How to Make Ceramics

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How to Make Ceramics. The art of making ceramics satisfies your creative needs and gives you an outlet totally your own. Immerse yourself in a fulfilling hobby while you mold clay in beautiful objects to decorate your home. These basic steps will help you to get started.

Things You'll Need

  • Clay
  • Kiln
  • Ceramics glaze
  • Brush

Design Your Ceramics

Buy clay ready for throwing and used for ceramics at your local arts and crafts store. Keep your order small-about 1 lb. at first just to get you started. Take out a handful of ceramics clay about the size of a tennis ball and mold it into a ball.

Mold the clay into your chosen shape as you roll it around. Pinch into the middle of the ball using your thumb and index finger.

Push up as you work the ball around to create a bowl. You are smoothing the outside of the piece into the outer area of a bowl while your thumb and index make the interior of the bowl. Keep the clay smooth and even out any lumps that occur.

Pinch the clay flatter with every upward movement. The turning will add to the walls of the bowl. Continue manipulating the clay until you have the height you want for the sides of the bowl. You should be able to continue to mold the clay until the walls are only 1/4 inch thick.

Flatten the bottom of the bowl by tapping it on a hard flat surface. You want to achieve a smooth, flat surface to the ceramics base so that it will sit on a table steadily when your project is finished.

Fire Your Ceramics

Allow the piece to dry all day in a sunny spot, then overnight at room temperature until the piece is ready for the first firing. You can purchase your own kiln to use at home at pottery supply stores, such as Clay King or The Clay Place (see Resources below).

Fire your pieces at 800 to 850 degrees F in the kiln. You can fire several pieces at once at this stage, so you may want to gather a few in a group before firing.

Brush on a ceramics glaze in the color of your choice. Allow the piece to fully dry overnight at room temperature and fire the piece in the kiln again.

Tips & Warnings

  • If the clay gets dry, add some water and work it into the clay.
  • You can fire more than one piece at the final firing stage, but they must not touch each other.

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