How I Make a Mug


1) Cut and wedge clay

This is remove air bubble and align clay particles

2) Form into balls and throw cylinders (video)

3) Trim & Attach Handle

Once the clay is leather hard (1-2 days later), I trim (video) the cylinders and add handles (video)

5) Painting - I’m painting black slip all over this mug so I can carve it off

Drawing lines with a dulled needle tool

8) Glaze Fire - Here I am loading the kiln for the final firing, to cone 5 or 2167 degrees. Approx 24 hours total

4) Let them dry before painting

Many people prefer carving when the clay is leather hard, which is a healthier solution in terms of dust creation. But I like to wait for my pots to get bone dry before I paint so the tools don’t gauge when I carve.

7) Apply Glaze - Dunk in clear glaze and dry

Completed Mugs!

Completed greenware. Color underglaze is painted on after carving.

6) Bisque fire - These mugs have now been fired for the first time, to cone 04 (1945 degrees) for approx 12 hours and are ready to be glazed once they have been cleaned of dust

Wipe the bottoms clear of glaze, or apply wax resist

Mugs packed in padded envelopes for transport

Our van with extra springs to carry the weight