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Greetings all.

 

I've had a student interested in trying this technique, ever since I showed him examples of the process a year or two ago.

 

I first came across the process on this site.

 

I experimented a little, but my results have not been great.  I am using cotton yarn, as directed.  I've experimented with the yarn knitted and unaltered.  

I've done multiple dips into the slip, with wringing and drying in between.

The resulting pieces are always extremely fragile.  Not just fragile because of how thin they are, but because there is a lot of gaps from where the yarn burnt out.

 

Suggestions?

 

Do I need more layers of slip?

 

Is it supposed to be a deflocculated slip?

 

The author of the article on this site, is using porcelain.  We will not be.  It will be a low fire white clay.  So it wouldn't be nearly as vitrified.  Is this the issue?

 

Any help would be appreciated.

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Can you post some images of the look you are aiming for?

 

I have done this process with yarn, string and lace with porcelain and regular clay. The results are fragile by nature since you are burning away the interior support system and leaving a hollow tube.

 

One way it is more successful is if you soak the string or yarn in slip then lay it on the surface of a pot as decoration. Multiple layers of slip sometimes result in a loss of definition ... you lose the pattern you wanted to see under the smooth surface of slip.

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try a thick cotton doily from the dollar store.  they have more substance than whatever you might wrap around a form.  that way, you get some practice until you work out exactly what the student wants.

 

there is also cotton rope, closeline, that is thicker.  the word "yarn" covers a lot of stuff from tiny hairlike threads to bulky sweater type.

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Chris,  this is kind of the look we are looking to replicate:

 

http://ceramicartsdaily.org/ceramic-art-and-artists/ceramic-sculpture/making-delicate-porcelain-sculpture-with-porcelain-slip-and-flaxed-paper-clay/

 

I like the idea of lace, but one reason my student likes the yarn idea, is because he knits.  He's quite good.

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The resulting pieces are always extremely fragile.  Not just fragile because of how thin they are, but because there is a lot of gaps from where the yarn burnt out.

Benzine i am curious to know too. i just tried with rice and the resultant piece is very fragile - and VERY sharp. same principle as your quote. the gaps are creating the fragility. i cant even hand sand/burnish with the diamond sandpaper without losing something. 

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  • 1 month later...

A bit of an update.  My student ended up making three "yarn" bowls of increasing size.  The plan was, that if all survived, he'd have a set, if not all did make it, we hoped to just have one.

 

They all survived the drying an firing.  This is amazing, because they sat around in plain site, in a classroom full of teenagers, for a couple weeks...

 

He dipped them in a couple different colors of dip glaze.  They turned out great.  In fact, he entered them in our Conference Art Show, and they placed first in the Ceramics:  Non-Utilitarian category!  He was very excited by this, as was I.

 

A couple take aways:

 

- Multiple slip layers, and ringing the excess out between layers, seems to work best.  My earlier experiments used less layers, and were all types of brittle.

 

- Good Lord does the yarn burning out create quite a bit of smoke for a short while!  I usually leave the peeps out, for a while during the bisque.  That was a poor choice this time, as you could see some smoke, and definitely could smell it.  I've fired with newspaper in projects, with little smoke at all.  This was noticeably different.  Also, the hood vent shut off, around the time most of the smoking was occurring.  Luckily, the smoke detector did not go off, which is amazing as it is fairly close to the kiln.

 

-  Dipping the bisqued wares is different than I'm used to.  The resulting fired pieces are insanely porous.  So the glaze took a while to dry, as we rinsed the wares after the bisque.  So they were still a bit saturated, when he dipped them.  The glaze took a while to dry because of this.

 

-  Lastly, they are unbelievably light!  Even though they have a very delicate appearance, they still feel way lighter than you would think.

 

I am glad they turned out well for the student.  Now I may have to experiment more with the process, like with the wasp nests discussed in another thread.  

 

Thanks for your help all!

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  • 1 month later...

