Seriously - sad day in yarn land - Simply Knitting is shutting its doors - if you're in the area, it's 50% off EVERYTHING (she's selling her bookcases, furniture...everything) so get up there...
This is an extruded form I did last year - it was fired and ready to go when the raku option came around... so i tried it and love the way it looks! I think it might end up being a planter (but I have to line it first)
on to fun news... I got to do RAKU on Saturday in ceramics... this white bowl is approx. 7" dia x 5" high and will be used as a planter. Raku is not food safe, and is not watertight but with a liner, it'll make a cute little planter. I apologize for the poor photos - but wanted to share. What is raku, you ask? Well, once a piece is made and dried, it is fired to ^6 (cone six) which is around 1830 degrees I think - after that firing, the piece is called bisqueware. Then, special raku glazes are addes to the piece, using whatever techniques the artist wishes - and those are allowed to dry a minimum of 24 hours. After that, the raku kiln is taken out (we did it outside) and the kiln is loaded and the pieces are heated back up to ^6 - THEN while the pieces are glowing red hot, the kiln is opened (deep breath; hope nothing explodes from the thermal shock of "normal" air temperature hitting the wares), the pieces are removed using tongs and put into metal trash cans filled with anything combustible - newspaper, straw, dried leaves, sawdust, even vegetable oil! The material burns hard and fast, and a lid is put on the can - the flames go out, smoke billows out, and the oxidation process takes place. After about 15 minutes, the can is opened, the piece removed, put on a fireproof tile, hosed gently down and allowed to cool slowly. In the end, you get beautiful color... it's unpredictable - the colors react with the burning pieces... and chancy - the pieces can break or explode... but it's super fun and felt like Christmas all day long!
Knitting Needle Vase - knitted ceramics - approx. 4" dia x 5.5" high
"Knitted" ceramic platter (flat piece) approx. 7" x 10"
starburst interior with fish scale exterior, hand painted wax resist and raku bowl, approx. 7.5" dia x 3" high
"More Yarn Please" raku yarn bowl (suitable for sock yarn or something small) - approx. 5" dia x 3.75" high
Link Bowl - wax resist and 2 color raku interior, black oxide exterior with raku rim, approx. 7.5" dia x 3" high
And the best for last... Raku Yarn Bowl, approx. 6" dia x 4" high (approx. 4" opening) - this is what the pieces look like... as far as the type of coloring. I am considering putting ALL of them up for sale - so if you're interested in any of them, EMAIL me and let me know how much you are offering - of course, we'll have to ship these (in most cases) so there's that additional cost... as always, a portion of any sales I make from the website go to Living F
in progress.... waiting to get into the kiln!
The survey is wrapping up - final submissions MUST be made no later than Sunday, March 22, 2009! THANK YOU for all the people who have participated - we're at just over 900 (can you believe it?!) responses - all of them valued and appreciated!
The designer David Hayes closed his shop a few doors down from my work in Beverly Hills. He is (according to rumor) one of the original costume designers for the famed TV show "Dallas" - although I have not been able to confirm that... anyway, as I was walking through the alley to move my car, I saw this dress form in the back! I talked with the people there (it was their last day and they were hauling things to the trash) - a small transaction later, I am the proud owner of this oldish dress form! It needs a little bit of work, and I have NO idea what I'm going to do with it (remember, I have a "new" one at home) but it's mine, in my garage and waiting patiently for its new role in my life. I also got some of David's labels and intend to sew one to the back neck of this form to help remember where it came from...
I got a little rough and dirty on the cleaning up of this bowl - took a bit too much material off of the bottom part - but I think it still looks good... we're gonna fire it to see what happens - I may leave the bottom half raw (unglazed) to see what it looks like... maybe just glaze the inside and rim.... any thoughts?
This is probably the best bowl I have done so far - symmetrical and pretty even - and I had just learned the technique of using a chamois on the lip of the bowl to make it nice and smoothe and rounded...
here's the yarn bowl in progress - as greenware and ready to be fired - I am thinking of using the fun Raku glazes and firing techniques on this one since it's for decorative/non food use anyway!
and for those of you asking me about the kitties... here's Wink all snuggled in her bed - I put one of my knit blankets down for her to sleep with... she curls up in a ball on her back and sleeps like this all night long... nothing like a comfy kitty!
Saturday was an all day Ceramics day for me... I'm starting to work on forms for YARN BOWLS! - I am hoping to be able to offer a number of these for sale by the early summer. If you have particular wishes regarding sizing, color, etc. be sure to email me and let me know and I'll try to make one to fit your needs :)
I also started work on an organically shaped "knitted" vase - this piece stands about 14" tall and is highly textured on one side, less on the other (but the same pattern) - I like the feeling this is conveying; marriage of clay and knit.... we'll see where it goes from here. Any suggestions as to what color you might like to see this vase?
Here's my first attempt at a truely knitted "vase" - there are holes in this one where the stitches gap apart... but it should be a great holder for knitting needles! it's drying and waiting to be bisque fired...
And this... ladies and gentleman is a porcelain knitted swatch - it's about to be bisque fired as well - and may end up as a framed piece... it's a test for future projects... but I'm having a great time experimenting...
I have 3 bowls being bisqued right now, and in addition to these pieces 6 more bowls waiting to be trimmed and to go to bisque firing... it was a fun Saturday class this time - quite productive!