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Diz

Knitting Bowls

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I am trying to please a couple friends by making them each a 'knitting bowl' which seem to be popular in our area.  However I am repeatedly having 2 problems with my bowls - warping during the slow drying and then sagging of the cut area during the glaze firing.  I do my cutting of the design when not quite leather hard and the cut channels are thin, yet the remaining design seems to warp out a bit. (I have tried supporting the open channel and also drying slowly upside down to keep the top edge stable.)   Then during the firing it sags so that the cut channel has a block in the channel.  My thrown pieces are not overly thick or thin and I fire these to cone 10 in a gas kiln.  Any ideas of what I should or should not do?

 

Perhaps if they were not such experienced knitters I could get away with giving them a less than perfect bowl - but that's not my style.

 

Thanks...again.

 

Diz

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Could you post a picture?  Two factors are working on this.  First, when you cut the channel for the yarn, you put a break in the side that allows it to relax (warp) during drying and firing.  Consider taking some gauze -- the roll type from the first aid kit -- and gently wrapping it around your bowl.  That could keep the flap created by the cut channel from warping on the outside.  Adjust as the pot goes from leatherhard to bone dry.  Also, do the cut later . . . after the sides have firmed up more than you are currently allowing them and use a really sharp knife so you don't put a lot of pressure on the walls . . . which could lead to them warping as the bowl dries.  Second, firing to cone 10 may make your clay (stoneware? porcelain?) a bit more susceptible to warping . . . given the structure of the wall has been weakened due to the cut channel.  The angle of the cut, the width of the cut, and many other factors can come into play here. 

 

Why not use an earthenware/low fire clay and fire them to 05/04?  A yarn bowl does not need to be water-tight, so using a less vitreous clay body will not change the functionality of the bowl.  Plus, you will get less warping at a lower temperature. 

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Once of my students makes a lot of yarn bowls, like dozens a month. The cutouts on hers hardly ever warp. She does 2 things to keep them stable The first is to leave the wall thicker than she normally would. The extra weight in the bowl also helps to keep it from moving around during use. She also doesn't remove the entire cutout right away. She leaves a small piece of the cutout area at the lip until it is nearly bone dry, to deep it from warping during drying. I think this also helps keep the stresses in the lip more or less consistent so it's less likely to move during firing, even if it didn't warp in drying. She cuts out that small section with a piece of a fine hacksaw blade when bone dry, them smooths it with water.

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Just unloaded a bunch this morning. I agree with throwing them thicker than usual, the ones in my attachment are from 2lb 12 oz of clay. I do the cut-outs straight after trimming the bowl and dry them upside down. Cut-outs done with a scalpel (one of my favorite tools), holes with drill bits. ^6, smooth white clay, shrinks 14= 15%

 

Min

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post-747-0-13105600-1380658018_thumb.png

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nice colors and design!  someone suggested that i make some for the larger skeins (?) of yarn since bowls only work for balls of yarn.  i cannot imagine that they bring in much money at a sale.  maybe i live in too urban an area and there are no knitters but my neighbor.

 

i once made some holders for incense before finding out the person who wanted them might go as high as $10 for a really nice one.  so i dunno.............

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nice colors and design!  someone suggested that i make some for the larger skeins (?) of yarn since bowls only work for balls of yarn.  i cannot imagine that they bring in much money at a sale.  maybe i live in too urban an area and there are no knitters but my neighbor.

 

i once made some holders for incense before finding out the person who wanted them might go as high as $10 for a really nice one.  so i dunno.............

 

There are lots of urban knitters. Handcrafts have become very popular amongst the hipsters.

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Yes, I agree with all above.   I make  knitting bowls all the time.   And I do throw them much thicker than I would a regular bowl.  And I dry them upside down and wait until leather hard to cut them. I have had problems with warping in the kiln but it is usually if I am using an extremely smooth clay (b-mix or porcelain).    I would post a pic, but not quite sure which icon to choose for that.

