Monday, March 22, 2010

Pasta Textures

Cinderella Vase by Linda Starr
11.5 x 5.5 inches
Stoneware, Cone 10 Reduction

Perhaps you recall this vase I made several years ago? Originally I called it my Castle Vase, but Gary said he liked Cinderella Vase, so that's what I call it. How do you like the texture? Know what it is? I guess the title of my post gives it away. I pressed bow tie pasta into the wet clay. The kitchen is full of items I can use for clay texture, even food.

For the life of me I can't remember who I learned about alphabet pasta from, but I finally found this pasta at the grocery store the other day. So I decided to try using this pasta as a texture in a platter. Except, I didn't think in advance, what will happen to the pasta letters now that I have rolled them into the clay?

Hopefully the pasta letters will burn out in the bisque and then I can use a glaze that will pool into the space left by the letters, like the Cinderella Vase above. The letters are really tiny, I picked out the ones I put into the handles, but the rest will have to stay there. I thought they might pop out as the clay dried, but I just looked again this morning and they are embedded quite deep into the clay.

For these two small plates I used a pinwheel pasta and overlapped the impressions and then I brushed some colored slip and wiped it off a bit. Then I placed them over a paper plate hump mold and added a round foot on the bottom.

I think these little dishes are so versatile and could be used for dessert, as a bread and butter dish, for fruit, cheese and crackers, and on and on. They can stack quite well in a cabinet too. I plan to make more of these. Comments and suggestions are welcome.


  1. MAMA-MIA!
    I think the pasta will just burn away so don't worry about it and just leave it where it is.
    Great idea!
    Pass the sauce!
    I hope all is coming along for the new place and you can share with us soon.

  2. i really like the pasta tray, very cool idea!

  3. Hard to see the texture in the first picture, but I like the alphabet soup texture. I might try something like that in the wood fire kiln.

  4. I have also done the embedded pasta before. My recollection was that they got mouldy, I forgot if I liked it or now. Looking forward to seeing your results.

  5. That Cinderella Vase is stunning. How clever.

  6. Hi Meredith, thanks, less than two weeks and we'll be in I hope. I'll leave the alphabets in and hope they burn out in the bisque, we shall see.

    Hi Kim, thanks so much, I want to use the alphabets pasta for other pieces and thought I would press in words, but the pasta is so tiny I need a miniature tweezers and a magnifying glass to do it, so for this I just tossed them on.

    Hi Michael, thanks, the first vase the texture is a small "X" from the bowtie, I can see it on my monitor, but perhaps I should have made the photo larger, but it takes longer to load that way. I could really see one of your wood fired pieces with the alphabet pasta or others, I hope to see them. Any kind of pasta works pretty well. I look forward to seeing one of your pieces with this technique.

    Hi May, thanks, I hope the pasta doesn't mold, so far it is in the clothes cabinet in the RV and is just dry, hopefully it will just burn out in the bisque.

    Hi Patti, thanks so much. the cinderella vase was made with half porcelain and stoneware clay and was very difficult to construct and not have it slump, warp, or crack. Difficult pieces are really worth trying as sometimes they come out well, so glad you like it. The blue glaze is a celadon and the black is a tea dust and it was very, very high fired - this particular load went to flat Cone 10 which was probably Cone 11.

  7. Linda, your Cinderella Vase is to die for...really gorgeous! I also love your platter...what great ideas you've got...and you make all this look so easy when I know it's not.

  8. Hi Kittie, thanks so much. The platters were easy to make, but I confess the Cinderella Vase was not easy at all. to get the piece to stand, not warp and not crack when fired and then again during the glaze firing was a great challenge

    Hi 嘴巴, thanks so much, glad you are enjoying my post.

  9. seems to me that the pasta would burn out in a bisque although you'll probably have some residue that'll have to be brushed away. in school i did a lot of metal casting and we were constantly burning materials out of our molds

  10. you're so creative. looking forward to seeing how the pasta piece turns out.

  11. If you want to press words into you clay surface look out for a set og printers blocks on Ebay. I have several sets but the best one is wooden. I also found a bookbinders catalogue which showed all sorts of amazing tools for embossing into leather. They were quite expensive but they also turn up on Ebay too once you know what your looking for, the sellers don't usually know what they are selling and call them stamps.

  12. Hello

    Love your Cinderella Vase and pasta tray!! What a great idea! The surface of the Cinderella vase looks very smooth. Is it so? It reminds me of the surface of pearls. I recently ate clams called Hamaguri. They were very large. I'm now thinking of creating shell ornaments. I wish I could paint some of them just like the Cinderella vase!! It is so beautiful!!

  13. Hi Jim, thanks so much. I'lll have to remember to get all the debris out of the impresions so the glaze can flow in there. Metal casting sounds like fun, so much to do and so little time.

    Hi Amy, thanks, we shall see if it is a fiasco or not. If the glaze coveres it up it won't matter, te he.

    Hi Kitty, thanks, I have never heard them called og printers. Occasionally I find letters in an antique store, but only single letters or characters. for the alphabet letters the fun of it is scattering them and having random letters all over the surface, we shall see how it turns out. I'd like to put some on a tumbler and inside a bowl too. I think children would enjoy that type of surface.

    Hi Sapphire, thanks so much. The surface is very smooth, the glaze is celadon and is shiny and transparent. not sure how this color could be achieved by painting, that's the never ending beauty of the ancient celadon glaze over the surface of porcelain or white clay, it gives a lustrous surface like pearls.

    I have made some shell bowls in the past which I must post about one of these days. The other day we went into a place that had a scallop shell frame around a clock, I am sorry I didn't get a photo of them. I just love scallop shells. hum, you are giving me ideas, thanks, good luck with your clam ornaments, I would love to see them.

  14. Not og, but of, sorry I was using itouch technology and I have fat fingers!


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