To Kiln or not To Kiln?


So, I’ve been reading up on precious metal clay of late. It’s always been on my list of things I’d like to attempt someday, because the results are absolutely stunning. I also like how it allows you to create your own fine silver findings– ones that are not mass-produced, thus ensuring that your piece will be more unique. I’ve also been reading some of Irina Miech’s instructional books on the topic, and some of the sample projects she walks you through are right up my alley, style-wise. She has a very naturalistic take, and one project even included little faerie faces! So perfect.

Anyway, my two main hesitations have been a) I have never taken a sculpting class and 2) I have no kiln. The first is utterly rectifiable, especially considering my husband, one of my best friends, and a ton of my other friends are trained artists. There are affordable classes around and I am sure to have good tutelage. The second… well, I’m not going to have room for a kiln so long as I’m living in an apartment. BUT! Things, they are a changin’, and now there’s a product on the market called the Hot Pot that will allow small pieces to be fired without a kiln. And what’s better, it’s not exorbitantly expensive. It will allow me to try my hand with small pieces (leaves, there will be leaves!) before I decide to seek out studio spaces where I have the use of a full-scale kiln.

Anywho, that’s where I am right now. I’ve been spending the last year or so branching out into many new mediums, and I love that it gives me greater freedom and more variety in my work. My copper etched pieces are right around the corner, so keep a look out for those as well!

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One thought on “To Kiln or not To Kiln?

  1. I have had great (and cheap!) success with metal clay firing with a torch and a plain old b rick- it might be worth a try before you invest in something more pricy. You have to be patient and careful, but it is simple enough to find a kitchen grade butane torch to use.

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