Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

Just wanted to thank everyone for visiting our little blog and for making this a great year.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel....2010 here we come!!

John Britt

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Low-fire Casting Slip

Found this while searching craigslist:

"Casting slip for plaster molds. 180 gallons available in 2 gallon boxes @ $4 per box."

This link should take you there. If not, it was posted yesterday "under arts and crafts". It's pretty cheap and I am planning to get save me a little bit :)

Happy New Year!

Voorhees Snow Firing

A Snow Firing

The snow firing of my new wood-fired kiln went well with a Christmas Day opening surrounded by my family. Our official opening happened on Sunday, Dec. 27 when I could gather many of the folks who helped me build and fill the new kiln. Results were better than expected! While I didn't get many pots made for the first firing there were over a dozen potters who had work in it to get it started on the right track. Speaking of tracks, the car released well with only minor opening problems. I have a list of modifications to tackle before our second firing late in February. It will take a few firings to get the hang of using the bourry style fire box to its best advantage and to properly prepare wood for it. My hope is that we can shorten the firing time and even out the temperature a bit. For a full web album of the construction and firing of the kiln go to:

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Studio Liquidation Sale!!

Everything must go---back to the bare walls:

Glaze Chemicals
6 Tile
Alberta Slip
Alumina Hydrate
Barium Carbonate
Barnard Slip
Black Iron Oxide
Bone Ash
Cobalt Carbonate
Cobalt Oxide
Copper Carbonate
Cornwall Stone
Custer Feldspar
Frit 3110
Frit 3124
Frit 3134
Frit 3195
Frit 3289
G200 Fledspar
Gerstley Borate
Gold Art
Green Chrome Oxide
Grolleg Kaolin
Iron Chromite
Kona F4 Feldspar
Laguna Borate
Lithium Carbonate
Manganise Dioxide
Mason Stain 6001
Neph Syenite
OM4 Ball Clay
Red Art
Soda Ash
Soloman Red Iron Oxide
Strontium Carbonate
Tin Oxide
Titanium Dioxide
Volcanic Ash
Yellow Ochre
Zinc Oxide
Zirconium Oxide
Zircopax plus

Miscellaneous other Stuff:

Sodium Silicate pint
Forbes Wax 3/4 gal
Paasche L-sprayer and hose
60 mesh "classroom"sieve
Talisman 60 mesh mini test sieve
Kemper dip tongs
Jiffy mixer
Giffin grip
Large Orton cones, misc quantities from cone 011-11. Total 225 cones

Spruce Pine North Carolina, (1 hour north of Asheville)

Kate Boyd c:828-467-1282

Mark Boyd c:828-467-0580

Electric Kiln For Sale 2009

For sale :

Electric Kiln,
Skutt KM1227, 9.9 cu ft, cone 8, single phase --- Will Sell for: $2,019.60
Envirovent --- $252.12
Shelves and posts --- $363.00

Total for all $2,634.72

Spruce Pine North Carolina, (1 hour north of Asheville)

Kate Boyd c:828-467-1282

Mark Boyd c:828-467-0580

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Wake Up Call

Woke up to this guy pecking at the studio door.

He must have been seeing his reflection in the window and started attacking it.

He may need some counseling because then he would be able accept his ugliness and see himself in a more compassionate way and stop beating himself up!
(Invoice: $100.00
Benefits; Priceless )

John Britt

Friday, December 25, 2009

'It Shoulda Been Me' Revised

Woke up this morning
It's Christmas Day
I opened the cupboard
to put Kline away
and right there in front
Just happened to sit
In all of its glory
An oil spot Britt

'It shoulda been me
instead of the Kline
It shoulda been me
While you reclined
It shoulda been me
Full of Christmas wine'

Then came a rumble
from way in the back
Things started to tumble
and started to crack
A Sheehan and Copus
were charging ahead
It was hard to focus
When one of them said,

'It shoulda been me
instead of the Kline
It shoulda been me
While you reclined
It shoulda been me
Full of Christmas wine'

Now Sheehan you know
you're better for brew,
Theriault is for lemonade,
Tinnaro is too
Britt is for chocolate,
coffee and tea
A Tanner for soup,
or stew with no beef

But when I'm reclining
And drinking my wine
Nothing compares
to the feel of a Kline.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Feel of a Kline

'Twas the night before Christmas
and all through my house
were Rosie's Hanukkah presents
a toy bone and mouse.

