Monday 27 October 2014

mold making class

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A couple of months ago I finished glazing my second batch of pots and drove them out to Homebush Pottery for firing. As you may have seen on Instagram I got there only to find out they had moved to Brisbane. Boo!

I was in a tizz for a while, disappointed and wondering what to do, but then I remembered that Blackwattle Pottery Supplies which I'd visited once before has a firing service too. Its in Ingleburn, a much longer drive from me, about twice as far, but they are so nice there that its always worth the trip.

I'd noticed on their site earlier in the year that they run a few specialised ceramics courses too. And you know I love a craft workshop. I was really interested in learning about mold making which I'd been stalking on youtube so it seemed like fate when my last batch of pots was ready the day they ran the biannual mold making course again. I booked in straight away.

You may not know but lots of ceramics you use every day are mold made. Its one way of producing multipe items the same. And you can make a mold from just about anything, so it opens up even more wonderful possibilities for making.

John and Amanda run Blackwattle Pottery and between them have decades of ceramics knowledge. What they don't know about ceramics isn't really worth knowing. They are also the nicest people and really generous with their skills and knowledge.

There were three of us in the class and we spent the day making molds. Amanda showed us one of her molds and poured it with slip first up. Its a wonderful process which relies on the plaster molds to draw the water out and solidify the liquid clay slip.

After that we brought out the objects we'd brought along to mold and used different techniques to set them up. I took along this little vintage glass milk bottle to use as my mold and we set it up in a little wooden frame using right angle cottle boards. As you can see the other items used different setups so we got to see a range of techniques.

At the end of the day I came home with a couple of molds and lots of new thoughts and ideas in my head. It was really inspiring.

Of course because of our renovation (week 6!) I have no space or outside areas to experiment at the moment, but I did manage to use my mold a few times to make these little ceramic milk bottles. They have been fired once and are now back at Blackwattle for a final glaze firing.

Hopefully they'll be ready for my stall at the Etsy run markets at The Rocks Village Bizarre. This event looks like lots of fun and sees music, magic, shows and markets running from November 7th till 19th December in the magical surrounds of The Rocks.

My stall is the first week, Friday November 7th and I will finally be selling a few of my little ceramics. I'll also have tea towels, prints, cushion covers and more. The markets are on the corner of Playfair and George streets in The Rocks and run from 6.30pm-10. A great chance to kick your Handmade Christmas shopping off with a bang! It looks like there will be lots of fun stuff happening alongside too, so I hope I might see you there.

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