Sunday, 15 May 2011

New bird decorations

I'm very excited about my new bird decorations I have been designing ! I thought I would show you the making process from start to finish ,there are a lot of stages and they are quite time consuming but worth it for the finished result ! First I have rolled out the clay and cut out the shapes with a cardboard template I designed.The edges are smoothed and sponged for a good finish . Also I have added some impressed decoration with stamps that I have made .
Next I have attached a paper wing and stuck it down with water ,which will act as a resist when slip is painted on .
Various coloured slips are then applied and the paper resist is then carefully removed .

More impressed decoration is added using a metal tool to give the effect of stitching around the wing. White spots are added using a slip trailer ,which is a bit like an icing bag .
The birds are then left to completely dry out ready for the first biscuit firing .
Here are the birds after being biscuit fired .

The birds are now dipped in a transparent glaze ready for firing.
They are carefully placed in the kiln not touching so they don't stick together. They are fired again which takes a whole day to reach the right temperature ,then another 8-12 hours to cool down .
This is the most exciting bit about pottery ,opening the kiln . I have been doing this a long time and it still is a thrill to see how the work looks finished !

Some for the birds are turned into hanging decorations and some I have tried as decorations on sticks for putting in plant pots .

Really pleased with these new designs ,hope you like them too !

I'd love to hear what you think too !
P.s These are my own designs and they have taken a lot of work to get right so kindly please don't copy these images or designs to sell Thanks!
I am busy working on some new ceramic designs using more coloured slips and some more burnished smoke-fired pieces for an open studios week in June . Will be taking lots of photos
along the way and look forward to sharing them soon xx

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

new crochet project

I have been playing around with a few different granny square patterns using some lovely coloured King Cole Bamboo cotton I had .
I have been inspired by a great crochet blog MeMeRose .She is making a spring blanket with a lovely pastel colour palette . Having some time off over Easter hols from the usual busy making of the clay variety I had some fun with some crocheting.
I decided to make a large spring blanket of my own .I am using Stylecraft Special which has a good colour range for a more budget wool , as it's going to take alot of wool !!Here are the colours I am using.

I make the coloured centres first then do the white border and join as I go with a method of joining with a slip stitch instead of a chain between each cluster (find this on Attic24 blog).This method is great as the blanket grows as you make rather than all that sewing together at the end!

Here is a sneak preview of the first section I have completed ,it is 10 x 5 squares which is an 1/8th of the whole blanket which is abit daunting!!

I'm really pleased with how the colours look together ,I hope I have the staying power to finish the whole blanket ....