And on one of the tables
next to her toy bone
was a cup of Mike Kline's
of my very own.

A Britt, a Tanner,
a Flannigan-Bond,
a Theriault, a Tinnaro,
and the list goes on
of potters whose cups
I have at least one.

But though all the cups
all equally fine
somehow none can compare
to the feel of a Kline.

They each have their form
their whimsy and glaze
They are evenly thrown
and garner high praise.

But tonight as I sit
In my chair and recline
Watching TV
And drinking my wine
The wind is howling
The cheescake divine
Some how nothing compares
to the feel of a Kline.

Merry Christmas.

Hikidashi Shino

Here is another tea bowl pulled at cone 6 from the kiln, raku style.

The funny thing about this is that when I wrote the article on cone 6 reduction firing, everyone wanted a cone 6 shino........well....... as always...there is nothing new under the sun!

Hikidashi shino is a cone 6 shino!

Best wishes this Holiday season!

John Britt

Hikidashi shino teabowl cone 6

After talking with Akira Satake ( during his show at Crimson Laurel gallery in Bakersville (,

I decided to try my hand at Hikidashi Shino, which means "pulled from the kiln".

As you can see below: This is a shino glazed tea bowl which was pulled, with metal tongs, from my kiln at about cone 6 (2200 F).

I set it on a brick and let it cool.

You can also see a photo of the door with the lintel brick spanning the 6 bricks which were removed during the firing.

John Britt

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Snow is Heavy

For all those in Mitchell County, here is the building, which I call the junk building, that is located across from the light on 226 by the P & R. (Near the high school.)

The weight of the snow totally crushed the building!

There are lots of carports and awnings in the same condition .
John (Happy Holidays) Britt

Monday, December 21, 2009

Trail of Tears

While I was away in Dayton, Cheryl tore her knee up. Unfortunately that was concurrent with one of the largest snow falls in Mitchell County.

Well, I came back and had to medivac her out. Unfortunately there was no helicopter so I pulled her on this little plastic sled.

She is alive and well, as one of her friends has connections at the hospital,

John Britt
a.k.a. The Mule

The Colonel Sanders

I was headed back up to Dayton Ohio the other day and stopped in Corbin to see the First KFC.

Worth a visit,
John Britt

Mitchell County 24" er

Yo Clubber's,

We had about 24" of snow here in Mitchell County on Friday and Saturday.

There is something to be said for over building.

That is a lot of snow and a lot of weight on a kiln yard shed roof.

Glad we have the structure to support it!

John Britt

Thursday, December 17, 2009


I have a FREE, like new, small, MP3/cd player radio for whoever wants to come and pick it up at my home here in Bakersville. My new system plays MP3's, so I don't need it. It's only been used a couple of times and is a small unit, perfect for studio or to give to one of the kids.
Just email me or call me and I can hold it till you can pick it up.


Grind Date

I'm not happy about having to grind kiln shelves today, but I AM happy about my new power tool to get the job done right. Sometimes any excuse to buy a new tool is a good one... Merry Cristmas to me! And you too!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wholesale Discussion

With wholesale shows on the horizon, I thought it might be a good time to have a discussion on the topic of wholesaling pottery. I'm particularly interested in how fellow potter's approach it. Here's some key points to consider:
-Minimum $ amount
-Packing & shipping fees
-Minimum $ amount on reorders (do you have one? Are you happy to freshen a shop's inventory with just a few pieces i.e. an order smaller than you'd require for a new account?)
-Variety of wholesale items (how many pieces are on your price list?)

This topic is of particular interest to me:
-what items to wholesale? (Do you have certain items you will NOT wholesale? Do you have a "line," of items you wholesale that is separate from items you sell retail only? Should you keep it real and make what you make no matter if it's retail, wholesale or what?)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

December Clay Club Report

Yo Clubbers,

Had a great time at John's Fun House! He is always the best host. He even had a Hostess who was working to make sure we were all happy.

We did get a bunch of ideas for future Clay Clubs which I will list below. Anyone who wants to host a meeting and pick a topic...let me know and we will get you on the schedule.

The January 13, 2010 meeting is tentatively scheduled at Cynthia Bringle's Studio.
The February 10, 2010 meeting is scheduled for Penland and Susan Feagan will host and the topic will be making cups for the Penland Auction. But anyone can come and just socialize and have fun watching other work.

