Saturday, December 10, 2016

Studio Open House & Pottery Sale

Here are some snapshots of my pottery before friends braved a cold rainy weekend to visit, see my studio and "adopt" some pieces. It's always interesting to see what people choose. Thanks to everyone who made it a lovely time.  

More pictures are at

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

      You are invited to  

How I made a chanoyu binkake (brazier for Japanese tea ceremony) 

To be sure that the electric heating unit would fit, I made a scale drawing that is 12% larger than the finished dimensions, to allow for the clay shrinkage during drying and firing. On the potter's wheel I used 12 pounds of clay to form a bowl according to my drawing. 

When the bowl was leather hard, I cut out the front window, made a hole in the bottom for the electric cord, and added 3 feet. 

I also made a holder for the special Japanese electric heating unit (shaped like the traditional charcoal used for chanoyu), and separate platforms and little discs to adjust the height for different tea kettles. 

I traced Ginkgo tree leaves from my garden and painted them with 2 glazes to create a variation in colors, then applied an eggshell matte white glaze over the whole piece. This makes a subtle contrast between gloss and matte. The Ginkgo had been one of my favorite trees even before I discovered that it is a symbol used by the Urasenke School of Tea Ceremony. It's prehistoric triangular leaves and glowing yellow autumn color are amazing. 

It was a relief to see that my planning for the electric heater and traditional semi-circular front piece worked

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Group Picture

This is a group of shot of recent work taken in the new photo area my husband helped me set up yesterday. 

Friday, August 12, 2016

July 2016 Kiln Firing

Looking into the kiln, 
the last shelf (bottom) to unload.

Folded, slab-built bowls, spice spoon.

Mugs, "bark" texture handles, 
charcoal matte glaze, 
white inside. 

Stack of condiment bowls with a spoon. 


Sugar bowl & spoon, creamer. 

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Random notes for the week:

This is a sweet little painting of me at the potter's wheel by Xochitl Shuey, my friend, artist and potter here in Austin.



Our 7 yr old grandson arrived from Philadelphia yesterday. He made some sweet little pots in my studio and then we spent the evening with his 4 year old cousin who lives in town. It will be a week of boy time for this "grammy".

But, I may be able to fit in some studio time to fill the kiln for a bisque firing.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Cut and Fold

At first I planned to make standard cups and saucers, but then decided that a larger saucer would be fun. It brought to mind the glass luncheon set my Mom used for her bridge parties in the 1950s. So here is my updated version using a bean-shaped press-mold I had made a couple years ago. I think it will be just the right size for a cup of joe and donut. I'm also made some sets with tumblers for juice and a muffin. (Pictures are before & after glaze firing.)

I start by making a paper pattern for my "folded" pieces. Clay behaves differently than paper, so it fun to see how the final piece looks.

The cups start out with a simple fan shaped pattern. The pattern has to be 12-14% larger than the desired finished size to allow for shrinkage during firing.

Here they are waiting to be loaded into the kiln for the bisque firing. 

Back in the Studio

Work in my studio came to a standstill last October when the health of my parents, in their mid 90s, failed suddenly. My dear mother passed away in January. Dad has recovered and moved into a great assisted living apartment. It has taken awhile to regain my balance and begin work again. 

Lucky for me, pots can wait patiently to be glazed. It was great to finally see some new glazes perform as I had hoped. Here are a few pictures:

Glaze-fired mugs that were shown in the process of being made in my Aug 2015 blog entry

My new Lime Green matte glaze feels soft to touch.

"Swoop" bowls in new glaze colors

Matte Charcoal & Eggshell White glaze on my hand built "folded" bowls

Creamer & sugar, Eggshell white exterior with soft blue gloss interior