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Information @ a Glance

General

  • Bone china is a type of porcelain body in which calcined ox bone (bone ash) is a major constituent.

  • It is characterised by high whiteness, translucency and strength.

  • It is stronger than hard-paste porcelain and easier to manufacture.

  • Its ivory white appearance is created by adding bone ash to the ingredients for hard-paste porcelain.

  • Bone china is the toughest of porcelains and does indeed contain bones. Bone ash makes up the greatest part of the formula for bone china, with the balance of the formula containing kaolin and petuntse.

  • Strength is provided by the fusion of body ingredients during firing. This unique English pottery body is made from the following: 50% animal bone, 25% china clay, 25% china stone. First or biscuit firing 1200 C - 1300 C. Second or glost firing 1050 C - 1100 C.

Process

  • Making bone china involves several steps. The clays and bone ash must be mixed together with water, then the slurry is formed into large cylinders that are sliced and formed with plaster molds into dishes, bowls, cups and other pieces. The pieces are taken from the molds, given a rough cleaning to remove the excess clay and any lumps or other imperfections, then fired in a kiln at about 2,300° Fahrenheit (1,260° Celsius).

  • After being fired, the pieces are polished, re-heated, glazed, then fired again to set the glaze. Glazed pieces are then decorated, either by a machine or by hand. They are then re-fired to set the decorations and inspected. Imperfect pieces may be destroyed or sold as "seconds." The pieces are then packaged and sent to retail stores.

  • Creating bone china entails an involved series of steps carried out by a number of highly skilled individuals and some really impressive machinery.

  • There are four main processes involved in creating china: Clay making, Mold making, Glazing, Decorating.

Market

  • Bone china comes in a variety of designs, so the homeowner has an array of choices. Almost every decor imaginable is applied to bone china. Some designs may include flowers, fruit, geometric designs, lacy swirls, animals, or even holiday motifs.

  • Many homeowners purchase bone china deliberately to match with their kitchen or dining room décor, while some prefer the classic look of the plain white piece with a ring of gold or platinum at the edge.

  • The new bone china is about 25 percent more expensive than the ordinary porcelain made here while depending on the market the new product could be 25 to 30 percent cheaper than genuine bone china.

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