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Green Crystal Glaze Slab Ashtray

Like many of the slab ashtrays illustrated on these pages, the method of making them is extremely simple for beginners and experts. See the detailed explanation in section #3 called Making Slab Pieces.

This oval shaped ashtray measures 6" x 8 1/2" x 1 1/2" high. On the top view, you will notice a pattern of little triangles. This was a small, square piece of wood with an offcentered "X" cut into the block, leaving odd size triangles on the face. When pressing this into the clay, while turning the block around, it will leave this kind of pattern of little odd shaped triangles.

On the bottom view of the piece, you will notice about a 1" pattern around the entire outside edge. This was made with a wooden "wheel" with many slots cut into the outside edge of the 1" wheel. This puts the pattern of lines as shown. This patters was put on after the top side pattern was pressed in to the ashtray. You must be careful when pressing on both sides, not to erase the pattern on the other side of the clay. That is why the clay must be the proper working density. Too dry and it will crack, but too wet and it will lose it's shape and impressions put on it.

After bisque firing, the green crystal glaze was applied very liberally to top and bottom of the piece. This was a red clay. Note that NO glaze is applied on the "foot" to keep it smooth and flat. Glaze on the bottom of the foot will run, stick to bottom of kiln and other bad things. Don't glaze the part of the piece that touches the floor. Now, with low fire pieces that will be used for eating and need to be washed, they MUST be glazed all over and put in the kiln on stilts. These are little ceramic pieces with sharp nails sticking up upon which to place the fully glazed piece. After glazing, you pop the stilt off easily, and with a high speed grinder, can smooth the little "pricks" of glaze from the bottom. This is the alternative method to handle the foot or bottom of pieces. (Make sure glazes used for eating and drinking are labeled SAFE) (You may want to refer to page on Firing Temperatures and glazes.

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This page created by M.D. Smith and last modified on February 12, 1996 ©