Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Clay Trays for Father's Day

I thought I would show you the clay project Grade 5 and 6 have completed for Father's Day. These trays are to hold every Dad's assortment of coins, keys, phones, etc.

Now I know it's too late for you to do this for this Father's Day but it's something you can keep in mind for next year or you can do a variation of this project anytime.

We completed this project as a class.  Sometimes I set up clay out on tables in our large pod hallways but for this one we did it in the classroom.

I give each student a piece of heavy cotton material to work on.  As well they each get a small cup of water and a wooden skewer as well as tools for imprinting.
For this project they were asked to come up with their own unique design. 

After each tray was completed I set them out of the way on a drying shelf.  I let the trays dry out for a good 2 weeks.   This is always the hard part with clay...planning ahead for sufficient drying time.

I then bisque fire them (cone 4) in the kiln.   In preparation for glazing I brush on a wax emulsion on the bottom of each piece.  This stops the glaze for dripping onto the bottom and eliminates me having to stilt each piece.   You can also use wax emulsion to create interesting resist patterns when glazing.

Before the students start glazing I set out paper towels to work on.  The glazes are placed into paint trays that I use only for glazing with the color written beside....the color you see in the liquid glaze is not always the color you end up with.   I also set out a selection of brushes and water to clean them with.

I then let the students glaze asking them to do 2 - 3 heavy coats.

Depending on how much time I have I may also add a coat of clear glaze after each piece has dried.

I then fire it at a cone 6.  I have another set in the kiln tonight with glazing set for tomorrow...another fire tomorrow night and we'll have made it in time for Father's Day! Whew!


  1. Ooh these look lovely!!

    Would you be interested in being featred in my monthly "Get Crafty"? This month's theme is ManMade and this post would fit really well. I Post a photo, short discription and link back to you for more info? Just let me know in the comments section or send me an email info(at) redtedart (dot) com!

    Here is last month's "Nature" Get Crafty as a reference!


  2. I love these! Wish I had a Kiln :(

  3. I teach a Pottery class for Homeschoolers so I love it when you post clay projects! I'm always looking for new ideas! Thanks for the great ideas!!!!