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Posts posted by Roberta12

  1. The couple of shops I have been in here in Colorado are more in line with Callie's description.  Clean, well run, helpful staff.  Many people over 50 are looking for some help with sleep issues, pain, anxiety, etc.  Shops are aware that is part of their customer base.   What Callie said about having a conversation with the owner is what I did with yarn bowls.  I met with several knitting groups and asked what they would like in a yarn bowl.  I got lots of great feedback and designed my bowls accordingly.  It's a strategy that worked for me.



  2. I have a table top North Star slab roller.  Two rollers.  I bought it 4 years ago and I have to say it has more than paid for itself.  If I were to purchase again I would get a larger one.  I bought the 16 inch because of space considerations.  I would get the 24 in if I were to do it again.    If you do very much handbuilding at all, you will love having a slab roller.  


  3. 12 minutes ago, Rae Reich said:

    I visited a glass blowers' shop and picked up some pretty fallen blobs. I was warned that they would very likely shatter at some future time because they had not been put through the final long soaking heat (don't remember the term) that all manipulated glass needs to maintain integrity. Perhaps pots fired with glass inclusions would also need a final "cure"? Don't know what effect that might have on the glazes. 

    I think that is called annealing?  a long slow cool  to strengthen the glass.  I hadn't really thought about that, but when you glaze fire with the glass in the pot, the temp is much higher than what you would use for glass work.  But what if you put the glass pieces in an already glazed piece and just took it up to glass temps and did a slow cool?  Glass temp would be around 1400 or so.  Hmmm  food for thought!  And Nancy Lee, I think all potters LOVE a good experiment.  Maybe this could be yours, even if you didn't sell them, you could just do it to scratch that curiosity itch! 

  4. 8 hours ago, Stephen said:

    Ya know I've posted this before. I really don't mean to be lecturing but this really is the truth.

    One of my relatives worked at the largest art glass manufacturer and she told me it was so hard for them to convince people not to fire glass and pottery together. It's not a matter of if it will eventually separate and fail it is just a question of when. That means at some point whatever you put together will fail and if it does so in a dangerous way someone will get hurt. Nothing will change that, glass and pottery are not compatible long term.

    It's a lovely effect, but I stopped doing it because I would occasionally get a shard of glass that would pop loose.  I just didn't want to risk harm to a customer.  And no matter how many times we give the warning about not being food safe, a pot could always be used for just that purpose.  

  5. Nancylee, you can put the glass inside a bowl or even a shallow piece, and it will melt.  Yes, you can do it during the glaze firing.  I would glaze the bowl, and then put the frit or pieces of glass inside the bowl. Then fire to cone 5.   These bowls will not be food safe because of the cracks in the glass, but they are lovely trinket dishes.  Does that help?


  6. 18 hours ago, Stephen said:

    ya know I'm sure there will be some sort of national clearing house of tax rates and eCommerce sites will have to tie it together to continue to get business. Will be disruptive at first maybe but my guess it will smooth out with either a tie to your processor or some good sites to run your sales data through for a report and an API lookup for the shopping cart. Washington with its destination based tax is pretty similar in that you literally have to separate every county on your sales tax report.  Square made it easy for us even though we had a number of counties to report on.

    At a gathering last night, we were having this conversation.  One person pointed out that Square will do this for us.  Hopefully so.


  7. 2 hours ago, preeta said:

    oh thanks Roberta. I'll contact Adrienne on IG. I have a base white ts but i dont have mason stain recipes. ooh i am so excited. i just IGed another potter who has tried both, and he said he uses TS so he does not glaze the outside of his mugs. he lightly burnishes. i am going to try that myself. 

    in a couple of weeks i am going to make some RedArt TS. and see if it turns shiny.  or what happens. 

    i saw another artist who uses pastel colours stretch her underglazes with TS. hmmm!!!



    the only thing I noticed about the cups that had TS on the exterior is that the rims were not pleasant against the skin.  If I were to do that, I would dip the rim in clear or something.  I am all about the smooth! 

