Monday, April 9, 2012

working in porcelain

Last week we finally bit the bullet and bought another ton of clay from StarWorks. The last few weeks we were mostly using our recycled clay, which is fine, but we need to make pots for raku and there may be too much zella clay in the mix for that purpose. I have been itching for Laguna B-mix these last few months but the B-mix from a supplier near here is more than I want to pay. It was time to try something new so I told Jeff to get 50lbs of a Highwater porcelain for me to try out. . He came home with P-10. 
I started out throwing some mugs, tumblers and small vases. Then gave a couple of other forms a go.  I like the way it throws, it stands up well.

This is a small cupcake stand... it's a trial run for a cake stand. I have made many in the past and have had big issues with warping. I decided to try this method. I should have choked in the middle of the stand more so that it would have a more elegant shape. Next time!

I was surprised how easily I was able to assemble a lidded oval box using porcelain. It was easier to get rid of the "assembly seam" on the top and bottom. I mixed up some porcelain slip and tomorrow I will do a slip trail deco on both the cupcake stand and the box. There is no color in the slip so it will create a raised decoration only. I am thinking about glazing these in Temple white and maybe some sprayed on accent glaze.
The ideal situation for me would be to set up a wheel and tools and use it only for porcelain. I had to clean my wheel and tools before making the switch yesterday. It's either that or make the switch to porcelain only... I don't think I am ready to give up stoneware just yet!!

7 comments:

  1. So funny, your post is the complete opposite of Jen Meccas post that I just read, she is fussing about porcelain and you are loving it:) love the casserole dish, I have never been a fan of owning a cake stand although I think they are really cool, I never have a place to store one....

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  2. Did you throw the cupcake stand all in one piece? my last cake stand was ever so slightly warped and I'd like to minimize that, but I haven't tried it with the white stoneware yet, may give it a whirl one of these days. The only porcelain I ever had success with was cone 10 Windsor which I loved.

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  3. Porcelain is the one high fire clay that I occasionally work with. It feels like preparing for surgery when I switch!

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  4. Linda, the cupcake stand is thrown in two pieces. This time I made the top of the stand much wider to give the plate more area to sit on, which should help with warping.

    Smartcat, that's exactly what I said to Jeff on Sunday, when I was cleaning up to get ready to throw! Never fails there ends up being a tool I didn't anticipate needing and I have to stop and clean it.

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  5. I use several different clay bodies. If I plan things well I clean everything then go from light (Loafers Glory) to dark thinking that I don't have to clean as well going from light to dark. I've considered a white clay set up but it's also nicer and healthier to clean everything now and then.

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  6. I think porcelain is lovely, but oh golly, the way I quick dry everything and abuse my pieces, I have to use stoneware indeed!

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