 

 May I say Min?  that those are some really great looking knitting bowls!!  I love your colors and the shape of them. 

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Thanks for the info - will try my cone 6 clay and working thicker. 

 

Bowls I have seen here have been thin walled but I can see that the thickness and lower temp will create less stress and more strength.  Guess it's time to throw some more bowls rather than trim what I made today.  Min - thanks for your picture.  I have put in more carving - perhaps that adds to my problem too. 

 

Ask questions - it is a good way to learn - and many have helpful answers here.

 

Thanks everyone!

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pazu, don't be discouraged by my experience, i am asthmatic so incense has never interested me, maybe my judgment is warped.  my neighbor may not have as much money to spend on a holder as your possible customers.  my design was a simple straight run of extruded clay with high rounded edges maybe 1 and a half inches wide and about 9 inches long.  i stamped a dragonfly into the body near the slanted hole i made in the curled up end. simple sprayed glaze and done. these were inspired by a beautiful butter dish made in 1993 by Lee Ann Cory who lived in Virginia at the time and since moved away. (sigh).   your photo shows a much more complex item.

 

using the same extrusion, i made some only 1and a half by 1 and a half  inches with a hole in the center and slightly domed so the stick would have some support.  i made 10 of these and took them to one fair for $3 since i thought teens might want them.  sold none.  had some admiration from some people.  a friend in florida makes fifty cent piece size discs with a stamp in the center around the hole.  he sells them for $1.  i guess they would fill up the empty spaces in the kiln but i am not interested.

 

there are some at the Waterford fair which is going on as i type.  will be over tomorrow and i will know if any sold  

 

i have a friend coming today who is computer literate and maybe she will post a photo for me so you can see the simplicity of the design.  maybe that would pay in your circumstances.

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...

i have a friend coming today who is computer literate and maybe she will post a photo for me so you can see the simplicity of the design.  maybe that would pay in your circumstances.

Sorry for the off-topic but the secret is:

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After you selected the image, click Attach This File ... and then you need to click "Add to Post"

 

post-19541-0-45890500-1381048602_thumb.png

post-19541-0-45112400-1381048282_thumb.png

post-19541-0-71519300-1381048357_thumb.png

post-19541-0-45890500-1381048602_thumb.png

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thank you, mart.  i do not know how to get the picture to the point where it will fit on here.  they always come out too big.  they are in picasa and i need to make them fit. 

 

how did you get that nice picture of your screen with the red circle?

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nice colors and design! someone suggested that i make some for the larger skeins (?) of yarn since bowls only work for balls of yarn. i cannot imagine that they bring in much money at a sale. maybe i live in too urban an area and there are no knitters but my neighbor.

 

i once made some holders for incense before finding out the person who wanted them might go as high as $10 for a really nice one. so i dunno.............

 

There are lots of urban knitters. Handcrafts have become very popular amongst the hipsters.

Oh! I make pottery and I knit - I'm so hip and I didn't even know it! :)

 

But yes, if you seek out the local yarn store in your area (not the chain craft store) - we have two in our small city - and talk to the owner, my guess is they would love to sell your yarn bowls.

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We were just doing this today at the Guild.  The fired ones that had come back had slumped in cone 10 redcution, and the pieces they were trimming and carving today were already showing signs of collapsing.  I have one to work on next week which I have left alittle thicker, and I will waite longer before carving and try some of the other advice also.  Thanks; I am glad I came home for some advice first.  Those bowls are very nice!  Thanks

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I've made a bunch of these. I fire to cone 5, electric. I throw them thicker, for the same reasons mentioned above and usually leave the cutout in till the piece is almost dry. My biggest problem is getting in a hurry cleaning the cutout, and breaking off the "ear". After several failed attempts at repairing, I suggest don't try :)

 

You also might try different shapes. I've done some that look tall, cone shape utensil holders that folks seem to like because their cat can't see the yarn ball spinning around inside!

 

Oh, and check out my web page. There are a few of my yarn bowls there.