  8. I was at a workshop last week and was introduced to terra sig for the first time.  The instructor uses it on bone dry clay, colored with mason stains, to add color to the underside of her work.  Her name is Adrienne Eliades and is very approachable.  Preeta, if you are interested I can send you her contact info and the TS recipe that we used.  She is also on IG and her handle is @bugaboo_eyes.  You can check out her feed to see her colors.  We were using bright mason stained TS.  Some people burnished and some did not.  It can add another dimension to your work.  

    She said that she uses red art ts on lowfire clay.  Not sure if it has other uses as well.


  9. On ‎6‎/‎22‎/‎2018 at 11:59 AM, neilestrick said:

    It will be interesting to see if they put dollar minimums, or transaction minimums, on those who hav to collect sales tax. Like you only have to deal with it if you sell over $100,000 worth of materials or have 100 or mare transactions. Otherwise it would be impossible for small businesses to handle. I certainly don't have the time to calculate sales tax for everything I ship out of state, or to pay that sales tax. Currently, just from doing art fairs, I have to deal with 8 states. That's not too bad, because I know the sales tax rate for each show. But I sell kilns all over the country, and if I have to figure out the sales tax for each person's town that takes some time. And it takes forever to fill out applications to obtain a sales tax license.

    Here's my solution: A national online sales tax rate, say 5%. Everyone charges it on every online or interstate sale, and pays it as part of their regular sales tax payments in the state where their business is located, not in the location of the purchaser. It would be easy for everyone to deal with because it wouldn't require making payments to 50 different states.

    Brilliant.  Would you consider running for President next election??  Love the flat tax idea!

  10. Helmsalee, Neil will have the absolute best information for you when he sees your post.  I bought a smaller L&L 5.5 years ago.  Because we were putting it in new construction, because we had to upgrade our electrical and because the electrical inspector didn't really know much about kilns, he insisted we hardwire the kiln. So we did.  Pro....when the insurance person came out to inspect the new structure and the kiln he said "Oh, great!  It's hardwired.  That is much safer!"  and I had no problem getting insurance coverage on my business equipment.  Con....because it is hardwired, it is a bit more challenging to drop that front panel down to access the internal workings.  However, your kiln is a front loader and maybe your control panel is on the side or something?? Anyway, Thought I would share.  I really do like my L&L.  Great customer service.



  11. Newbie, I agree with all here.  If you want to be part of the process without taking classes, find a Paint your own Pottery studio.  It would not be porcelain, but you would be able to find white bodied pieces.  It would not be high or mid fire, but you can find many lovely colors in the low fire glazes.  However, with that being said, from the questions you were asking, I think you might enjoy (become addicted) to clay like the rest of us here!!  So a 6 week intro to pottery class might be a consideration!  Good luck.



  12. Three years ago David Taylor of David Taylor Quilts presented an afternoon workshop on asking or paying for permission to use someone's photo for your work. He also discussed the taking of photos of certain things then selling those photos (photographers) such as photos of objects that have someone's name on them or certain business signs or hot air balloons with advertising on them (list goes on and on)  His advice was if in doubt, ask.  In his case, he uses photos as the basis of his quilts.  He always contacts the photographer and asks to buy it or to give a percentage of the sale of the quilt to the photographer.  Many times they simply give permission to use the photo, but he stressed the importance of always being above board and making contact.  Many of the younger photographers in the group were surprised by that.  I feel that our constantly changing visual world with a camera (phone) in everyone's hand has opened doors none of us expected.  I too, have had people ask permission to take photos of my work.  I will remember to ask if they are a potter!!  


  13. 1 hour ago, clay lover said:

    common practice here . An instructor using a picture off Pinterest of someone else's piece to advertise their own class , sort of cheezy and misleading, but, whatever...The public doesn't know the difference.


