All posts are copyright Barbara Rogers 2018. Please ask if you wish to share, and give attribution to the author.My ancestry and more personal notes are now at a revised version of "When I Was 75."

Sunday, August 9, 2015

The blue that turned out brown

A woman asked me to make a sugar bowl with room for the spoon to rest when the lid is closed.  I had just sold the last one I'd made like that, so I said sure.  She asked for a blue (pointing to a pot I made) and I said sure.  She gave me a deposit, and I made it, bisque fired, glazed it with the blue combo she chose, glaze fired it, and my hopes sunk.

The glaze came out brown.  I must not have stirred up the cobalt from the bottom of the bucket.  I called and left a message on her phone machine, saying it would be discounted if she wanted it, or I'd make her another one.

This is the first time I've had Floating Blue be so thin it turned brown.  However, it must have been the same day I was making the new test tiles, because whenever I had just the Floating Blue one dip, it also showed up as brown.  I think I'll make a new batch of test tiles, though Charles, the studio manager said that one dip of Floating has always been brown.  I've never had it happen, but he showed me previous test tiles that did show it that way.

Anyway, I'll let you know the rest

of the story about the sugar bowl, and the test tiles.
Sian liked it just fine with the coloration.  What is only visible under intense light is that the overcoat of clear (which should have made it brilliant blue) has crazing, which looked great in the sunlight at the Tailgate last week.  She would not take a discount which I offered her either. SOLD!

 Quote for today:

And you will know exactly who you are, forever, by knowing what it is that you love.
Mark Helprin
from Winter's Tale


  1. every firing is different, like the little cut out you've made for the spoon that might work for my salt cellars which I am slowly getting down to the right size. with pottery it's always something isn't it.

  2. Floating blue can be a little tricky.....

  3. We used floating blue a lot at my old co-op. The blue would always turn brown if the glaze wasn't thick enough.
    How great is it when a customer refuses a discount?!

  4. Floating Blue sounds a little like a glaze I have that needs to be re-sieved sometimes to get all the cobalt remixed through.. so lucky the person was happy with the brown as I've heard horror stories of commissions.


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