Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Trimming

After you've finished making the pot, it's time to trim. Trimming has a couple of different functions. Not only does it allow you to put an attractive foot on the bottom, but it also allows you to take off a lot of excess clay to make your pottery lighter. Also, if trimmed correctly, the groove you put above the foot catches glaze that may run down during the final firing process, and keep it from sticking to the kiln shelf.

Here's a sample pic of the tools you need to do pottery.
Trimming mainly involves the 2 loop tools in the center.

Trimming is pretty simple, but takes a little bit of practice to get it right. First, you need to make sure your pot is leather hard, or half way dry.

Then you place it upside down on the wheel head and using 4 balls of clay, secure your centered pot to the wheel head. Then you're ready to start trimming. I use the square end of the small loop tool most.
Using the loop tool to slice away strips of clay, you can trim away any excess clay you don't want weighing down your pot. Bowls usually take a lot more trimming than a regular pot, because a good bowl is trimmed to the same shape on the inside, as it is on the outside.

Make sure the bottom is smooth so your bowl sits flat on a table.
When you're done, the bowl should have a nice rounded shape on the inside and the outside, with a sturdy foot to rest on.
The next step is to let the bowl dry out slowly, so it can be bisqued.

Until Next Time-
Pinky