Benzine-

From the photos, I don't understand why these were classified as "Non-Utilitarian" in your Conference Art Show, unless the jury chose to place them there to allow more awards through more categories. Seems to me that they are highly utilitarian, just not for containing liquids or small particle powders. I'm guessing that the quality of these was equivalent or better than those pieces in the "Utilitarian" category.

Just my opinion. Very nice work!

Regards,

Fred

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a HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT did these?  from knitting to finish?  (probably with a little help from a talented teacher)  good job! does not begin to cover this.

 

 

if they had not won a named prize, someone should have named a new one,  "most inventive use of materials".

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If porcelain is fragile as you state: earthenware will be worse. Intriguing set of values involved here. Cotton would absorb more: but absorb what? Moisture, soluable salts, sub micron particles? Hmmm.. My inclination at this point would be: add 5% of flux to the slip! along with 10% ball clay. ( preferably foundry hills creme.) the flux will increase vitrification, and the ball clay will hold additional moisture, as well as give additional body to the slip. Higher ball clay will also make the slip a bit tacky: which should make the process easier. I would stick with porcelain myself.

Nerd

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Benzine-

From the photos, I don't understand why these were classified as "Non-Utilitarian" in your Conference Art Show, unless the jury chose to place them there to allow more awards through more categories. Seems to me that they are highly utilitarian, just not for containing liquids or small particle powders. I'm guessing that the quality of these was equivalent or better than those pieces in the "Utilitarian" category.

Just my opinion. Very nice work!

Regards,

Fred

 

I chose to put them in the Non-Utilitarian category.  Judges have the ability to move items, to a more appropriate category, if they choose.  My reasoning for putting them in that category, was that yes, they could be used as bowls, but their fragile nature would make that ill advised.  Also, I had another project in the Utilitarian category, and didn't want them to compete against each other.  

 

a HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT did these?  from knitting to finish?  (probably with a little help from a talented teacher)  good job! does not begin to cover this.

 

 

if they had not won a named prize, someone should have named a new one,  "most inventive use of materials".

 

Yep, a very talented, student, with an eagerness to learn.  I simply presented the idea to him, and made the slip...  I also yellled at any other students, who even looked like they might try to pick them up, during the construction process...

 

Nerd, I am not sure how fragile a porcelain version is.  The artist, that posted their work here, used porcelain.  I only ever used earthenware, as that is what I have on hand, in my classroom.  

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Fred,

 

The Utilitarian piece placed 3rd.  It was a nicely built and glazed coil pot.  The student apparently enjoyed the coil building process, as the next Semester, she built another coil pot that was nearly two foot tall, with some excellent long flowing handles.  

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Ben,

Have you considered using these as in a chalice(old definition). The old chalices were cup holders, they had a cup that sat or was joined inside of them. I think if you wanted more stability in the form, you could use it to hold another form, one either wheel thrown or handbuilt. Many possibilities present themselves here as it is knitted yarn and has some stretch to it. One is a wheel thrown piece with some form of spacer(layers of paper, etc) on it that you would stretch the knitted piece over before dipping in the slip. Another would be to stretch the yarn over the leather hard piece and then dip in the slip.

 

Just thinking, it would make the piece more functional, and survivable.

 

best,

Pres

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Pres,

 

I definitely have been thinking of other things, I could do with this process.  I am thinking something more sculptural, like woven figures.

 

Problem is, I need to find a new student, who also knits or crochets.  These bowls were done by a Senior...

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  • 2 years later...

Have you seen this lady's work? https://www.lisabelsky.com

She uses porcelain that she mixes herself and hand crochets het vessels and then dips them in her mixture. The pieces are exquisite and very detailed.

I feel like the more absorbent the material, the more clay slip would be in the fabric and therefor the more clay would be left after the fiber burns off.

I have seen several people do this with thin lace material but always on top of clay forms. This whole process intrigues me and scares the crap out of simultaneously. 

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