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  • low or high fire clay body of your choice
  • Appropriate glaze of your choice.
  • Textured Slab Mold of your choice
  • 10 3/4" Salad Plate Drape Mold, or 13" Dinner Plate Drape Mold
  • Fettling Knife or plastic picnic knife
  • Potter’s Needle Tool
  • Wire Clay Cutter
  • Hardwood Modeling Tool
  • Giffin Grip
  • Slab Roller or wood slats and rolling pin
  • Potter’s Wheel
  • Newspaper
  • Scissors
  • Rubber Rib
  • Pony Roller
  • Texture tools (clay stamps, wooden stamps, rubber stamps, plaster stamps, found objects, etc.)
  • Trimming Tool
  • Vinegar or Slip
  • Sponge
  • Chamois
  • Pencil

    Instructions: Make the plate shape

    1. Cut newspaper for a pattern slightly smaller than the Plate Drape Mold.

    2. Roll Slab to 3/8" to 1/2" thickness and large enough for at least one plate per slab.

    3. Place newspaper pattern on slab and cut out plate using a fettling knife (a plastic picnic knife works well for elementary age artists). Save leftover clay for feet (balls of clay for feet by hand) or foot (coil of clay for foot by wheel).

    4. Press plate shape onto Textured Slab Mold with small sand bag using a firm rolling motion from center to edges, all the way around.

    5. Roll the plate shape with the flat roller of a Pony Roller to smooth and press further into Textured Slab Mold.

    6. Bevel edges of plate shape with the curved roller of the Pony Roller.

    7. Roll clay texture worm or other texture tools (wooden stamps, rubber stamps, plaster stamps, found objects, etc.) onto back of plate shape.

    8. Lift plate from Textured Slab Mold and place, centered, on the Plate Drape Mold. Gently press plate shape to the curve of the Plate Drape Mold.

    Make the Feet or Foot of the Plate
    Feet by Hand

    9. Roll four 1" balls of clay, all the same size.

    10. Place the balls of clay evenly on the plate shape on the Plate Drape Mold and mark where they go. Place the feet approximately two thirds to three fourths of the way from center to rim of plate shape. The plate, when right side up, must rest on the feet and not the underside of the plate shape.
    Tip: to avoid ‘tippy’ plate place feet closer to the rim of the plate than the center.

    11. Score both the feet and where the feet go on the plate and attach feet to plate shape with slip or Apple Cider vinegar.

    12. Press thumb into center of each ball of clay foot to make thumb print feet.

    13. Level feet using wooden bat placed evenly (level to table) on feet and gently pound twice with fist in center of the bat and then remove bat.

    Foot by Wheel

    14. Roll 1/2" coil of clay from leftover slab clay or use 1/2" round die in an extruder to get coil.

    15. Place Plate Drape Mold with centered plate shape into Giffin Grip on Potter’s Wheel and score plate shape and coil.

    16. Attach coil to plate shape with slip or Apple Cider vinegar and cut off excess coil with needle tool using a diagonal cut, score and glue attach ends.

    17. With wheel turning, press coil gently to plate shape for secure attachment.

    18. With wheel turning, seal each side of coil to plate using the curved end of the Hardwood Modeling Tool. This procedure is slow and takes many revo lutions on each side to seal coil to the plate shape.

    19. With wheel turning, trim coil to make level foot using a Trimming tool.

    20. Make sure the foot is tall enough for the plate, when right side up, to rest completely on the foot and not on the plate shape. This can be easily checked by placing a pencil on the foot so the pencil sits across the area inside of the foot. There needs to be space under the pencil all the way from one side of the foot to the other.

    21. When plate is firm enough to handle, hold plate, right side up, to curve and smooth edges with a sponge.

    22. Smooth shaped edges with a chamois. A wet chamois with most of the water squeezed out works best.

    23. Sign bottom of the plate with name using sharp pencil.

    24. When plate is dry, bisque fire to appropriate temperature for the clay used then glaze and fire to appropriate temperature for the glaze used.

Even if you are on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there.

Tips - Definitions - Clay Projects - Pottery Gallery - Pottery Tools - Glazes - All About Clay

Have you ever come up with a good idea while working with your handmade pottery and thought that you would like to share it with others? You have? Well, why not send it to us and we will add it to the tips page for all to see.

Handmade pottery can be a very gratifying hobby that produces fun and satisfying results. For many people it's an enjoyable release that is created by working an inanimate mound of clay into a beautiful work of art that you made through your artistic abilities.

The best way of starting out is to take a few lessons from Youtube. You will probably waste quite a bit in materials when you first get started. Figuring out how to truly make handmade pottery correctly and shape into what you want it to be can be quite an ordeal. The different tools that a normal shop will have can be fun to try. You will soon see which ones you like to use the most and then when you are ready you will know which ones to buy.

With the help of the internet, you can now purchase most if not all of your ceramic and pottery tools and supplies online. We are located far from any well supplied dealers and yet working with reliable ceramic and pottery suppliers online has allowed us to recieve most of our orders within a timely manner.

When you get all set up, just enjoy the hobby and have fun at it. Some people get pretty serious and start selling their creations at craft fairs and small stores, but others just like to create items for themselves, relatives, and friends. Whichever kind of handmade pottery you desire to endeavor, enjoy the hobby and have fun doing it.

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