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Glazes for dark clay body

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Hey all.. I'm relatively inexperienced with clay but loving the learning. I've recently found a very dark brown clay body that is a dream to throw with. The only problem is that every glaze I put on it looks like crap. I'm sure it's the iron oxide in the clay body interacting with the glazes, but am unsure what glazes to switch to. I only have the ability to use commercial glazes at this point, so if you know any that work well on a dark clay body, I would appreciate the heads up. Thanks!

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I usually use a dark body, what do you mean every glaze looks bad?  Do you have examples?  Anything transparent is going to be dark, so celadons and such are out.  Maybe some of the potters choice glazes by Amaco would look good.  I mix my own so I can't recommend any commercial ones, but colors that look good on dark stoneware are whites and creams, blues, greens and pinks.





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If you can have the presence of mind to think about how you want to glaze the piece while you're still making it, adding a layer of white slip is also a good option if you want the contrast between the red clay and lighter, brighter glazes. I personally do a lot of this.


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  • 1 year later...

I use commercial glazes most of the time.  potters choice has some lovely blues that show up in wonderful ways on dark clay bodies.  i make color charts each time i am firing a load and have new colors in.  this is my board of dark clays. sometimes they dont show well and sometimes you get wonderful results even with a commercial glaze (while the ones you do mix yourself can be astonishing, i am not a glaze snob as so many companies make great ones ready to use, but the effort to make up your own, worth it to try it) i digress.  here are some of my tiles, you can see the clay bodies showing on the edges as to how dark the clay was.  when they come out really bad, i pitch the test tile. space. you run out of space LOL 

happy glazing. hope this helps someone. 

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