Thursday, March 31, 2011

Rossini Festival

Seems like spring is almost here and then there are days like today. But I have the mowers up and running so it cannot be too far off. Quick note today, try to write more over the weekend. Alison and Lindley will be at the Rossini Festival Italian Street Fair next Saturday (April 9). They block off Gay Street in downtown Knoxville and use it and Market Square. Music, food, arts and crafts. She will have her soaps and things and a good amount of pots. Booth # 36, next to the stage featuring pianists, in the middle of it all. Stop by if you can.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Views of the Shop

Spent last week cooking and cleaning. The girls were home for Spring Break and brought two friends who could not travel to their homes, so four college girls for a week. We had a very nice time, took a trip to Cades Cove, but it really gets quiet when they are gone
Here is how the new shop is beginning to shape up.

Still have a few things to build, but it is going the right way. Got the plate rails made, so the slip trailed plates are up with a pair of wood fired stamped ones.

Spring is here and here we go. Still hope to fire refurbished woodkiln in late April. Also we will be doing the Rossini Festival "Italian Street Fair" in Knoxville on April 9. Alison and Lindley will be there with soaps and pots, so stop by.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Table Full O' Platters

Got everything fired in the last week. All the new stuff, and all that old stuff that sits in corners until there are not any more corners, or any room anywhere until you realize your spacious studio is a pathway between buckets, boxes and green ware. So bisque it, fire it, and either it makes the shop or it makes the dumpster go boom. Now its time to fill the shelves with this years work and remember that the wood kiln is coming up soon.

These are some 16" platters that I sliptrail. Always enjoy making them. They will make the shop look good, and offer a higher price point.

Weather has really come around, so if you are in Gatlinburg, stop by. Getting ready for the girls to be home or spring break, so I guess its back the the grill!

Monday, February 21, 2011

"Nothing Says Lovin'...

..Like Something Fresh From The Oven". This fine looking set of oval bakers just came out today. Notice they have a "grill" pattern in the bottom which makes baking fish a little nicer.

Even after all this time I still try different cycles of working to see what works best. Since I have not been firing the wood kiln, I was trying to do a more 7 to 10 day cycle, throw a load, bisque, glaze, fire. Lately it has been drifting to more of a wood type cycle, even though it is all gas fired. Throw a whole lot, fill the shelves, then set up to bisque, bisque, fire, fire til they are all gone. I have fired two *10's in the last two days and will at least fire another Wednesday (maybe one more Thursday if needed). That longer cycle is what I was used to for lo' that many years, and maybe it is still the best for me. Time will tell.

If the slip trailed plates turn out, I will post pictures in a few days.

Shop is getting a crowd as weather lets up. Thanks to everyone for their support.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Rite of Spring

About this time every year, its time to get ready for the upcoming season, so out come the bags, the scales, the screens, the buckets, and the chemicals. I go through all the old glazes, clean and screen, add fresh, discard the old, make some tests, and do an inventory of dry goods. Went to Highwater last week and brought home about 600 pounds of dry goods, so that is set. Decided to move up to these nice 20 gallon Rubbermaid barrels. The old 5 gallons work real well for liners and small dips, but these babies are 16" diameter at the bottom meaning I won't have to be pouring glaze from pan to pan.

Ok, clean up time. Weather has turned real nice, surely the worst of winter is behind us. Wood kiln should be ready for a pre-Easter firing, people are getting out and dropping by the new shop, so here we go.

Monday, February 7, 2011


Progress on several fronts really.
Shane needed his saw back (understandably s0), so with that motivation and a little good weather the kiln rebuild made a nice jump. Got down to the last bit of brickwork, relaid the block steps for both chambers, hauled away some rubble and trash, and broke out the hose to wash things down. The end is in sight, and hope to fire in April as spring comes on.
Hopefully spring is coming. Starting to have a few decent days mixed in with the cold. At this point I would say last winter was worse overall, but the first two weeks this year were tough.
Shop is improving and filling up, please stop by and see us. Thanks to everyone for their support.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Slow and Steady

Always a satisfying moment when you drop an arch form. Never lost an arch yet, but there is always a first time. Back wall is five courses from done and the front-firebox side is close to that since this picture. Still some to do, but got a lot done already and they say this weekend will be near 50* which will be a nice change. Hope to have the first firing in April.
Appreciate the people who have dropped by the new shop in town. Hoping for a good year.