Follow these step-by-step instructions to make house-shaped salt shakers using leftover clay from other projects.
Project by Elizabeth Kendall from Vienna, Va.
Inspired by the thought of a fairy house in the woods, Elizabeth's whimsical salt shakers are in the shape of soft little houses. She has developed a clever process to use scraps of clay from other projects.
porcelain clay scraps
bucket of water
assorted glaze colors
1. Combine clay scraps in bucket with water and leave overnight to break down into mush.
2. Whip mush with immersion blender until consistency of yogurt.
3. Add wet bathroom tissue to make thick slip. Paper gives the wet clay strength while retaining flexibility.
4. Pour some slip onto slab of plaster, which sucks out excess moisture and dries the clay into the correct consistency to work.
5. Cut out rectangle of clay. Fold to form house shape. Fold the bottom like a package--bottom bows up to form four corners like feet. Let sit for 15 to 20 minutes.
6. Put house on foam (soft surface) and cut roof lines. Make door and window designs from clay slab and attach to house.
7. Tear strips of clay from slab to form roof tiles. Lay strips on top of each other, overlap and compress gently on the wrong side. Cut rectangle out of the formation to form roof. Attach roof to house.
8. Form chimney out of clay from slab and attach to roof. Poke holes through chimney and roof for salt to come out.
9. Cut circle from the bottom of the house for the stopper. The size is almost the full diameter of a cork.
10. Let dry for a few days. Bisque fire using kiln. The paper gets burned out, leaving only clay.
11. Brush liquid wax on to areas that don’t get glazed: feet and opening for salt holes.
12. Dip house in first glaze color. Let glaze dry.
13. Apply wax to the area that keeps the first glaze color and let sit 15 minutes.
14. Dip house in second glaze. Note that the color runs off the waxed part, which will leave those areas the color of the previous glaze. Let dry for a few minutes.
15. Fire in kiln. Let cool.
16. Clean up feet.
17. Fill with salt and cork.