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A roller girl with a day job and a pottery studio making her way in the world. :)

Monday, September 22, 2008

So this week...

Well, the Snow Farm Holiday Sale is coming up which means that I have...well the deadline to drop off work is November 1st. So, it takes me at least a 2 week turn around...throw it, dry it, bisque it, glaze it, re-fire it. So I have 2 weeks left to throw for the sale. If you haven't been to the Snow Farm Holiday Sale...get your butt out there! It is so worth it. Glass, wood, jewlery, and of course, lots of fabulous pottery. It is the first 3 weekends in November, so plenty of time to get out there.

But...this is the reason I am having trouble getting out of my bed on the weekends to go to the studio...

And she is purring, an all warm and fuzzy under the blankets next to my leg or my tummy...so cute...little Olive.

But this weekend i have to get a bunch of the stemless wine glasses and the plates for MMO in the bisque either Saturday or Sunday, and then glaze them next weekend. Then maybe she will surrender the sweater to me that we are bartering....I love you Melissa...they are going to be so beautiful!!! And next week I move, so maybe I can get a few extra things done...in between unpacking..yeah...in between unpacking...sure. Oh why am I moving yet again.

No, in pet terms, this is my "forever home". And it has lots of space to store pots!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Saturday Firing..

So, I can't decide if I am happy with this lot of newly fired work. Some dots ran, others didn't. It is becoming a crapshoot with this new style and glazing technique I have been working on. I am trying to get a full body of work together that would present well in a gallery, but as soon as I think I have the whole thing ready...bad firing, handles break in drying, who knows. At this point I suspect elves come in during the night and booby trap the kiln. I guess I could embrace it and say that individuality is the wonderful thing about handmade items. But right now we will settle with a weak hug.

Cruets, my favorite thing in the world to make...my least best seller. Ugh!

Mugs...everyone loves mugs right? Depends on the show. One year, people are "I have too many mugs, I don't need any more", the next year, same show..."do you have any mugs, maybe a whole set?".

Batter bowl. Somehow it warped a little from the weight of the handle when it was firing, so it is a wee bit oval. Go figure.

And last but not least...Tumblers. I use these for everything...coffee(they keep your hands warm in the winter), a vase, pencil cup, knitting needle holder, and if I leave on one my night stand, it becomes a cat dish...I don't know why it becomes so much more appealing to Olive when the water isn't in her bowl, but in mine..???

Monday, September 15, 2008

Open House

The Open House was a great success. A great big thanks to Karen a member of the studio, for helping wrap pots and take cash while I did demos and greeted guests. We had a few people stop by and inquire about classes, and a few interested in renting full time studio space. And we sold lots of great pottery! We are getting plans in the works for holiday sale, but unfortunately I won't be doing any demo's outside in early December...I would be throwing a big white chunk of icy slush. Ouch!

People shopping at the Open House.

KT, trying her hand at the potters wheel.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Damaged Goods...the new line of pottery!

So...all things considered I think this line of pottery will speak for its self. Now i just need to find some plastic rodents or bugs. I was trying to think of a way to make some more "indy" pots. Something a little more fun. And since you can smoosh anything into the clay when it's wet, I just have to start bringing ramdom stuff into the studio that people will be able to identify when they see the profile. Or not. Smooshing is quite gratifying. Now I just have to get my butt in there and start glazing some stuff. The Mrs. Potts, teapots, which have had lots of interest...those need to get glazed and done so I can stuff them in a befitting gallery somewhere. And then I have to start getting ready for Snow Farm.....Oh happy holidays....

Soy Bowls

I scooted in last night and made a few bowls for the snow farm sale. These little guys get "thrown off the hump". Which means i get a big mound of clay, "center" a door knob shape on top,

and then throw the door knob.

You can usually get 12 or so out of a 3 lb chunk. Kinda cool eh..

Okay, today is the open house. We have expanded it, so now we are doing demo's, allowing people to sit down for a minute and play with the clay on the wheel...trying to drum up some business for the studio. And I have 2 people coming by to "interview" for the space as well, for full time residency! Yippie! The little place is growing up faster than I could have ever expected! Next year I will need to rent the space next door, and blow out the wall in between for gallery space over there...or a teaching facility!!! Whoopie!!!
Malea Rhodes

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

A Most Wonderful Thing

So, I was sharing with a friend, KT of www.zombie-hunter.com, how I lost my grandmothers teacup collection over a stupid family feud. Grandma had everything from a tiny plastic Barbie cup and saucer to the only one that I actually got my paws on (its got a raised Chinese dragon on the outside and when you hold it up to the light there is the outline of a Geisha in the bottom). Today I noticed KT left work for lunch and I was joking with her as to where she went. Said she got me a housewarming present and just couldn’t wait to give it to me. She presented me with this lovely iridescent glass cup and saucer to “start my collection again”. There is still a lot of good out there in the world. Thanks KT. You ROCK!!!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

WOW! I want one

Always a sucker for classic cars, this one was parked next door this morning. I would learn how to rebuild engines for one of those baby's! And I know it has NOTHING to do with pottery, but i could sure HAUL a lot of pots in the back of one of these. KT says is a Land Rover Defender 110. Looked it up online they are worth like $45,000 for a '93 model. Okay, so maybe I stick with my Kia. :-) The Kia, she is nice, and roomy...

