Supplies Needed:

  • Blackjack Tan Stoneware Clay
  • Potter’s wheel
  • Throwing bat
  • Water
  • Sponge
  • Wooden rib tool
  • Wooden knife tool
  • Shammy
  • Wire tool
  • Loop tool
  • Wooden flat ended tool
  • Glaze
  • Brush
  • Kiln

Preparing The Clay


Weigh out desired amount of clay. Prepare the clay by wedging it.
*Wedging is the process of pushing and pressing on clay to expel all air bubbles trapped in it and to bring the clay to a uniform, consistent moisture level.

Step 1


Form clay into a sphere and slam it onto the center of the bat attached to the potter’s wheel.
Wet hands and clay.
Turn the potter’s wheel on and center the clay.

Step 2

Flatten The Form

Using the side of one hand, firmly pull the clay back towards the body.

Repeat several times until the clay is the desired width and thickness.

Step 3

Compress The Floor

Use the wooden rib to compress the floor of the form by pulling the tool across the the clay and back towards the body.

Step 4


Use the wooden knife tool to pull up the sides of the flattened clay form.

Use a wet shammy to smooth the top of the rim.

Step 5


Slip a wire tool under the base of the form cutting it off the bat.

Step 6


Allow the clay to dry to a leather hard state.

Thin the base of the plate using the loop tool in a spiral line starting from the center of the form and moving towards the edges.

Carve a foot ring into the bottom of the plate using the loop tool.

Compress the base of the plate with a flat ended tool.

Smooth the foot ring with a wet shammy.

Step 7


Allow the clay to bone dry.
*Bone Dry is clay from which as much water as possible has evaporated from the piece; if you hold it to your cheek, it will seem dry instead of cold and damp.
This clay looks and feels chalky and is very fragile; it is at this stage that clay pieces are fired in the kiln.

Step 8

Bisque Fire

Fire the clay form in the kiln to bisque fire temperature.
*Bisqueware is an unglazed clay piece that has been fired in the kiln once at a low temperature and is ready to be glazed.

Step 9


Apply glaze to the bisque plate according to manufacturer’s recommendations.

Step 10

Glaze Fire

Fire the glazed plate in the kiln.
*Glazeware is a clay piece that has been fired twice - once in a bisque firing and a second time in a glaze firing; it has a glossy or matte glasslike finish and a smooth texture.