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Matt Slip Decoration

Slips should be applied to leatherhard pottery or ceramics.
They can be applied by brush, dipped, sprayed or slip trailed on.



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Obtaining Satin Matt Surfaces Using Slips

The outside of the vase has a black matt slip on the the lower body, topped with a matt turquoise glaze. The inside is glazed with a black gloss.

Slips should be applied to leatherhard pottery or ceramics.
They can be applied by brush, dipped, sprayed or slip trailed on.
Because the same clay forms the base of the slip you are applying and we have added a deflocculant, which is sodium silicate, generally you should get a good fit.
Any added oxides will help to flux the clay and possibly develop a low, satin mat sheen.
By using slips, a great many methods of decoration are possible, such as using wax resist or sgraffito, which is scratching back into the slip to reveal the uncolored clay beneath.
A veneer can also be applied to the whole pieces, giving the impression of a colored clay body.

Using the slip method of decorating, it is possible to once fire your work, provided you don't intend to use any glazes.
Otherwise, bisque normally and proceed to add glazes as you wish!
Firing can also be undertaken in any manner -- in an electirc kiln, gas kiln or a woodfired kiln.
Low temperature firing techniques such as pit firing or raku are probably less suitable, because the slip would not contain enough flux to melt suffiently.
You could experiment with adding low temperature fluxes, such as lead frits.

Coloring slips is similar to coloring engobes.
Use the chart below to get an idea of what percentages of oxides to use to get the desired effect.
Stains may also be used, but you would have to experiment with amounts or get the information from the manufacturer.
Where available carbonates can be used in place of the oxides listed below.
These are a bit finer than the oxides, but a slightly larger amount, try 10 %, is generally needed to get a similar color density.
Ball milling, especially if you are using oxides, will greatly help in reducing speckles and obtaining a uniform color density.

Colorant Color Amount (%)
Iron Oxide 2.0
Cobalt Oxide 2.0
Nickel Oxide 2.0
Manganese Dioxide Black 3.0
Cobalt Oxide Dark Blue 1.5
Copper Oxide Mid Green 3.0
Yellow Ochre Ochre 4.5
Iron Oxide Mid Tan 3.0
Rutile Creamy Tan 6.0
Iron Chromate Dark Gray 3.0
Manganese Dioxide Purple Brown 6.0
Fire in Oxidation for the above color results.

Good examples have far more value than good advice.

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