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I have not done this yet but at NCECA a woman I was sitting next to told me her trick to making yarn bowls-    She cuts out the design but leaves a small connection near the top.  It prevents it from warping as it dries. Then once it is mostly dry she removes the small remaining piece.  

 

It makes sense to me, I plan to try next time I make some. 

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Just unloaded a bunch this morning. I agree with throwing them thicker than usual, the ones in my attachment are from 2lb 12 oz of clay. I do the cut-outs straight after trimming the bowl and dry them upside down. Cut-outs done with a scalpel (one of my favorite tools), holes with drill bits. ^6, smooth white clay, shrinks 14= 15%

 

Min

Hi Min. 

 

Can I ask a question please?  The colours you have used in your yarn bowls ... are they stains mixed with clear glaze?

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Just unloaded a bunch this morning. I agree with throwing them thicker than usual, the ones in my attachment are from 2lb 12 oz of clay. I do the cut-outs straight after trimming the bowl and dry them upside down. Cut-outs done with a scalpel (one of my favorite tools), holes with drill bits. ^6, smooth white clay, shrinks 14= 15%

 

Min

Hi Min. 

 

Can I ask a question please?  The colours you have used in your yarn bowls ... are they stains mixed with clear glaze?

 

 

Spectrum underglazes on dry greenware, diluted a fair bit, thin but not drippy, 3 coats. I now bisque to ^06 since some of the colours flux at ^04. Clear glaze overtop.

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Just unloaded a bunch this morning. I agree with throwing them thicker than usual, the ones in my attachment are from 2lb 12 oz of clay. I do the cut-outs straight after trimming the bowl and dry them upside down. Cut-outs done with a scalpel (one of my favorite tools), holes with drill bits. ^6, smooth white clay, shrinks 14= 15%

 

Min

Hi Min. 

 

Can I ask a question please?  The colours you have used in your yarn bowls ... are they stains mixed with clear glaze?

 

 

Spectrum underglazes on dry greenware, diluted a fair bit, thin but not drippy, 3 coats. I now bisque to ^06 since some of the colours flux at ^04. Clear glaze overtop.

 

 

Super, thanks for sharing your technique Min. They look stunning.

 

So what you're doing is almost like applying slip to greenware. Do you bisque fire the underglaze pot, and then glaze fire the clear on a second firing? Or do you do it all in the bisque firing?

 

Sorry for asking so many questions ... I'm just curious to know.

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Just unloaded a bunch this morning. I agree with throwing them thicker than usual, the ones in my attachment are from 2lb 12 oz of clay. I do the cut-outs straight after trimming the bowl and dry them upside down. Cut-outs done with a scalpel (one of my favorite tools), holes with drill bits. ^6, smooth white clay, shrinks 14= 15%

 

Min

Hi Min. 

 

Can I ask a question please?  The colours you have used in your yarn bowls ... are they stains mixed with clear glaze?

 

 

Spectrum underglazes on dry greenware, diluted a fair bit, thin but not drippy, 3 coats. I now bisque to ^06 since some of the colours flux at ^04. Clear glaze overtop.

 

 

Super, thanks for sharing your technique Min. They look stunning.

 

So what you're doing is almost like applying slip to greenware. Do you bisque fire the underglaze pot, and then glaze fire the clear on a second firing? Or do you do it all in the bisque firing?

 

Sorry for asking so many questions ... I'm just curious to know.

 

 

I brush the underglaze on dry greenware, yes it's like brushing slip on except I don't put it on until the pot is dry (or fairly dry). I didn't want to use slip for a couple reasons, firstly my clay is fussy about when I apply slip, it needs to be when the clay is fairly wet or the pots split. Secondly, I didn't want to use slip on this form since they like to warp even without adding extra risks of wet slip on leatherhard pots.  Spectrum underglazes are lovely to work with, they seem expensive but they can be diluted a fair bit, I don't measure but roughly 1:1 with water. 

 

Yes, I bisque fire the pot then dip them in a clear glaze.

 

Thanks for your kind words about my bowls.

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