Caution: I Throw Things!

For the first time in two long years, on Sunday I turned the switch on my Potters wheel and started throwing. I’d prepared 4 wee balls of clay and had a 50% hit rate. First pot collapsed as I took it too thin and too far, second attempt, I threw a reasonable bowl and altered it off the wheel – ok, so it slipped coming off the wheel and decided, itself, to be oval, but it still looks nice. I shaped it slightly more to even it up and may make more alterations when it gets to leather hard to make it more deliberate. Third pot, I put my thumb through the base, and the fourth came off the wheel exactly the size and shape I hoped for and remained that way.

So, after two years, not too bad a result with just an hour’s work (with lots of faffing about before, during and after the actual throwing. I plan to get back into the studio tonight to trim and finish the leather hard pots and just potter about (pun intended). Just becuse I can. 🙂

Mo brought her sketch pad in and, with the gorgeous view for inspiration, drew out a couple of tile designs. We both have so many ideas of things we want to try. We’ve had two years of planning time!

The workbench is actually a couple of Ikea trestles that we bought in 2005 and then didn’t have space for a bench so didn’t build them, so it was good to finally see them in position and being used for their proper purpose. When extended up to their full height, they made a good high level workbench. Just need a couple of stools now so that we don’t need to keep pinching the kitchen stools.

Freecycle, here we come!


Birthday gift

Well, first week back after a week off of work, and a lovely surprise waiting for me on my return.  Flowers, card and a lovely birthday gift (I celebrated my 40th while we were off) from my colleagues.  They weren’t sure where to get gift vouchers for ‘pottery stuff’ so they gave me cash to spend on the studio.

I spent quite a long time last night online putting together an order, including a few handbuilding tools (particularly a coiler tool that I’ve wanted since I did Jane Kelly’s summer school last year), some throwing necessities, Glaze spraying kit, glazes and, most exciting, some porcelain.  As I look through the list of goodies on my order, I’m rather pleased with everything.  Can’t wait for it to arrive and get started.  

The studio is coming together.  No photos today as the rain came down just as were moving the wheel in and we had to run for cover, but we now have our bathroom back, and the wheel, clay and tools are where they belong.  It now has everything but the kitchen sink – literally.  I’ll be moving the sink unit and the shelves next weekend and then we’re done.  By that time the clay and tools order will be here and we’ll be raring to go.

Slow progress


It doesn’t look like it, but we made quite a bit of progress today.  Our total time spent so far is 19 hours, and our total spend is £13, because we decided to get some chalkboard paint to make a feature of a wooden panel on the wall covering a couple of holes.  We also decided to use it on part of the inside of the door, which meant we needed undercoat (hence, £13 and not £7 for the paint).


Now with added floor covering!

Now with added floor covering!



We have to keep the bikes in there, until we build a separate bike store and I think at the moment it still looks a bit like a shed and not so much like a studio, but hopefully that will change when we move in the wheel, sink, shelves, workbench, etc.

Todays jobs included finishing the floor and the skirting, painting the inside of the door, renewing the sealant on the window to hopefully stop the rain getting in and soaking the window sill, and finishing the painting of the outside.  The outside paint job was a bit tricky as we think there might be some eggs in the bird house – the great tits who hang around our garden at this time of year were going a bit ballistic when I was up the ladder doing the area round the house.  We tried to get out of their way quickly to minimise the stress, so hopefully all will be fine.

It looks VERY shed-like from the outisde, and there’s not much we can do about that, but we’re planning some custom paintwork (and by ‘we’ I mean ‘Mo’)  which will jazz it up a bit.


Not a shed

Not a shed


One of the things I’m most looking forward to about using the studio is the view we’ll have when we’re working in there.  I know it’s the same view we have from the kitchen, but I’m hoping it will inspire our work (which won’t happen in the kitchen till we plant and harvest the veggies) 🙂


Anyway, we’ve finished all the little jobs on the top half of the list that we made, which means that the next stage is moving stuff in.  Unfortunately we’re back at work Monday, so we’ll have to just do little bits in the evenings and finish off next weekend, but I’m hoping by next weekend we’ll be making stuff  🙂

Day 2 update

Just a quick update with pic of the painted ceiling from last night.