    But don't  you think that is an integrity issue??  Or am I just being an ol' fuddy duddy? :huh:

  14. I am rather surprised by this whole thread, although I should not be.  It seems to be a matter of course to find an easy way to look good or make a buck.  I have worked a number of jobs in my adult and pre adult life, but I really don't think any of them were as complicated and layered as being a potter and marketing and selling work.  Rather than promote the artists at the sale, the organizer seemed to be looking for a way to get customers in the door.  So that either speaks to the poor quality of the vendors or the ignorance of the organizer.  Ignorance of quality and appropriate marketing and/or ignorance of the craft that person was supposedly marketing. 

    Min, I am glad  you at least got your photo removed and hopefully that person learned something, something about marketing and promotion.  Like Callie pointed out, if I were a vendor at the sale, I would be MAD to think that the organizer didn't use photos of actual participants.  It speaks to a low quality event.  


  15. 14 hours ago, terrim8 said:

    I think picking a name for an item to put it on Etsy is difficult.  - eg. white speckled lamp with holes. 

    Anyone else have this problem?


    Terri, I think they look very contemporary.  That  could be a word for your description??


  16. Great thread!  I can identify with so many voices here.  I started mixing my glazes almost 6 years ago, with little understanding of the chemistry, simply following a recipe.  Further into the journey I started investigating the relationship between clay, glaze, firing....then found and continue to work on finding my "voice" and have enjoyed that!   Like Curt pointed out, then your market (fanbase) starts expecting a certain aesthetic from you.  I had an order for a bowl that a customer had purchased 3 years ago.  I still use those glazes, but I did let her know that the outcome might not exactly match the previous bowl.  And it didn't.  Close, yes, but not a match.   And yes, I am an experimenter.  Whether it is with surface decoration or glaze or form or whatever.  Sometimes I just have to get it out of my system before I can move on!! 

    So I guess my process is to look for colors that I visualize on my pots, mix up a BUNCH of test batches and choose one that suits. Then work on seeing if it will "fit" different clay bodies and how does it layer.  (last year the hunt was on for just the right blue) (This year might be a transparent olive green)  

    I can also identify with Joseph's comment about making and selling more pots and using fewer glazes.  I am there as well.  I did that last year and it made my glazing process more streamlined.  

    Such a timely thread.  I came in the house for a bite of lunch, and yes, I am mixing glazes, and making decisions about what to do with NUMEROUS test batches o glaze that are in NUMEROUS containers and taking up space!!!! 


  17. I have a homemade spray booth.  I put newspaper on the sides, a filter on the opening in front of the fan, and spray away.  The excess glaze on the newspaper will dry out and turn into globs, fall off the paper and become powder and flakes in the bottom of the booth.  Since I use a lot of clear glaze do you all think it would be ok to take the uncontaminated (as in just the clear) glaze globs and powder and put them back into the bucket of wet glaze??  I have been saving covered pails of it....   And yes, I use a respirator!!!:D


  18. 22 minutes ago, LeeU said:

    I am befuddled. So, I am seeking input on the best ways to market and display items that are multi-purpose. Example: my Shop will have Collections....Tea Light Holders, Catchall, Incense Burners. When I make a piece, it has a primary purpose--let's say as a catchall. But it also holds a tea light beautifully, plus looks great as a base for an incense cone. For now the Shop is not published-it is "hidden" as I am still organizing and filling it. 

    What I have been doing is putting the catchall in the Catchall Collection , with thumbnails that show the multiple uses such as a jewelry dish, with a tea light etc. Then I am  putting the same array in the Tea Light Collection and the Incense Burners Collection. I am wondering if I should add one more Collection---a Multi Purpose or Multi Taskers Collection, and put such items in there as well? 

    One of my selling points is that many of my pieces are attractive for their versatility, so I want to be sure that people can find what they may be looking for, or can come across items in various locations to give them ideas.  If I just put the catchall in the Catchalls Collection, I suspect I would be missing that opportunity, but I don't have any experience with how people "shop' online, or how it works when people know what they are looking for vs. general looking around.  Any feedback regarding the addition of a Multi Taskers addition to my Collections?

    This is just a thought Lee, but I wonder if you should call your catchall's ring dishes.  Or something specific.  Then in the description, you could use the word catchall or give examples of uses for that pot??  It's hard to know what will grab a customer's attention.



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