They say necessity is the mother of invention. Indeed. In glazing for my next firing, I came across two challenges. First, I had my chess set to glaze.
Here they are, all 46 pieces nicely lined up on my mock-up kiln shelf. We decided to glaze them with my most reliable AND favorite glazes (Licorice Black vs. Raw Sienna). But how was I going to neatly dip them in the glaze? My goal was to acheive even coverage (so no half/half dipping and no finger marks). A challenge, no?
“Random stuff kicking around the studio” to the rescue! I appropriated these tweezers for use in my studio ions ago and thought I’d use them as makeshift glazing ‘tongs’
However, rather than using them to grasp the pieces, I stuck the tweezers INSIDE each piece. The resulting tension meant the tweezer held on to the pieces nice and tightly, which allowed me to dip the piece upside down into the glaze.
All in all, the system worked quite well, with only two ‘jumpers’ (both operator error really…) which I washed off and will reglaze today.
The second glaze challenge had to do with a new ‘toy’ I recently acquired. Nick was inquiring whether some of the small items I make (such as pendants or key-chains) could be glazed on both sides. Well, yes, but that require a ‘bead stand’ (the items are strung on heat-resistant metal rods and suspended on the stand so they don’t touch the kiln shelves). We decided this might be a nice addition to our growing arsenal of tools. So how DOES one glaze items that get glaze on all surfaces? I have no idea how folks glaze beads and the like as I’ve never worked around anyone who does (and would be curious to hear!).
Well my solution was to cut up some strong wire…
and create ‘dip and hang’ wire glazing devices. Worked like a charm! :-) If this firing goes as well as all my new glazing adventures, I’ll be one happy camper!