I'm relieved to say that china paints have once again saved my butt. I had promised a platter with a Trillium design to a local Wildlife Festival and had painted a half dozen of them. When they came out of the kiln, however, they were disappointing. The leaves were alright, the platters were fine, but the flowers just hadn't any 'poomf'. I looked at them for a day or two, trying to convince myself they would do, but it wasn't working. So yesterday I got out the china paints, mixed up a tiny bit of black, and added thin black outlines to the flowers. After re-firing to cone 010, they were much improved!
I bought these china paints many years ago. I only have the basic colours, but they are endlessly mixable and keep forever. I just mix a wee bit of the powder with a drop of mineral oil, and they are ready to go. I'm not skilled enough to paint whole pieces in china paints, and anyway that is a very different medium from pottery, but I can fix the odd piece. I once had to paint back in all the soft rose colour that had burned out in a batch of mugs with pink hearts on them - a lot less work than re-making them, and much quicker.
So now I can bring the Wildlife Festival their platters for their Silent Auction this weekend. Not sure why I am doing this, an ego thing, I guess. I also made a very fine bookmark with info about my pottery and garden and had 1000 of them printed so I'll bring some of them as well. Never hurts to advertise!