SDC and Dipping in Blue No’16

Yesterday, The Society of Designer Craftsmen (SDC) opened its doors to its annual show ‘Designer Crafts at the Mall’, at the Mall Galleries in London – see the exhibitions page on their website: http://www.societyofdesignercraftsmen.org.uk/exhibitions.html. On Tuesday I went over to the Mall Galleries for a few hours to help set up the ‘Shop within the Show’. I’m so glad that I went, I met some really lovely people who were very friendly and welcoming, and who also just so happened to be potters! I took the opportunity to pick their brains about glazing and they generously offered me some advice: to invest in some glazing tongs, fettle the glaze once applied and dried to make it as even as possible if there are drops on it etc, slow down my firing cycle and soak the pieces for longer. I took note of all of these points and applied them in my studio yesterday, except for the glazing tongs, at the moment for my little pieces I am using pliers. I can’t wait to see if all these details make a difference to the fired finish of my blue glaze.

With regard to the tongs, SuperDad and I spent a while bashing our heads together to devise a special set of dipping tongs for the trugs with prongs aligned to make the job easier, we’re still in the sketching stage at the moment, but I’ll post a picture when we get round to making them.

So, I had three days in my shedio this week and, along with the usual casting, I did some more glazing. Most notably, I mixed up a new batch of blue glaze, recipe No’ 16 (I have about 23 variations) and dipped some bottles in it. This is my first time dipping in coloured glaze, which was very nerve-racking for an amateur dipper like myself!

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I also dipped a little bowl in the blue glaze – you’ll see in the photos below that I sucessfully dipped it…. and then went on to drop it!! (Note the spiral of glaze on the floor in the corner of the picture), so I touched it up and fettled it back and I’m really interested to see if this glaze will settle and come out smoothly, or whether it’ll be a complete disaster!

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