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OOPS! Turning Trash To Treasure - Salvaging Mistakes - Combination: Article or Project

Suitable glazed item that has misfired or has flaws. Shown was done in white satin, but any will do
Decals (chosen for this project - pale pinks, salmons, blue green tones)
# 2 round brush
#6 round brush
#8 or #10 flat brush for applying china paints
*Water blue china paint
*Blue green china paint
China painting medium
*Coordinated non-fire stains/acrylics:
Used on project shown-Americana paints - Hauser Green, Leaf Green, Petal Pink, Titanium white, Baby Blue, Naples Yellow ,Burnt Sienna and Melon
Mayco Sculpture Paste
Brush on sealer
Glue for glass – suggest one with small tip self-applicator for ease of use
Silver bugle beads - in the bead section of your craft store
Micro pearls or flat pearls - in the scrap booking section of your craft store
Blue green glass - available in the floral department of Michaels crafts

*Choose colors based upon chosen decals

More Details

In all my years as a ceramic teacher, I have had all kinds of challenges. This one made me put on my thinking cap. We started with a glazed vase that had been over fired. UGLY !! I thought about the way that the glaze did its thing and decided it was interesting and maybe it needed a second chance and we could roll with it. The glaze had medium to small oval and circular craters along with a certain uneven wave ‘flow’ pattern . It wasn’t all over, it skipped here, there and again, very interestingly.

1. Pick out a decal with the thought along the way of Shabby Chic - Keeping it in the pale pinks ,salmons ,and blue green. You could use any old ugly outdated decal that still has some nice design element to it for a base and add your own colors to update the look when you paint the colors on it.

2. Two decals were used that were cut apart and placed randomly in areas that were not starved of glaze. See photos. Fire to 016

3. You can skip steps one and two if you would prefer to trace your design from a photo and paint with non-fire paints AFTER China Painting the area around where you plan to place them. See photo. REMEMBER Do ALL firing before painting with non-fire paints.

4. Apply china paint to put a shadow of sorts around the decals. The china paint chosen is water blue with a little blue green added. You only need a very small amount. Use medium in your soft bristle brush and blend china paint. Working from the outside edge of the decal, create darker (but not thick) application closer to the flower and fading out about 1 inch at least. Let the colors fade rather than stopping abruptly. Fire to a 018

5. Use fresh sculpture paste because it moves and you can control it better. Load your brush well when doing your strokes. A #6 and #2 round was used for the application. Be patient because it will take several coats/layers before you will have the amount of depth that you will need. Let paste set and firm up between layers. When doing your leaves, apply strokes in the direction the way the vein lines lay. When doing the strokes for flower petals, lay a good size bead of paste along the flower petal outer edges and use your brush to pull the paste to the center. Don’t over stroke or you will remove the paste and you’ll have to reapply and start again. The center is a series of small dots.

6. Let dry well and then paint. Depending on your color choice, use a small amount of paint that has been thinned slightly and apply as if you are painting watercolors. It is better to have several light coats than one heavy coat. The objective is to keep it light and simple.

7. After the colors are all dry, paint a coat of sealer on the painted parts. Since the vase was previously glazed in satin white, a matte or semi-matte brush on sealer will give best results. Dry thoroughly.

8. Randomly apply the beads and glass using suitable glue. Use your judgment, but don’t overdo. Keep it simple.

9. The base in the photo was just a simple antique type cut glass bowl turned upside down.

CME would like to thank Sharry Lynn for her imaginative and creative contribution of this project for the enjoyment of ceramists everywhere. You can visit Sharry on facebook at:


Article/Project Pictures:
OOPS! Turning Trash To Treasure - Salvaging Mistakes - Combination OOPS! Turning Trash To Treasure - Salvaging Mistakes - Combination OOPS! Turning Trash To Treasure - Salvaging Mistakes - Combination

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