A major lesson in creating with clay is “Don’t love it too much until it is happy on your shelf.”

The journey from ball of clay to finished product is full of risk. First the bone dry object is quite brittle and it requires a gentle transfer to the kiln after a soft burnishing for bisque firing. Then, if there were no air pockets and there was good contact with add-ons to the piece, the item is a bit more sturdy and ready for glazing. After the piece is washed and the bottom is waxed, a glaze is applied by brush or dipping and any unwanted textures are rubbed out. Finally, the piece is placed in the kiln again for a final firing to 2350 degrees. Along the way, breaks, chips, disjointed handles, S-cracks, explosions, and glaze runs could ruin the piece. 

So, with each handmade pottery item that you see at a local art/craft show, take a moment to appreciate its journey.

Happy creating! 

“Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment. Full effort is full victory.”
Mohandas K Gandhi

I don’t know if you are like me or not. When an idea pops into my head, I think ahead several steps to see: A.) is it something I can do, B.) what is the cost, and C.) is it worth it? This scenario applies to EVERYTHING. It could be a trip, ice cream or redecorating a room.

Some things are more costly in terms of your money, consume more of your time, or affect your relationships with others. Only you can dispense these gifts. It is how you prioritize these gifts that ultimately states the value.

But first I must deal with step A. My hope is that I am not holding myself back by not even getting past the first step of “is it something I can do?” At least I want to give myself the opportunity to try. How can I know if skydiving is my jam if I don’t try? Easy, the cost is too great (life and all that). But how can I know if my heart is best expressed in watercolors (ok, or clay or quilting or cooking or writing) if I never give it that voice? The cost is only a little time and effort. The satisfaction is in the journey.

No more self limiting! What is one creative thing you have always wondered about and never tried? And, really, why not?

I love all things handmade. I respect the work involved in creating a good meal, arranging hundreds of fabric scraps into a warm quilt, and carving a bowl from the old family tree. The time in the creation is the most precious gift.
I have shared my handmade things at craft shows for over ten years. Those who know me understand that my favorite medium is likely to change frequently. At the moment it is clay. There are more steps involved in creating that mug than most realize.

Just coasting

I hear folks who say things like “I always wanted to try pottery,” or “I am just not that creative.” I am a firm believer that you never know till you try. I also believe that there is a creative spark in everyone.
My dream is to offer those folks an opportunity to slow down and give it a try. Let’s get over our 6th grade selves and play in the messy clay and sticky glue again.

Enjoying this journey,
Kelley