Studio Standards

Pottery goes through multiple stages, from wet clay to leather hard; bone-dry to bisque fired; glazed to glaze-fired and sometimes over-glaze fired before it’s finally finished. That’s a lot of stages. And it requires a lot of shelf space. 

Up until pottery is fired the first time, it can be recycled; and it is our preference to reclaim pottery that’s not fit for purpose as soon as possible and save it from the dumpster—which is where unfit pottery goes after firing.

If our team notices pottery that isn’t going to fire ok, we retire it to a bucket, where it will reincarnate as someone’s future masterpiece. Kinda cool, right? It’s lemonade from lemons. 

In the interest of facilitating as many artists as possible, here are our Studio Standards: 

  • Any individual who is actively infringing on the enjoyment of other artists will be asked to reschedule for another day. This includes taking up more space or time than is available at the tables or on the shelves, disrespectful speech or body language, or not adequately tending to the little artists in one’s care. 
  • Any work that is left to sit for three weeks or longer at any point along its creation journey will be considered abandoned and will be reclaimed by the studio. Yes, even over school breaks. Especially over school breaks. Finish and pick up your work before leaving town, please. 
  • Abandoned greenware (unfired) pottery will be broken down in our clay buckets, like a caterpillar in a cocoon, before transitioning into someone else’s gnomes, mugs, jewelry… 
  • Thrown work which dries out before it is trimmed will experience the same fate. Be sure to trim your work within 48 hours of creation—ideally 24-36.
  • Work that cracks or otherwise breaks during the drying process will join its merry band of misfit friends in the buckets. 
  • Take time to smooth every cut of your clay before placing it on a drying shelf. Items with unsmoothed edges, such as ornaments that were not adequately traced with a sponge or wet fingers, or untrimmed thrown work, will be considered unfit for purpose. Moms, Dads, Steps, Grandfolks: Please work with your little artist to ensure this step is completed before leaving the studio.

Very Important Glazing Tips:

  • Leave ½” bare naked around the bottom of your pottery. This is because…glaze moves.
  • Leave your bottoms totally free of glaze. Then—take a damp sponge and wipe your (pottery) bottoms to ensure they are totally free of glaze.
  • Done? Place your glazed pottery with the clean bottoms and clean rims on the black shelves next to our side door. This is the glazed shelf and where all pottery going into the kiln  for a glaze firing goes.

Holiday Crunch Time Studio Standards: Between November 1 and January 2, we have additional standards to ensure everyone is able to complete their pottery in time for the holidays:

  • Pottery must be smaller than 5x5x5 unless created as part of a specific workshop for larger work (tree luminaries, mini-houses). We can get back to plates, platters, tall vases, and life-sized statues of our pets in January. 
  • Please limit the total quantity of what is created during a single studio session to no more than four items, or 12 ornaments. Sign up for additional studio hours to create more. 
  • Please finish and be cleaned up at the end time of your session on-time. Our studio is small and our seats are booked in advance.

Please pick up the following types of items once bisque fired. They will not be glaze fired: 

  • Items that are smaller than a quarter will not be glaze-fired unless made as part of a specific jewelry workshop.
  • Items that are unable to balance upright will not be glaze-fired. We won’t risk a tip-over and permanent fuse to the kiln. 
  • Items with glaze on or near their bottoms will not be fired. Please leave ¼” bare around the bottoms of all work. 

Both bisque ware and glazed ware have just three weeks to move along in their journey. After that they will become property of the studio and may be used to fund or facilitate our feminist agenda of access, inclusion, and kindness.