Friday, 20 May 2016

In a slump...

Hi Everyone

I hope you've all been enjoying the sunshine between the showers! This week I thought you might like the instructions for making the slumped pot (as I haven't managed to get the project sheet up on the website yet) that I showed on the DAS marbled clay Hochanda show.

DAS Idea Mix - Red & Yellow
DAS White Clay
DAS Professional Rolling Pin
DAS Metal Spatula
DAS Wooden Tool
Small Plastic Bag
Old Newspaper
Water pot
Garden Twine

Step 1. I used some leftover clay that I had marbled with yellow Idea Mix and white clay using Marble Technique 1 (TMC/0001) and then added some more white clay so that I would have enough clay to create the pot. You can mix some clay using this same technique if you want a more generalised yellow marble background with stronger yellow and red veins on top. Alternatively you can just use some white clay as your base and follow the instruction below.

Roll your base clay out and then add patches of red and yellow to half of it.

Step 2. Fold it in half, trapping the coloured clay in the middle and roll it out again.

Step 3. Use a metal spatula to slice strips from the edges of the clay (straightening up your rolled out clay) and randomly place the strips on the top.

Step 4. Roll it out again to embed the clay.

Step 5. For a larger pattern, fold the clay and roll it out again, repeating as necessary. This will spread the colours and also allow some of the coloured clay that is embedded in the clay to show through. 

Add the 5mm rings to the rolling pin when rolling it out for the last time, making sure to end up with a long rectangular piece of clay.

Step 6. Scrunch up a couple of pieces of old newspaper and place them inside the plastic bag. Wrap the clay around the bag making sure there is excess at the bottom and that it overlaps at the side.

Step 7. Use a wooden spatula to smooth the join down the side of the pot.

Step 8. Fold the clay in at the bottom - first along one edge, then either side and finally the opposite edge. Use a little water on the surface of the clay before folding over each side as this will help the clay to bond.

Step 9. Use the wooden spatula to help smooth the edges of the clay. Then sit your pot on your work surface, pressing down in the middle to flatten the clay bottom.

Step 10. Gently squeeze the sides, pushing down to create folds thereby creating the slumped look.

Step 11. Tie some garden twine around the top of the pot and curl the top edge out in places. Leave to dry.

Step 12. When the sides of the pot have dried (you will see the white clay will lose it's grey look) you can remove the newspaper and plastic bag. This will allow the base of the pot, which will take much longer to dry as it will be 4 times as thick in places, more air circulation to speed the drying time. You should be able to stand the pot upside down too to allow the air to get to the bottom. 

Depending on the room conditions the pot may take as long as 2-4 days to dry out completely on the bottom. For added protection and to make the marbled pattern more vibrant you can varnish it using DAS Vernidas Gloss Varnish.

Top Tip: If you want to make this pot as a water pot or vase you will need to either wrap the clay around an old jam jar or use a clean detergent refill bag stuffed with newspaper as a mould which you then leave embedded in the clay once you have removed the newspaper. In this situation it would be advisable to varnish the clay to give it added protection from any water spillage. nb. Varnishing the clay will not make it waterproof or useable as a vase without a glass jar or strong plastic bag.

Happy Crafting Everyone!

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