All posts tagged: clay

Little Lidded Jars

I’ve been making these cute little jars recently! I love the different handle style on these ones. They would be perfect for holding trinkets or sugar cubes, or bobby pins. Or loose leaf tea! The possibilities are endless. And they’re just so cute! They are about the size of an apple and fit comfortably in your palm. They are some of my favorite pieces to date. Some of them I wanted to make specifically into sugar and creamer sets, like these two pictured here. The sugar bowl has a sweet little catch for the sugar spoon, and the creamer has a teapot- like spout. This one has no handle and is very comfortable, but the mini teapot idea was so intriguing that I had to try another. I love it!! How could a creamer be any more adorable. I can’t wait to see these glazed! Advertisements

Glaze Making

One of my duties at the studio is to measure and combine the dry ingredients for glazes before hydrating them. The unfired glazes are almost never the same color as the finished product, but some of the ingredients are truly beautiful! Almost all the ingredients are a shade of white other than the colorants, although the textures vary widely- from powdered sugar(ferro frit) to sparkling white sand(spodumene)! The bright green and pink seen here are copper and cobalt carbonate, being mixed to make the color Variegated Blue. Isn’t chemistry cool!?

100 Mugs Challenge

I’ve been making a lot of mugs lately and they’ve been turning out really well! However they do all have a fairly similar look… a look that I like, but still, there isn’t much diversity. Thats why I was so excited when some members of my studio suggested a challenge for anyone interested to make 100 mugs! I want to try at least 20 new techniques if I can, which means I would have 5 mugs to practice each technique. I’m not sure of all the things I want to try, but some of them are faceting, slip trailing, and new handle making techniques. I can’t wait to get started tomorrow! Besides how fun and challenging it’ll be to come up with all these new forms, once they’re done, they’ll make a fantastic display for my booth! Today and tomorrow I’ll be checking out local farmers markets as potential venues to sell my work, and hopefully very soon I’ll be selling at them monthly, if not weekly. Wish me luck!

New Glazes

Glazing has always been one of my least favorites steps in pottery making. It can really make or break a piece, and its so unpredictable that I generally only use specific glazes that I know will turn out a certain way. When I do try out new glazes its with the knowledge that it could very well ruin the piece, so when I tried out this new glaze combination on this vase, I just had my fingers crossed that it would turn out ok! This was a decent pot before glazing, its fairly large and has a nice shape, and I thought the smooth surface would take this new glaze I’m trying out nicely. The glaze I wanted to use is called variegated blue, and though I had never used it before, the test tiles and student work using it all looked very nice. The color changes from a lovely yellow-y light green to deep blue when layered over a red glaze, and I thought i’d give it a try! SO BEAUTIFUL! This is probably one of my …

Mixing Bowls and Happy Accidents

I haven’t written much of anything recently because I’ve been insanely busy. I feel like I constantly am doing things, and yet always have a giant pile of more work that I need to get done! During this super busy time I’ve been making amazing progress with my pottery though. I can now make multiples with true ease, and today made this mixing bowl set on a whim- without even measuring!! They fit together perfectly in every way. Its truly thrilling to try something out and have it work fantastically. But not everything turns out how I planned- I wanted to make some cappuccino cups today, and not only did they turn out juuust a little too big, they also got overly dry while I was teaching a class- too dry to add any kind of handles to- and they ended up as a whole bunch of ice-cream bowls.  I still like them as ice-cream bowls though so no real harm done! My next workday will be yarn bowls forever, which was what I had …

WIP of the Week: Plant Hangers and Multiples!

Yesterday might have been one of my most productive days at the studio ever! Besides these AWESOME hanging planter pots, I also made 8 pitchers, 8 mugs, 9 chip’n’dips, 7 brie bakers, 7 yarn bowls, and a serving platter! And all in pretty close to matching sizes. Less than a year ago I wouldn’t have been able to make even 2 matching forms and now I’m doing 8 at a time! Tomorrow I’ll be putting handles on the mugs and brie bakers and cutting the yarn bowls. Handles are definitely not my strong point but I have to keep working on them to get there! I’ve also gotten better at trimming efficiently and consistently. I love intricate trimming, but for something like a yarn bowl it makes more sense to have clean, simple feet. And now for the best part- these great hanging planter pots!!! These are all pretty big, with probably close to a gallon of space inside them. They’ll hang upside down by macramé strings and I can just imagine them with long hanging …

WIP of the Week: Glazing Day!

Lots of glazing to do today!! I had tea bowls, candle plates, some brie bakers, and some large vase forms ready to be glazed. I’m continuing to test out newer glazes, and I’m finding some really gorgeous ones! I also want to try out painting with underglazes, and I left some large flat surfaces on my vases for just this purpose. I’m not sure what I’ll paint on them yet- it could be a pattern, or even a scene of some sort!  Bisque ware is so beautiful in its own way! In the corner here you can see my very first bisqued porcelain bowl!! I can’t wait to see how the glazes turn out on such a beautiful white surface. Thanks for reading!

Testing Garlic Roasters

The past few weeks I’ve been experimenting with lids. One of my very first lidded projects was to make these garlic roasters! I’d never roasted garlic before but my boyfriend had, and he suggested I try it out. They turned out really beautiful! My research about them revealed that they’re usually done in unglazed terra cotta, and soaked briefly in water before being used for roasting. The extra water that soaks into the terra cotta is supposed to help them roast the garlic. Since I’ve never used a garlic roaster before, and don’t have access to terra cotta, I thought I’d try a couple different glaze patterns and try them all to see which one works best. As you can see, I have one roaster that is entirely unglazed, one that is fully glazed, and one that is left unglazed on the inside only. Unfortunately the vent hole in the partially glazed roaster was blocked with glaze during the firing so I wasn’t able to test that one out today. Once it gets warm enough …

Whoops…

This week I had a tragedy. I had 2 full boxes (nearly 30 pieces) from the past couple weeks glazed, finished, priced, and ready to go into the shop. I parked in the parking lot of the shop and pulled the bigger box out of the car….and the handle of the cardboard box ripped off, crashing the whole thing to the ground. I saved only 2 pieces from this entire box. Even though it was heartbreaking, this is a good lesson to learn- theres absolutely nothing I can do about it now other than never use an unstable box ever again! My other box of work carried in a plastic bin survived just fine and is ready to be sold in the pottery shop. I’ll just have to remake the pieces I lost, and hopefully they’ll be even better the second time. Life goes on!

WIP of the week: Lids!

This week I started playing around with lids. I’ve made lids in the past, but they’re never quite the right size- in trying to make sure they’re not too big I almost always make them too small! So I’m going to be spending a lot of time this month practicing lids. These vessels aren’t for any specific purpose other than to make a lidded jar, so some of them have kind of weird shapes. I like to test out new shapes and ideas whenever I’m not making something for a specific purpose because, who knows, it could become a favorite! I want to eventually be ready to make lidded casseroles, honey pots, and tea pots. These two pots actually switched lids! The bigger lid ended up fitting on the smaller piece and the smaller lid is too small for the one its on. Once they’re fired I may switch them back to their original pairs but in this picture, the piece on the right has a perfectly fitting lid and that was pretty cool! I also made a …