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Rostov enamels

Rostov enamels today are very popular in Russia. During your tour around the country you can find beautiful earrings, brooches, necklaces, boxes with miniature paintings on enamel. This art is popular since the 17th century.


Originally enamels were used to decorate church utensils and icons. Enamels were produced in several Russian towns but this art flourished in Rostov. In the 17th century the town became a spiritual center of the region; many pilgrims came to visit Rostov churches and shrines of local saints. At that time local masters started to produce painted enamels for religious items and icons with enamel paintings were sold to numerous visitors of the town.

To make an enamel miniature a master first covers silver or copper plate with white enamel, draw the outline of the composition and then fire the object. To achieve the desired color one has to add metal salts. Thus gold will give the enamel ruby shade, the addition of cobalt will make it blue and copper will add green color. Before miniature painting is finished the object is fired many times (up to seven) as different paints have different melting temperature.

The art of Rostov enamels didn't die in the 20th century and is widely spread till now.. You can learn about enamel miniatures during your tour to Rostov which is a very picturesque town of the Golden Ring. You can also find Rostov enamels during your Moscow tour visiting Izmailovo souvenir market or a local jewelry shop in the city center
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