I am now fully focused on glaze testing. I will be mixing up 6 or so different glazes for starters. I have ordered enough raw materials to be able to mix up 1500 grams of each glaze (which is not lots, a typical batch of glaze will be 5000 grams). Once I have some test results, I’ll be ordering more materials to mix up the next batches of glaze.
As part of my prep for mixing up glazes, I’ve been organizing my kiln room (where I also store my glaze materials, mix glazes, and glaze bisque ware). During our (seemingly) weekly visit to Home Depot, we picked up some sturdy plastic shelves to help optimize my kiln room organization. Given the humidity and other consideration (termites!) here in Puerto Rico, plastic or stainless steel are shelving materials of choice. I was pleased that the shelves we got fit perfectly on my raised platform in the kiln room. The large buckets will eventually hold the 5000 gram batches of glazes and are at a good height for dipping. And, nothing is piled on the floor. Result!
My plan was to keep track of how much glaze materials I had left using a sophisticated post-it note method (i.e., post-it on each container, noting how much material I took out, subtracted from how much was in it). Nick, my self appointed creative director and COO (Chief Organization Officer) was totally aghast when I shared my plan with him…😉 He had already put together an excel spreadsheet for me with all my glaze recipes (with built in formulas to adjust the amount of each material given a desired batch size, with quantities in both pounds and grams). Now he sat down to create a nifty program to keep track of how much raw materials I have. Boy its nice having a husband who works in logistics!
With Nick’s fancy program, all I have to do is input the quantity of a particular glaze I mixed up and the program adjusts my inventory of each glaze material. Nifty, huh? The program will also let me know how much more material I need to order to be able to “fulfill” a particular glaze batch, assuming my stock is running low. Very clever! And oh so organized! Tomorrow the glaze mixing will commence.
Glaze and storage area: A work in progress!