I’m going to become a kiln bore!

Here is the first of what I’m sure will be many kiln loading/unloading photos.

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This is the only shelf I can show in the first load, as the secret (for now) project is on the other two shelves. 🙂

This is loaded awaiting bisque firing.

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Challenge yourself!

So the phrase goes, but we’ve been taking that to new levels this past month. Since we knew that Santa was bringing us our new kiln just after New Year, we’ve been on a making and glazing frenzy.

Our first firing was a commissioning firing, to oxidise the elements and burn off the manufacturing coatings. It’s been full steam ahead since the start of the holidays, as we have been working to a deadline to complete a piece of work for a fairly high profile event. More specific details to come on that at a later date!

We’ve worked on a couple of pieces for this project, even though we really only need one piece. Being the first firings with new kiln and new glazes, we don’t want to take any chances that something will go wrong, so we have the one major piece, and a slightly smaller piece on a similar theme, and a third that will be fired separately should anything go wrong with the first two.

There will be some publicity with this project, so we want it to be just right. We’ve been taking snapshots at each stage of the process to go along with the blurb for the event website, so I’ll post them here once it’s public.

As well as the main pieces for this project, we’ve been busy making other items, to maximise the firing and not waste energy firing a half-empty kiln. This means lots of kiln-filler brooches and pendants as well as tiles and small pots will appear here soon.

My 13 yr old niece has been working on a hand-built pot for her make-up brushes, so that’s progressing well too. She’s quite the designer and has some great ideas. I guided her in processes but it’s pretty much all her own work.

For now, this is the photo I’ll share, as well as a wee trinket box I made with leftover clay from her project.

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I should point out that the beer can in the background was left over from new year, and was used as a ‘former’ for the pot. We haven’t been feeding Kathleen with beer!

She’s rather proud of her pot. This is her signature look what I made pose… See the pic below this one, taken on the day of the Royal Wedding…
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(and I hadn’t noticed till now, but what a difference 8 months makes when you’re this age!)

…and finally, my wee pot. Looking forward to glazing this one.
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🙂

Thank You Santa!

We have a new kiln, and an impressive boost to our glaze supplies, thanks to Santa (and a day-job bonus!)

So excited (and a little bit terrified) to get started with it. 🙂

It’s a Potterycrafts Aurora kiln and an electronic Mitsco controller. Not massive at 40 litres capacity, but it has wheels and fits into our studio setup for now and totally flexible on a 13amp domestic supply. A bigger studio will allow bigger kilns in the future but this is perfectly adequate for our needs right now and we’re delighted with it.

…and here it is, all laid out to check against the delivery note. We have some gorgeous Amaco Potters’ Choice and Sahara stoneware glazes, and a selection of Terracolor engobes. Lots of experimentation and glaze tests to come.

Now we just need a name for her…

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