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About annekat

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 08/19/1952

Profile Information

  • Location
    Olympia, Washington
  • Interests
    cats, gardening, walking
  1. My spoon rests are similar in shape to yours. I throw them off the hump from recycled clay. I don't make as many at a time as you do. i make them in three sizes, and there is enough decoration on them that I can't sell them for $5. They are $16, $18, and $20. So they are not as much of a quick, cheap little thing, but nevertheless, they do sell very well. They would be a good practice item for students whether throwing off the hump or not, and something very salable for people testing their wings for selling their work.
  2. Besides small spoon rests and such, magnets (that is, pieces that will have magnets glued to their backs once fired), make good stuffers. And people like to buy them.
  3. I work in ^6 but like the idea of your Mexican flavored colors and patterns at low fire temps; I think that look will always be attractive to people. If only you can get past the boredom (for you) of the flowers and geometric patterns. Tweaking them sounds great.... maybe something with a cartoon-like twist. Maybe add some lettering somewhere, with sayings and such. I know someone who has taken off with that approach, but I wouldn't say it has any Mexican or other specific ethnic flavor, so yours would be different.
  4. Hi, fellow Washingtonian! I'm in Olympia, presumably not the crappy part of the state. Although, judging by today's weather, it is hard to tell. I started squaring off my smaller bowls and stamping the thickened rims when I got bored with bowls. People like them a lot. With bigger bowls, the squaring off doesn't work as well for me, although it would be a good challenge to try again. So I still make bigger round bowls. Anyway, I'd suggest any sort of alteration of the round shape, just start somewhere and see where it takes you. I bought a used slab roller from a friend and have had it sitting for a couple of years. But that would be another way to take a break from shapes that bore you.... try some handbuilding. I make spoon rests off the hump and people really buy them. And since you mention corks, I have done well with little "stash jars" with corks. Now that MJ is legal in our state, they are even more of a hot item, although of course they have other uses. I was bored with the incised patterns I've been doing for years and am now doing more of the old 60's- 70's type dipping of overlapping glazes on many of my pieces. People enjoy the variations you can get with this type of glazing, and many of them weren't around in the 60's and 70's and don't even know that it's an old idea. Good luck on perking things up. As for inspiration, I think people's idea of looking at pots on the web is an excellent one. Not to copy, just to get ideas of how you might tweak things to make them more interesting to you and any potential customers.
  5. It depends on the clay and what temperature it is fired to. I use a dark red ^6 stoneware. The high iron content may make it a little fluxier when it reaches maturity, increasing the chances of sticking. I do fire jar lids on the jar and they need to be rapped to loosen, as said above. Occasionally there will be a small chip out of one, especially if I have fired all the way to ^6, or close to that. I usually fire to a solid ^5, large witness cone touching the shelf, or close to that. That minimizes the problem. And for these reasons I probably wouldn't fire unglazed rims touching, and I always use kiln wash even if the glazes don't run, as pots can stick to bare shelves.
  6. I've never made one but customers have suggested it. One thing that crosses my mind is that I've seen a wire and wooden handle listed somewhere like the Aftosa catalog, or maybe Axner/Laguna and other suppliers, which one can attach to the compost jar through small holes made, to make it easier to carry the jar out for dumping. It may be several years since I have actually see this accessory or thought to look for it.
  7. Here it is, for those who are unfamiliar with it: http://www.dogwoodceramics.com/product/the-cink.htm Pretty cool. Not something I can possibly afford, but at least the replacement filters are pretty cheap.
  8. Thanks for the clarification. I thought it was a misspelling that everyone was too polite to point out. Now I'll have to research this Cink thing, as I do have septic system and don't want any clay in there. Also the small on demand water heaters are something I'd like to check out.
  9. I just walk back and forth to and from the house with hot water from the kitchen sink. And empty the clear part off the top of the bucket into the garden, or the whole thing into the recycle bucket. What a pain! Seriously considering moving my wheel and some shelves and things into the house for the winter. I'd get a lot more done. Would have the wood stove and save on the propane to heat the studio. I live in an old cabin with a rough wood floor and funky interior walls, so no big deal. Just need to clean up diligently. I have an upstairs for living space and to get away from the clay. Here I'm complaining and I live in a much less cold place than many! But cold is cold, no matter how cold. The fingers can't work correctly when cold.
  10. Could the piece have been made of recycled clay? All group studios I've worked in have had recycle bins which were available to everyone. It was fairly common for foreign objects or stuff to get in there. Even in my own recycled clay, I occasionally find a chamois or a clay bag closure wire. TJR, I say "shammy". Doesn't matter anyway, because I work alone. But when teaching, I informed students of the correct French pronunciation and the fact that it means "goat" or "goat skin", I think, but that it is OK to say "shammy" because that is what everyone says. Anyone may correct me on the literal meaning of the word. I took a lot of French in school but it was 45 years ago.
  11. I worked for some professional potters with high quality work who always signed their work with a Sharpie, after the glaze firing. It was black Sharpie on brick red clay, and it looked fine. There are lots of colors of Sharpies these days, including ones that look like iron oxide. For special projects, I've used a Pen-Touch gold pen, quick dry metallic ink, permanent. A little nerve wracking hoping you don't make a mistake, but results were great. This was a long time ago, and there are probably more options now. For my general work, I still use the method of signing into leather hard greenware with a dulled wooden knife. Gives a softer line than a sharp wooden knife. When I occasionally forget to sign, which is rare, then I use a Sharpie, but really prefer that all my signing look the same.
  12. Those prices are crazy. I got one when it first came out, a paperback. Did it come out in hardback or special edition or something? Guess I'll hold onto mine, though selling it might be a little tempting.....
  13. I agree with what everyone has said. If you find you can make something that doesn't need slip and scoring, don't slip and score. Otherwise, if in doubt, do it! A whole lot does depend on the clay and the state of dryness it is in.
  14. Come to think of it, there was something we added to the tumbler to polish the rocks, I think some type of gritty stuff. I'd forgotten about that.
  15. I had also thought of doing it with ^6 red clay pieces fired to maturity but with no glaze. I was thinking it would be a nice way to fill a tabletop fountain, were I ever to make one. Some glazed shards mixed in with the the unglazed would be nice, too. Or making small, rounded "pebbles" out of clay, firing them, and then tumbling them to see if they'd take on a sheen.
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