How to Make a Purse-Shaped Clay Teapot

Use porcelain clay to sculpt a stylish teapot.

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Materials and Tools:

porcelain clay
slip
rolling pin
pin tool
felting knife
small loop tool
metal rib
bowl of water
potter's wheel
piercing tool
kiln
plastic
glazes

Steps:

1. Roll out porcelain clay until it's about 1/8-inch thick. Let it sit flat on a table or board until it's leather-hard.

2. Cut out a purse pattern freehand, starting with the single bottom and side piece that wraps up to the top.

3. Cut the back and front of the purse out of the clay, matching the seams.

4. Score the edges of the pieces with a pin tool, and use slip to stick the front and back purse pieces together. Press a small coil of porcelain into the edges of the interior of the purse pot to add strength to the seams.

5. Squirt the teapot with water and cover it with plastic. Let it sit overnight so the moisture of the pot can even out over the whole piece.

6. Throw a teapot spout on the potter's wheel.

7. Pull a handle to fit the style of the pot. Leave the pieces out to dry leather-hard.

8. Smooth the surface of the teapot, and straighten any seams with a metal rib.

9. Carve seam lines and stitch-work details with a small loop tool.

10. Cut a lid out of the top of the purse.

11. Attach porcelain balls to the lid to create the appearance of a purse clasp.

12. Once the spout and handle are firm, attach them to the teapot.

13. Carve a plaid design with a small loop tool onto the surface of the teapot. Allow the teapot to dry.

14. Fire the teapot in the kiln, following the clay manufacturer's instructions.

15. Glaze the teapot. Add layers of glaze to the plaid design and stitching to make them stand out. Fire the teapot in the kiln again.

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