Big Ceramic Store Blog

String and Underglaze for Unique Patterns

Every now and again something simple catches my eye and gives me an idea. For example, the other day I was in the studio stringing some coasters together when I saw the string sitting next to an underglaze bottle.

As simple as this sounds... I loved the way the string was just a bit curly, organic, and messy... and it gave me an idea for designing a few pieces.

Here's what I came up with...

I already had an extra slab rolled for a previous project so I cleaned up the edges, grabbed a handful of string, and went to work.

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The first thing I did was lay a piece of string on the clay, then I rolled over it with a dowel rod to impress it into the clay

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Next, I painted the surface with a chocolate brown underglaze covering string and all

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If you notice, I don't mind a bit of streaking in the underglaze, I personally like the way it looks.

The next thing I did was lightly lay another piece of string on the surface and paint a bit of blue underglaze over it.

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The final painting step was to add another string and one more color. I chose a light yellow

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Once the underglaze had a chance to dry a bit, I pulled all the strings off, leaving a unique pattern with various colors in the impression areas

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Ok... now what to do with the slab? Well, how about turning it into a serving dish of sorts? Maybe for fruit or snacks?

In order to protect the surface you just painted, place a piece of clear plastic wrap over it and smooth out all the wrinkles.

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I used a plaster drape mold and placed the clay (glaze side down) over it to shape my bowl.

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Once it was draped, I accentuated the folds in the clay and evened out the placement on the mold

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For the foot, roll a coil of clay and place it in the center of the bottom by scoring and slipping both pieces

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Paint the underside of the bowl with underglaze and let the entire piece dry to leather hard before flipping it over and setting it aside for the drying process.

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One thought on “String and Underglaze for Unique Patterns”

  • Clay Blog Review: August 2017 - Pottery Making Info | http://www.potterymakinginfo.com/news/clay-blog-review-august-2017/

    […] Big Ceramic Store: String and Underglaze for Unique Patterns […]

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