Friday, June 27, 2008

Pink loveliness.

Okay. I know I say it a lot, but this piece is so lovely. When I took it out of the kiln my heart was melting. I think I may need to make myself a mug version of this pitcher. And as someone who spent the first 25 years of her life hating the color pink, I've certainly had a change of heart. I guess it's the context that makes the difference and paired with black and white, almost any color can shine.

I've mentioned previously of my love/hate relationship with mugs. In the beginning I thought that I had to make them. Everyone loves mugs. They are an inexpensive, useful yet handmade and special gift for others and a present you can buy yourself and not feel so guilty. And for the ceramics collector, the are another relatively inexpensive way to purchase work by your favorite artist. BUT, they are a lot of work. At least the way I work. Throwing them exactly the same size, painting them, CARVING them(I don't think people appreciate how long that takes), pulling the handles, attaching the handles, firing, glazing, firing again... At first I kept them simple in form, simple carving. But they were still taking time and I felt bad charging a lot and definitely lost money on them. Now, I think I've found some peace...

I'm not going to worry about matching perfectly. They are all the same style. I'm using the same amount of clay for each so they are all similar in height, but not exact. And if someone really wants a matching set, I'll make sure they are the same height, but not exact in shape. They're more interesting that way anyway. And I don't feel bad charging more because more work, more consideration of form and definitely more love goes into these. There are still a few left in the shop from the last batch and I'm working on more.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Time off.

So the show was a success. Beautiful weather and way more people than any other year I've done it. I don't do too many shows. Mostly because I can't stand the packing up and setting up and packing up...routine. And I'm never quite happy with my display. This year I was okay with everything. We had to use our small car because the Outback is out of commission. So whatever we took had to fit in the car with me, Jon and Dudley. 3 tables in the trunk along with a pair of chairs, a box, a few random things. 4 bins in the back seat along with the tent, 3 shelves, some planters that I used to put the shelves on, a couple of bags of random things...That little sports car held quite a bit. So this is what I ended up with...{I'm hiding out in the back}

I wasn't quite finished setting up. Not as many levels as I would have liked, but that would not have fit in the car. I tried my best to not overload the tables. Jon's always telling me less looks better, but if you've ever seen my pots...I kind of have a problem with that less is more thing. I do think it worked though. Apparently I was one of the few that was actually selling work. And I did go home with about half as much as I brought. :)

Since the show I've pretty much been doing nothing. Isn't that great?! I decided to take the week off. Now that only means not making work. That still means taking pictures, posting work, shipping work, cleaning, organizing, computer crap. I did make some time to visit a friend, go to the gym with Jon, do some gardening outside with Dudley, clean my stove...oh wait, that wasn't fun.

I also worked on a fun custom order for some puppy dog bowls. I decided to make a plain set to post in my shop. The first set I made was for Dudley last year when he was a puppy.

His bowls have his actual paw print on the bottom...his puppy paws were so little and left black underglaze prints all over my studio floor :). I got the idea for that when I was doing a workshop with high school kids. One of the girls brought in her new baby hedgehog and was making a bowl for it. He was hanging out on the table while we were working and walked on the black underglaze lid and made little foot prints. I told her to let him walk on the inside of the was so ridiculously cute. I made a lino stamp for my new bowls. I'm willing to do custom colors and names on these. And I don't discriminate...I'll do bowls for kitties, ferrets, name it!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

I'm alive.

Yup, I'm still alive. I know I wrote that I'd be posting customer photos...but that obviously didn't happen. I really don't have the time to do it now either, so they'll have to wait. I've been getting ready for Saturday. I'll be up in Albany for Art on Lark. It should be really great this year. They are closing off the street and vendors will be set up on the street. There's going to be tons of art and music and dance and even a fashion show. If you're in the area, come say hi! I've been firing kilns and packing work...I never seem to think I have enough. I definitely do. I'm waiting on a glaze kiln to cool. It's at 340° and those last 200° of cooling are always the worst...just like Christmas morning. Anyway, I'm on the front page of Etsy as I write this. I think this makes the 5th time I've been on there since my post last week....but I won't bore you with all the screen shots- just the one from today. It's too lovely not to. Thanks riyzedesignz!Oh, and tomorrow I'll be taking down a BUNCH of work from my shop to take to the show. So if there is anything you've been thinking of buying, be warned that it might not come back with me!! And, also a heads up that due to my material prices increasing (just like everything else in the world!!), some items will be going up in price starting June 22, so get them them cheaper while you can! I sat down after my last Bailey's order and did some math...AHHH! With my materials getting more expensive and my electric for the kiln...let's just say I should have increased my prices months ago. I won't be increasing anything already posted except for chicks, square dishes and tripods....the more "production" type items. Sorry!!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


