Thursday, July 2, 2015

Happy Accidents

Sometimes I could beat myself round the head. You know when you do something very stupid and vow to learn from it? Well, some time ago, I came up with this idea for a pendant/charm that I wanted to make - a calla lily sort-of-a-thing, like these:

I spent several hours figuring out how to form them, then making a batch of about eight. I was mid-bead-making-marathon, so rather than move the new things that I'd spent all that time making out of the way, I put them in a little tray and shifted them to one side of my table. You can guess happened. Some hours later I caught the tray somehow and sent all my hard work tumbling to the floor. Where it smashed into pieces. Excellent. 'What a fool', I thought, amongst other thoughts, 'I won't do that again!'

Recently I started making these cone caps. 

I've since made them in a number of wares, but these, and the first ones I made, were made from porcelain. I'm not sure what I was thinking as porcelain is far more of a fiddle.  Anyway, I made a tray of them and.... 

I really was furious with myself. But when I picked them up I found that only two had broken - and they were a matching pair.  And, with a very gentle bit of hit-it-and-hope, I manage to get the breaks on the two cones to mirror each other.

My sneaky wee inner-goth couldn't resist colouring the interiors red, and giving the outsides a black satin finish. Given what I used to colour them, I expected the black to be totally matt, but I was pleasantly surprised when I opened the kiln to find that the vitrification of the porcelain had turned the surface to something like vinyl, or even leather. This is one of the things that makes me love porcelain in particular. While it can be unforgiving to work with, when it is fired it transforms itself into such a beautiful material, and in doing so it can ultimately be the most forgiving of wares. 

I'm sorely tempted to keep these earrings as I'm unlikely ever to replicate this happy accident. For now they're listed here on Etsy. As for knocking trays of greenware off my desk, I have no doubt I'll be doing that for a good while to come.

Bye for now, Claire


  1. That certainly is a most happy accident. They are wonderful and certainly don't look like an accident!!

  2. I love those cones, Claire! Love love love them!!!

  3. These are sooo cool. What a happy bit of serendipity!