Malea Rhodes

Sunday, September 7, 2008

I did it and it didn't explode...kinda...

So, after calling the old owner about the strange burnt area on the kiln outlet she reminded me that it blew up some time last year and we replaced a few bits and pieces...so i got gutsy and ran it today. All was fine! except for the 2 pieces that I think someone put on the shelf not dry enough because I heard two pops..which means something exploded. Hey, if it's on the shelf that is for the "stuff ready to be fired", I am guessing it is actually so. Maybe not so much.

Anyway, my Sunday student was in today and completed these mugs! I am so happy. He really wanted to make a set of mugs and he sure did, along with some other great stuff as well! I have always wanted to have a "wine party" where everyone comes with a bottle of their favorite wine, and I make hand made wine glasses for everyone to use at the party and then take home. These may look huge, but they will shrink once they are fired, and they should come out to be good sized stemless wine glasses.
And finally I think I have MMO's sushi plates done! Well, not fired yet as they would have exploded from wetness too. But I tried 3 different ways after the first batch cracked and I have a winner! I actually like these so much I am thinking of making extra for myself. With the rim being nice and high I think it would hold sauce in the plate and not dribble it onto my lap. And the little wavy lines on the outside edge might act like speed bumps for runaway meatballs and such!

That's all for now. I have a first-timer student starting on Wednesday, so depending on his modesty level I might show off some first night pots. And there are bound to be lots of pictures from the Open House on Sunday! And if I know and love you and haven't linked to your blog it is because I can't figure out how to yet....sorry ladies! MMO, CR, Webs, Kirsten, and the Crafty Cat(probably way more too). I will figure it out soon!

The Sparking Kiln

So I went in to load a bisque kiln last night only to discover that there were melted bits to the plug and outlet of my kiln! The seconds sale is only a week away, and the Snow Farm Sale is just 2 months away! Help! Anyone know a great inexpensive electrician. I will have to call Monday and get them out there asap.

Anyway...i was going to fire more of these great mugs this week.

Oh, I guess it is always something. Just when I thought I was breaking even...coming slightly ahead out of the starting gate. Ugh!

I had also been working on these Sushi plates for MMO, but when I went to put them in the kiln last night I realized that all but 1 were badly cracked in at least one corner. So, we will try round 2 today. They were...are going to be a lovely crackel green when they are done...maybe with a hint of a black/brown oxide wash on the sides...maybe a little stripe down one side.....This will work...this will work...I think I can...I think I can.......Okay, so off I go. I have a student to teach there today from 3-5. Today we will be learning the fine art of handle pulling. Lucky him. He wants a set of mugs, by golly I will have him walk out of there with a set of mugs!

And I think I might have a new student starting next Wednesday....keep your fingers crossed. I love students!

Happy rainy weekend all!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

What am I working on??

Okay, so I have been working on a little more streamlined line. No more slip trailing for me! Exhausting and not worth the effort. Took twice as long to make a simple mug, and people don'twant to pay $45 for a coffee mug! I won't pay $45 for a coffee mug!

So, these are unfinished teapots...the lid screws on! I think I will do one in the amber and one in the green.
They remind me of Mrs. Potts from Beauty and the Beast! Then I have some simple tumblers, they are darted on the sides so they fit really well in your hand. These are probably going to go for around $24 And my pride and joy...salt and pepper shakers in a tray! These took forever to make, get the trays to fit...all that stuff. But I am very happy with the results! Might make them in the amber next time.
I have some new cruets, What do you do with a Cruet you say??? I microwave maple syrup in mine! Also good for soy sauce, cream, dressings, olive oil. It's basically a good serving piece for any kind of entertaining. And they are just too cute!

I am going to be glazing and firing this weekend, so look for new stuff...plus butter dishes are getting added to the line! We'll see if they come out decent...if not another item for a seconds sale... oh well.

Friday, September 5, 2008

The Celadon Studio! Up and running...

So, people keep asking me if I have updated my webpage, what does my new work look like, how can they see it...so I am going to blog about it! This way I don't have to worry about taking professional pictures every time I make something new. I can keep my camera phone handy, and keep a sort of online journal of my work and progress in the studio.

We are having a:

Studio Seconds Sale and Open House

Sunday, September 14th

from noon to 3pm.

#38 The Maplewood Shops

Northampton, MA

(its the row of shops right off the South Street Parking Lot, across from the Noho Brewery)

Everyone is welcome to stop by, browse over the work, talk to the other potters and buy some really great hand made pottery from local artists.

In addition, we are taking applications for another member of the studio. We have a space opening on October 1st for anyone local who would like a wonderful place to do their work.
Or, if you are interested in taking lessons on the potters wheel this is a good time to check out the space and talk about available times.

Hope to see you there!