1. Critiques: Ways to make the critique go better--one piece, invite people to come so we have more victims, have people bring stuff they are working on and are having trouble with/ ideas in progress.
2. Energy Xchange
3. Dance Party/ Mixer
4. Barbecue competition (perhaps at John's in June??) So John can get another port-a-potty.

5. Demos, How to, make brushes, and tools. Tool sharing tips.
6. How to approach gallery's/marketing. How to approach magazines, make successful webpages. ETSY sales, zapplication, etc.
7. Game Party
8. Empty Bowls at John Hartom's
9. Plaster demo (Tom Spleth?)
10. Materials and where to get them cheap.

So those are the wonderful ideas which should last us through the year. Anyone who wants to host should contact me or Emily so we can get the schedule together. The more the better!



Massage Therapist Recommendations?

Can anyone recommend a good massage therapist in Yancey or Mitchell? I have a recurring running injury and a good massage is the only cure. Sorry, I have no gorey pictures.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Chai Pani

Just ate at Chai Pani in Asheville. Give it a try :

Chai Pani

22 Battery Park Ave
Asheville, NC 28801
(828) 254-4003

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Pottery Liquidation Sale

Ian Meares is selling a lot of stuff. He lives in upstate NY but will be traveling through NC for the Christmas holidays. If you have any questions contact him at:

ian meares <>

Ian’s Home and Studio Liquidation sale:

If you want materials please know that I am looking to sell the whole lot of each item so no small amounts please, every thing is reduced from the market price.

Ceramic Materials--

$.30/lb Grog 12-20 mesh 3 bags (150 lb) + 35lbs (in a bucket)
$.75/lb Bentolite “L” 50 lbs in broken out into 2x25 buckets
$2.52/lb Strontium Carbonate Chinese 30lbs in a bucket
$15/lb Deep Crimson Mason Stain 6006 19 lb
4.35/lb Yellow Iron ox- Ferrit synthetic Iron 15lbs
$.40/lb Newman Red 1 bag (50 lb)
$.34/lb Mudux 1 bag (50 lb)
$.22/lb Black Stone ware (Jamaican Blend) 3 boxes (150 lb)
$.26/lb Black Sculpture Body (Black Mountain) 3 boxes (150 lb)

Work Tables--
$25 19x15x27 Sturdy rolling work stand/table
$38 28x12x27 Sturdy rolling work stand/table
$30 20x15x27 Metal expanding typewriter stand

Upholstery Foam--
$20 Slab 36x22x4
$35 Role 75x24x2

I have more pieces that are odd sized and some have also been used in the ceramics studio that are available.

$200 28 position Aluminum ladder
$10 Fluorescent light 4ft 2x
$5 Large clamp lamps with porcelain back 3x
$5 Wooden deckchair (US HARVEST 5034-I4)
$100 Mattress and Box spring (queen)
$ 50 AIWA XR-X7 book shelf stereo

$1700 DEAN Mountain Bike Colonel 22’ Hard tale 1999 (Ti MTB) 22" DEAN Colonel 1999
It has all its full and original components (XT package)
I have ridden it maybe 60 miles. Otherwise it has been in a garage or an apt all its life, it is in great condition.I have striped most of the badges off of it and affixed a few respecters on the fork shoxs and the chain stay it has a clean and minimal look.
It has just been tuned up. DEAN is a Colorado based manufacture of hand made bicycles.
Contact me if you are interested and I will send you images of it.

Art Work-- I have an inventory of my own work from the past 10 years including some of my most recent works

General Studio Supplies-- I have a variety of tools, brushes, buckets, containers, roles of paper that are also available.

And much more that I probably have and that you will have to come and see, just let me know what you are interested in.

Ian Meares
ian meares <>

Erin and I will be in doing a sale in Charlotte on Sunday. If your in the area come and check it out! We're raising some money for charities.

Courtney and John's Online Sale

So, every year we get requests from our friends and family (who can't make it here to see our work) for a way to see and buy the latest creations. This year we're doing an online sale through Etsy (an idea taken from many a clay clubber). Check it out!
Sale starts Wednesday December 9th at 10 a.m.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Kline Moonshine Jug

Just gave Kline the treadle wheel for his little ones and got this beauty in exchange. Still had the corn cob soaked in whiskey,
John Britt

Glaze and Firing Theory Weekend

I am offering a special Glaze Talk Weekend at my studio this Saturday and Sunday, Decemeber 12 - 13 from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. each day.

