a piece of copper sheet for a sample, use of enamels and enameling supplies as well as a piece of mica required for the process.

Students should bring 
  • Several photocopies or drawings of basic designs to pierce in silver. If students want to prepare their metal in advance, please contact us for instructions.
  • 4/0 sawblades
  • 18 gauge fine silver sheet: 
    • We suggest a piece that is around 2" x 2" or smaller so that students can complete the project in class. Metalwerx is happy to order supplies for participants who don't already have the metal, but we need to know at least two weeks in advance. Please contact us for details.
    • Please note that sterling silver also works for this process, but students should raise the fine silver to the surface (depletion gilding), ideally before class to save time.



Materials Cost



Kelly Conroy


April 2 -3, 2016


10:00 AM -5:00 PM


2 days

Basic and above
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