Saturday, July 12, 2014

Baskets, Mushroom and Flower

You wouldn't believe the contortions I went through to keep this driftwood handled basket intact. This basket is about twelve inches tall and six inches wide. It started to collapse in on itself. The strips are thin so the weight of each successive piece added puts pressure on the lower portions. I tried hanging it upside down on another pot and the bottom was pushed off. Then I tried sliding it onto a form and it started to scrape on the sides. Where is my hair dryer when I need it.

You can see I patched it up with some additions. Once I started adding them I decided I liked the patched look so I added more. The top edge folded over so I went with that as well. I'm anxious to see some of these fired. I've been thinking about glazes and also about how the clay will shrink so the handle will extend over the top a little more than it shows in the photo here. We shall see how all that comes about.

For a diversion I made this woven basket. It makes me think of the lattice on a pie crust. I continue to be amazed at what can be done with clay.

Gary mentioned there was an orange and black mushroom halfway down the driveway so I went out there and took a photo to show you. I like the fringed edge to the mushroom.

I noticed this orange flower on the way down the driveway. I think this may be a native butterfly weed.

At the Trash to Treasures sale the past two days we sold about half pottery and half other items. Other items are what Gary calls 'man stuff': tools, road signs, license plates, etc. I notice Gary sells more without me there. Guess I'm good at making and not selling. Ha. Although I think if we're both there we may be talking and folks are hesitant to interrupt. If only one person is there then people tend to come into the booth more often. There's a whole technique and skill to selling, one which Gary is very good at. Gary can just meet someone and within ten minutes a perfect stranger will tell him their whole life story. Gary is a good listener. Today we're finishing up the second half of resealing the driveway and going to the farmer's market. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.


  1. Great way to adapt to the changes clay gives us! Have a great day, and thanks for your wishes for my sale.

  2. I love the freedom of expression hand building clay allows. Your creative use of the driftwood handle is wonderful. I hope you'll share photos of the finished piece. Cindy from

  3. Love the first little basket. It seems the T to T venue is working; that's good.

  4. Hi Barb, thanks, I've been selling a combination of small items and large at my sale, hope you do well.

    Hi Cynthia, thanks, I'm waiting for my kiln wiring to be done so it may be a while but I will post after firing.

    Hi Joanne, thanks, the T and T sale is just around the corner so it's super convenient.

  5. I like your solution for the basket, but isn't it a royal pain when you have to go through such contortions to get what you want? The only way I have ever managed to build cylinders is to do several at a time, go up a ways, cover the rim with plastic, go on to the next.
    We have mushrooms that look like that up here, but the orange flowers are new to me.
    It's great that you have a place to sell that is near by.
    You appear to be settling in to your new home!

  6. Hi Suzi, thanks, I know I should set the piece aside and go back later when the lower portion has firmed up but for some reason I am stubbornly stupid in that regard, perhaps one of these days. the orange flower is good for the butterflies and their larvea as well i think.

  7. Glad you had a good day at the show.
    Love that mushroom - and your basket.
    Good luck with the driveway.

  8. I think blogger ate my comment! Let's try again:

    Try using a small propane torch to firm up work to be able to continue working. Set the piece on a banding wheel or potters wheel and torch it as it turns. It doesn't take much before it is stiff enough to continue working.

  9. Hi Elephant's child, thanks, hopefully the driveway is ok, it wasn't supposed to rain and it did but a while after Gary got finished.

    Hi Michele, thanks, oh I had forgotten Gary has a propane torch I'll have to get him to dig it out, thanks.

  10. I would build slowly so that the lower part is leather hardish before adding more. I would cover only the rim. : )

  11. Hi Midori, thanks, I'll try that next time, my impatience doesn't help. Ha.


I love suggestions, questions, critiques, thanks for your comment