I will cover as much as possible on clays, glazes, glaze faults, materials, firing, kilns, etc.

It will be a loose, question based format and will cater to the participants needs.

If you are interested email me at:

The cost is $150 and we have several spots open.

It may be just what you are looking for, after all the sales are over. It will get you a head start on all the things you want to do next year and avoid all the pitfalls.

John Britt

Monday, December 7, 2009

December 9th Clay Club 2009

Yo Clubbers,

The December 9th, 2009 Clay Club Extravaganza will take place at John Ferlazzo's Fun House at 6:30 p.m - 8:00 p.m.

The food is .....whatever! ( John Ferlazzo will provide the wings and things.)

There will be a brief Clay Club Suggestion session followed by a voluntary slab construction event and then plenty of food and friends. Also bring a cup for the cup exchange and tool swap!

Oh, I forgot the bonfire... and this time John will specifically try not to burn down the Fun opposed to the last bonfire ....where he did try to burn it down!

This will be followed by a voluntary CARD GAME with a $5.00 entry fee and a game selected by our new ATF Czar, Mark Peters. (He is heading up the Alcohol, Cigars and Gambling division of the Clay Club, Firearms are still prohibited!) The winner of this card game will be allowed to select the charity of their choice, provided they have a 501-c3 designation! The games may extend beyond normal hours of the Clay Club so be prepared with your own fluids.

If anyone wants their name off the Clay Club mailing list or... put on the Clay Club mailing list.... just email me :
Oh, and Emily will show us her recently published NEW BOOK!

Hope to see you there!



Clay Club this Wednesday!

A special holiday edition of Clay Club will meet at John Ferlazzo's Club House this Wednesday Dec. 9 from 6-8pm. Bring a food/beverage to share, a cup to exchange & a tool to swap!
Be there or be a Scrooge!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Pizza Peel

Ann S. brought over her pizza peel (pizza spatula) and helped us make some really fine pizzas.

Unfortunately she then proceeded to start eating all our chocolate truffles and asked us if we wanted some SEA FOOD??!! I thought she meant Anchovies!!

Never say yes if someone asks you if you want some SEE FOOD!

John Britt

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Here is a time lapsed image of the TRAC Sale this Sunday morning.

Hurry over before Will falls asleep!

John Britt

We're waiting for you!

Come check out the new work at the EnergyXchange Gallery. We have a cozy fire, kick ass art, some fantastic music AND tootsie roll pops. Really, you can't go wrong. Six artists in one location! You won't be disappointed. Open to 5pm today!


Pam Brewer animals at Bringle Gallery ... Not to be missed...
Sun. TRAC , Yall come ..

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Rodney Hopkins Wood Work

Rodney is over here doing a carving demo. Stop by and check it out!

154 Sparks Road
Bakersville, NC 28705
John Britt

Friday, December 4, 2009


Here's my dad's eye after a full corneal transplant. Note the stitches. I guess I thought this was appropriate for this blog ever since this post.

Toughest Cat Ever

Tinkerbell is not only cute, but she can kick Boo Boo's ass! She bites the heads off chipmunks and disembowels mice in broad daylight!

Cutiest Dog Ever

Boo Boo is the cutiest dog ever.

"Way better than Kline's mutt", or so says Susan Feagin,

John Britt

First sales of the Tour

Susan , Joy and Will all making sales !

Susan is catching a read of the Rants and Raves while packing,

John Britt

New Oil Spots

Please ! Come over!

We are waiting!

Pottery Buy Feagin

Stop on by and see Susan Feagin's fantastic work!
John Britt

Bringle Gallery - TRAC

OK , Come by .We are ready .. Cynthia -pots and paintings ---Edwina Bringle fiber and flameworked beads -----Pam Brewer .animals -----Kathy Steinsberger -pottery and books ...Plus remember we are open all year ..

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Another Free Wheel

Here is another FREE WHEEL for someone, just in time for Christmas!!

It is a cute little treadle. (maybe good for Michael Kline's littles ones. You could set it up in the studio me and mini-me.)

Come on by and load'er up,

John Britt

Free Wheel

This is a FREE WHEEL to anyone who comes by to pick it up.

It does work and it is BIG,

John Britt

World's Best Potters Setting Up

The world's best potterys are setting up for the TRAC Tour this weekend.

Come by and check them out Michael!

John Britt