Hurricane Pottery

How It's Made

How our pottery is made:

  1. The Form is shaped from wet clay - either by throwing on the wheel or by building by hand.
  2. Embellishing - Carving, Piercing, Altering, Trimming, Adding Sprigs or Slip Trails – all of these are done while the clay is soft or leather hard.
  3. Drying – may take 2 -7 days. The humidity and air temperature are factors, as are the type of clay body and the thickness of the clay. The clay must be allowed to completely dry before going into the kiln. If there is moisture left in the clay it may explode in the kiln. The clay also shrinks as it dries, so items appear larger and taller when wet.
  4. Finishing – touching up, smoothing any rough areas before firing.
  5. Bisque Firing – about 24 hours. Ceramic pottery pieces are put into a cold kiln for the 1st firing. The clay is fired to harden it; moisture is removed and the clay begins the transition to stoneware, although it is still relatively soft and porous. The kiln takes between 6-8 hours to reach about 1900° F (1050° Centigrade). Then it takes about 12 hours to cool.
  6. Glazing – Glaze may be applied in many ways, poured on, sponged on, painted on, dipped, and/or sprayed. Only lead free, non toxic glazes are used on our pottery. This process may take a two days or more.
  7. Glaze Firing- 24 hours. The thoroughly dried pottery pieces go into the kiln for a last firing. This time the kiln temperature reaches about 2200°F (1190° Centigrade). The glaze turns into a glass-like coating and becomes one with the ceramic piece. The stoneware clay body becomes dense and vitreous; it is no longer porous. At this point, it is strong and durable, resistant to chipping. Most pieces can be used in the oven and microwave. Most are also safe for use in the dishwasher.
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