After six days of working in my studio for at least 9 hours a day I was tired. My molds were tired too. I had slipcasted for six days straight, using up about 18 kg of slip that I had to mix in small batches so it wouldn’t settle in the bucket. On the sixth day the molds were so wet, that the clay didn’t release well from them. Therefore I decided to take the seventh day off and do nothing. I now understand why god needed a break after six days of creating ;-P  So with my break ahead of me I am writing this blog entry. Since slipcasting is mostly waiting, I did lots of other things in between filling and releasing molds. Mostly stuff I didn’t like too much, like recycling clay, wedging or mixing glazes. And since I still had a lot of recycle clay left over I threw some more easy cylindrical  mug-shapes and bowls. Since my mom had liked the jungle-mug a lot I wanted to make another one for her birthday which is coming up soon. The bowls I wanted to decorate with the phrase “I’m sorry for what I said when I was hungry”. My hope is that enough people can identify with it and will buy it when I sell them. So today after having cast the last bit of slip there was I sat at my table carving away. The bowls I did finish inbetween casting, but the mugs I had saved for later. I attatched handles in  a few different ways and started carving. The jungle-mug turned out nicely. But since I had so many other mugs and was in the mood for carving I decided to do another door-mug  as a hommage to Kerstin Gier’s book “Dream a little dream” (Silver trilogy). Well what can I say, it was so much fun, that I did several more mugs with doors on them. I like to imagine whom the door would belong to and why it looked this way.



So the last week I emptied my second bisque load. Everything went fine. I found out that I can’t lay down the branches to save space because they will crack. But other than that nothing cracked. I mixed a bunch of glazes that still needed testing, especially the silicon carbide reds I was curious about. So I mixed a couple of variations and tried different grain sizes (4800 and 800). Feet were waxed and glazing began. Thanks to my testtiles I already knew more or less what I was going for. It still took a whole day and some reapplication till I could load the kiln. My iron-red-brown glaze and some others were mixed too thickly and would peel off the pots so I needed to redo them completely. But in the end almost everything fit in the kiln.

Supersaftiges Chia-Kastenbrot

Beim Großputz in der WG-Küche ist uns neulich eine Tüte mit Chiasaat in die Hände gefallen, die seit dem unbenutzt im Regal steht. Denn irgendwie wusste keiner so recht, was man damit anfangen sollte und außerdem hatten wir ja auch Leinsamen im Haus, die ich regelmäßig fürs Brot backen verwende. Da ich aber für einige Wochen eine Low-Carb-Diät gemacht habe ist das Brotbacken auf der Strecke geblieben. Und so hat meine  neue Mitbewohnerin, Meike, vor kurzem ein Chia-Brot gekauft. Continue reading

Pottery Update

Last time I payed a visit to my studio I wanted to finish up all the projects I was working on. I had handles to attatch and teasets to assemble. I trimmed foots and lids and threw some of the biggest bowls I have thrown so far (about 3kg/6 pounds, 25 cm/ 9,8” diameter). Beforehand I had only tried throwing lids that kind of sink into the opening and completely rely on the rim of the teapot to stay where they are. Continue reading

Bread with topping that I don’t wanna call Pizza

The other day I had a real craving for baking. I wanted to bake something salty, non-cakey. That imagination was fueled by the thick bush or basil that has been growing in our kitchen all winter long but never was used as a herb because we lacked nice and ripe tomatoes. I imagined a dough that was spread thinly but had a thick rim. And on the thinner part there should be dried tomatoes (also available in winter) and olives and maybe cheese. Very simple. Not too much topping and still winter-friendly. Kind of like focaccia but with a very stretchy and rather firm dough. It should not be Pizza I thought. It should be a bread with a topping. More like the german Dinnete or Flammkuchen. So no tomatosauce and only very few ingredients. But very good ones at that too. And since I didn’t have to work on the market that friday that I wanted to make Pizzabread without it being pizza I went to the market anyways. This time I was a customer though and not selling the products to other people. Fabio and Meike accompanied me and it was one of the most relaxing mornings since a long time. We spent time having coffee, and checking out good cheeses. I bought a 2 year old peccorino and some mountain cheese as well as dried tomatoes and olives and arugula. The dough I had set up in the morning before going to bike the big route. So there was not much time to let the sourdough develope but since I have a pretty strong sourdough the only thing I was really concearned about was the taste, not the rising action. Though the taste doesn’t matter as much, if you top your bread with strong cheese and other yummie stuff I guess. I used a Pizzaflour I had bought from Adler-Mühle recently. It is a mix of semolina and semolinaflour. The dough gets really stretchy in the making and nice and crispy after baking. Continue reading

Going spouty

The past week I spend almost four full days in my studio. Did go there directly after work on tuesday and stayed till late friday. It was amazing! I managed to throw a teapot and learned that spouts are super tricky, especially the thin part on the top. If you throw it too thin it will twist around itself and though that can look pretty cool it usually is just very annoying. I suspect it is a combination of letting the wheel run too slow, moving up too fast, colaring too much in too little time and throwing too wet/ too thin. That said I produced three to four spouts for one teapot because I crashed one, twisted a second and wanted a fourth just in case something happened to the third. Anyways, I had a ton of spouts in the end but only two teapots to put them on. Continue reading