Get a Grip on Yourself!

I decided it was time to start restocking my mug collection.  Mugs are definitely a staple of pottery, but I don’t make a lot of time to throw them.  I think I stress myself out when making them.  I’m not sure why – I enjoy throwing them, making the handles, and the finished product.  I think it is the actual attachment of the handle to the body that makes me tense – this is the step that gives the mug it’s soul.  In the end, they usually all turn out great (except when I have a case of the Mondays!), so the tension was for naught.


This time I started with a collection of more tradition styled mugs, with an S-shape and pulled handles.  I am very happy with how these turned out and how they feel in my hand.


I also experimented with some more non-tradition styled handles, including some slab handles.  Once I tried these ‘grips’ I immediately fell in love with them.  They feel super comfortable, and look great on different types of mugs.  I think I will glaze a couple of these soon during a test firing, just to see how they glaze and how they actually work for use.


My favorite part of pottery and trying something you haven’t done before, either through experimentation or happy accidents.  I don’t do a very good job of trying to throw repetitive forms – I am constantly trying to tweak and change my throwing shapes.  It feels great to have something work out like this!  Now, how can I change this to make it better…


Winter Wonderland

Well, we’ve gotten a series of snowfalls the past few days, which convinced me to throw some of the white clay I had lying around.  I had a couple boxes of Hi-Fire White stoneware from Continental Clay left that I decided to use up.  This is probably my favorite clay right now – if feels great while throwing, and turns a wonderful white once fired.  As I use up the large collection of red clay I have (Mid-Fire Red from CC), I think I will transition over to the white. 


The last pieces I made with the white clay was some faceted bowls.  I always enjoy making faceted bowls – it tends to be one of the more relaxing things I make.  I like using the white clay for these bowls, as some of my glazes break nicely over the piece. 


This winter has been a busy one, but luckily I’ve been finding quite a bit of time to work on the wheel.  My plan is to continue making pieces until mid-March.  Then I will transition to glazing/firing my pieces, so that I can be done with everything before the busiest season of landscape design hits.