Sunday, October 26, 2014

Using Produce Bags to Help Pottery Dry Evenly - Pottery Making Tip

Usually I throw pots the first half of the day, then afternoons I trim and decorate the pots I threw the day prior.    I stand while throwing, so breaking up the day is a healthy balance for me.      

The dry climate in Northern Nevada gives me a lot of control over how quickly I would like my pots to dry.    After throwing my pots I let them sit out until the rims firm up, then I put them in my DIY drying cabinet over night.

Aurora Mugs in process.
This will be my 4th Christmas making them.

The next morning I remove the pots from the bats.   I place them in produce bags rim side down with the bottoms up and open to the air.   The produce bags protect the rims from over drying while allowing the bottoms to quickly dry to leather hard for trimming.

When making mugs,  I trim, handle and decorate,  then place them all together under plastic.  I leave them under plastic over night and it helps equal out the moisture level of the body and handles.   An even moisture level helps prevent attachment cracks.

The following morning I place them upside down on a wire rack and loosely drape a sheet of plastic over the top.    By afternoon I remove the plastic and allow them to finish drying in the open air.

It may sound like a lot of steps, but it's well worth  it.

Happy clay days everyone!

Aurora Borealis Mug
by DirtKicker Pottery

2014 Aurora Mugs will be available for purchase Early December in my 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Loving Fall

I love most everything about Fall.  The colors, the crisp cool mornings and warm afternoons, the beautiful squash and veggies.

I bought a couple organic squash.  A butternut squash and a spaghetti squash.   
I roasted the butternut this morning and it turned out so good.   Here's how simple I make it.
Preheat oven to 400° F.  Wash, carefully slice the squash in half and remove seeds.

On each half, top with 1/2 table spoon of butter, 1 table spoon of Kahlua,  1 teaspoon brown sugar, pinch of salt and lots of black pepper.

Bake at 400° for 1 hour or until tender

Butternut squash is naturally sweet, so you really don't even need to add the brown sugar if you don't want to.   It can be blended into a lovely soup or cubed as a side dish.   For me, just give me a plate and a spoon and I'm in squash heaven.

Since this is a pottery blog, I must add some pottery.  Here are my latest Fall lovelies fresh from the kiln.

Side Handle Soup Bowls
by DirtKicker Pottery

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Fall weekend!