Sunday, 3 February 2013


Hello Potters and Friends.

Well, despite the freezing temperatures here in Warwickshire I've put on a few extra layers, turned my heater to high, and started the new year with some new work.
As you can see from the post title I've been trying my hand at chattering. I've seen it done, and loved the results, but this is my own very first attempt. So I just had to record it.
This is how it looked on the wheel two days ago.

I am really pleased with this, not to mention amazed. So often I try something technically difficult and have to work at it for several weeks. But my success might have something to do with starting with the right tool.

This piece of metal came from Alan's tool bag. I don't know what it is, and I hope he doesn't need it, but it's a little bit springy – enough to fire a ping-pong ball across the room – but definitely not bendy. A stiff spring is what you want and this is how I used it -;

As the wheel turns – medium speed – hold the metal quite firmly against the clay. You can see that I held it pointing slightly inwards towards me in order to get it bouncing or you could say juddering against the clay. It leaves behind a unique repeating pattern that will be emphasised by glazing.

The bowls I am chattering on are going to be good-sized breakfast bowls with a pouring lip. And to add to the rustic feel, I have given them a rolled rim. This serves two purposes. Firstly, everyday bowls are likely to get chipped, and so a thicker rim gives them a chance of preventing this. Secondly, a rolled rim stops the bowl from warping in the kiln. It also gives a lovely finished look.

So here's how to do it.

With your right hand supporting the side, gently flair out the top with your left.

Keep pushing it round and in – all the while keeping that right hand on the outside.

Tuck that right finger upwards and into the rim. Don't worry about trapping air – you won't.

Finally, use a piece of chamois (or a strip of plastic bag) and finish the job with a smooth rolled rim.

Chattered and Rolled. 

Not only were the pots chattering – my teeth were too!

This was our street about a week ago. View from our upstairs sitting room.

Alan loves it. He can't wait to get out with his camera.

And Rosie's new knitting classes are just the thing for keeping you warm. If you're in the Warwickshire area then look up the Caroline Rose School of Sewing, Regent Street, Leamington Spa, and learn to wrap up warm.