And why am I tired? Well, allergy medicine helps, but really it's just lack of sleep. A few months ago Jon and I were on our way home from one of his shows and I saw that Blondie was going to be playing at UPAC. We got home and immediately bought tickets online. The theater is only 2 miles from our house and that is sooo convenient. It's such a nice place to see shows. We saw the Pixies there a few years ago (a fantastic wedding gift). Anyway, this year is the 30th anniversary of the release of Parallel Lines...and my birth (ha!). If I look half as good as Debbie Harry when I'm 63, I'll be totally happy. The show was fantastic and her voice is still absolutely perfect.
I woke up to a wonderful message from Jan (aka daisyjanie) telling me she featured my work on her fabulous blog scoutiegirl. Thank you Jan! So, go check out her blog and her amazing fabrics in her Etsy shop.
I also had 2 lovely messages in my inbox from customers that just received their orders. It's wonderful when customers take the time to leave me feedback on Etsy, but it's very special when they take the extra time to send a personal email. It really started me off on the right foot in the studio today and got me excited about the next batch of work in progress.
Tomorrow I'll be posting some customer appreciation photos I've been collecting. I LOVE those too. So if you feel like taking pictures of work you've purchased from me, I'd love to see them in their new homes!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

So pleased.

Yes, I am so pleased. I made 4 vases in this style. They are all gorgeous. I used my new green on this one. I thought I might miss my old green....but I don't. This one is glossy and clean and looks stunning with the black and white. I posted this one in my shop today. Be on the lookout for the other 3 in orange, cobalt blue and my new light blue.
Today was super hot again...hotter than yesterday and just as humid. I worked on a set of 8 bowls and some new mugs. I've also been working on some garden markers. I made a bunch last year and they were quite popular. They are made from a very fine, very red, terracotta clay. Still painted black and carved like the rest of my work, but left unglazed. I plan on firing them and a BUNCH of other work on Friday. I'm doing a show up in Albany in 2 weeks. I think this will be my 6th(?) year doing it. Anyway, I'm working on finishing up one more big load of work this I'll be busy....very busy.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Speaking of Pitchers.

Here's a new one...I know I said this glaze was too dark...but there's something about it I really like. It doesn't work on everything, but I knew it would look great on this pitcher, so I made a small batch. I figured I'd keep a bit on hand for when I made a piece that need it. The color on this one is so striking...much more in person than in my photo. I just posted it in my Etsy shop along with a green chick. The very first chick bowl with my new and improved green.

It's about 90º today and sooooooo humid. I went to buy some plants this morning and almost died in the greenhouse. At least I had the place pretty much to myself (because no one else was dumb enough to go there in this heat) and had free range over all the plants. I wanted to plant some flowers but when I came home it started to rain...and thunder. The studio is super cool thanks to the cement floors and small windows, so I did manage to get quite a bit of work done. Now I'm in an allergy medicine haze and too tired to do anything. Guess I'll spend the afternoon making garden tags...

Friday, June 6, 2008

Front page.

Yay! I clicked on Etsy just now to print up an invoice and what did I see?

This beautiful treasury is from Anne at webbpottery. The title was "Hot Jugs"...I love that. It's a nice mix of styles and finishes and included some of my favorites- work by Jenni Brant and Annie Chrietzberg.

Anyway, I went to Bailey's early yesterday and straightened out the cone mistake. I fired her up and now she's back down to 300º. I'll be unloading the kiln later this afternoon and posting some new work in my shop.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


WOW. So I guess it's been a while since I've posted. I've been majorly busy in the studio. I'm actually in a bit of a sour mood at the moment. I was firing a ▲10 glaze kiln this afternoon and I was shocked to hear from Jon that the kiln was off after only 4 hours! I immediately thought "what now?!" but then I remembered that I just opened a new box of cones. Aha! ▲010. Someone gave me the wrong box. I checked my invoice to make sure, and it definitely says ▲10. So that was a total waste of energy. Tomorrow it's back to Bailey's to get my proper cones and then I get to start all over again. I'm a bit disappointed as I had a lot of new vases I was pretty excited about seeing. Now I'm going to have to wait 2 extra days.

I did have work included in two treasuries that made Etsy's front page on Sunday and Monday.

Both yellow pieces. Hmm.

Oh, and I also spent Saturday night putting up some decals that I ordered from Elephannie....I know, a very exciting Saturday night, but Jon's band was playing and I felt like staying in. I had been wanting to do something with the space over my tub for a while now. Our bathroom is HUGE. More than twice the size of my undergrad studio space. In a normal house it would probably be a small bedroom. This photo shows about 1/6 of it.

Anyway, doesn't it look fab?! Our house was built in 1970 and then left unfinished for a few years. The previous owners bought it from the people who built it and finished it themselves. The couple were both artists and that made for some creative touches to the house. I'm particularly fond of the black tub, sink and toilet (right of the tub). Everyone who comes over comments on them. The black and white tiles are also very 70's. We had to re-do the shower stall (left of the tub) and opted to keep the tiles the same...although the original was all white and we added more black. Anyway, I'm totally addicted to these decals now. They were so easy to use and when I'm tired of them I can just peel them off and get something new.