I am so glad that we have CAD. I used to subscribe to Clayart. Just couldn't take it anymore, between the sacred cows, holier than thous and all the drivel sprinkled between a few nuggets of useful information. Never felt comfortable posting anything there - the slightest thing could erupt in flame wars.
I hope we can maintain our culture of being welcoming and helpful.
<snip> I know that in about a year I'll likely be upgrading the volume and type of glaze storage containers, though these will still work for glazes I use in lower quantities. Right now I'll be mixing them by 1/2 to 3/4 gallon and saving space is very important since my studio is only half-finished and my glaze shelving section isn't in yet. I plan to do all actual mixing in a thick two gallon plastic bucket and only use these for storage once they're mixed/sieved since they are brittle compared to heavy-duty paint buckets. <snip>
I've found a couple of good sources for free studio buckets. Smaller size containers can be obtained from the deli/bakery departments at the grocery store. Containers for icing work well and are heavy duty (although after you wash one out you will never want to eat icing on a store bought cake). I get bigger 4-5 gallon sized buckets from my dry cleaner that their powdered laundry soap comes in. These are the best because they are constantly the same size and ready to use with just a quick rinse. Buy a lid opener for 5 gallon buckets - these are available in the paint section of the home improvement stores.
At the bakery/deli, I just usually ask each time I'm in there if they have any buckets that they are throwing out that day. Sometimes they may agree to hold them for you, but most places will not. If they agree to hold them, pick them up when you say you will and don't be surprised/upset if all the employees don't get the message and your saved buckets got thrown out. If they help you, put in a nice word (letter is better) with the grocery store manager.
So, although these items are "free" they require effort & time to obtain/get ready for studio use.
For labeling, right now I use a sharpie on colored duct tape on both the lid and side of the bucket. It's quick and works well enough even though it may not be the most elegant solution.
Since you mention that the wheel is old and broken, you should know that Creative Industries was bought by Speedball. However, they only bought and support certain wheel lines and parts/help on the really old CI wheels is "unobtanium".
When I was vacationing in China in 2013, I couldn't access CAD at the beginning of my trip. I think I was able to get in by the end of our stay. It might now be on the "approved" list if you know what I mean.
Did your work blow up in a bisque firing or were you trying to raw fire your work in the glaze firing of her bisque ware? If the latter, that firing schedule is too fast - your pots need to go through a slow bisque firing. If you continue to fire with her, she will need to adjust her firing schedule to accommodate your clay's requirements. If she is unwilling to change her schedule, maybe its possible for you to rent the kiln from her and do a full load with only your work.
Assuming that your work is functional, the general rule is that your glaze firing needs to be done to the cone range/heat work at which your clay body matures. This is done to avoid problems with 1) under firing the clay body (not vitrified, remains porous) as mentioned in other responses, and 2) over firing the clay body (bloating, slumping, melting). As glazes suffer from their own sets of defects when under and over fired, you need to use a glaze that correspondingly works in the firing range at which your clay body matures.
I like the concept that there is room for creativity within the boundaries of structure. Very much enjoyed the power point and how actual tea bowls morphed into drawings of the different shapes. Well done and a well spent half hour.
Good points/analysis. I was not trying to advocate one way or another, just provide some additional information so people can make a more informed decision/do their own due diligence.
Like you I can remember when interest rates/cost of capital was not at the record lows we've had the last few years. I worked for a publicly traded start up company that was in a high growth mode acquiring real estate assets with long term revenue streams. Back in 2000 our cost of capital was 12~13% and these notes were secured by assets required to be held in bankruptcy remote special purpose entities. Another company that I worked for from 2010-2012 had venture capital investors that were seeking double digit returns on investment for money loaned in 2008.
I too suspect that Square's program is at a lower rate than a credit card cash advance on a credit card. Ultimately, it is another lending option. If a borrower can qualify for a better deal, then take it.
^ It looks absolutely horrible. If you get an advance of $4500, you pay 13% of card sales, paying back $5152. Apparently they just automatically deduct 13% of your card sales until you have paid it back. So I read it wrong. $652 in interest. So ... eeeek 14.5% interest. I'm surprised they are doing this.
The cost for this loan is a fixed fee not an annual interest rate, with the fee being the same whether you pay off the loan on day 1 or in 2 years. The fee is typically between 10-14% of what you borrow. Square then deducts a percentage (also 10-14%) from each subsequent credit card transaction until the loan and fee are paid in full.
While in theory, it could take you 2 or more years to pay this back, per this article the pay back period is typically 10 months.
Square only makes this program available to certain customers - i.e., they run the analytics and know your credit card transaction history/how fast you will likely pay back the $.
Advantages seem to be ease/speed of getting a loan for businesses that cannot otherwise qualify for typical financing. Capital funding, if you can get it, is always very expensive for higher risk borrowers.
In my mind, some additional things to ponder for small businesses are:
1. Is your card set up through a business entity with limited liability (LLC, S-corp, C-corp, etc) or is the account in your individual name?
2. Does Square require a personal guarantee for the loan even if the answer to question 1 is that the borrower is a business with limited liability?
3. As the article says, you better know your sales margin.
4. What's in the fine print of the loan agreement?
That bites. At one of the community studios where I work, everyone is assigned a studio number which must be put on your pots. Bisque and glaze items are unloaded directly to shelves located in a non-public area of the studio behind a centralized desk. Bisque is stored together in one area and glazed pieces in another area of shelves. The shelves have number ranges which correspond to the studio numbers, so all your work is put in the same place and it is easy to see when your items are out of the kiln.
The upside is nobody can walk in and take your stuff. The downside is that it requires an on-duty attendant and having the studio number on your piece is a bit aggravating/clutters up the bottom of your pots However, it greatly reduces the opportunities to take things which are not yours. Perhaps something along these line might work for you.