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192 Jim Boone Rd
Bakersville, NC, 28705
United States


The central information hub for Michael Kline Pottery, a small one man shop of pottery making in the mountains of western North Carolina.

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The Best of Sawdust and Dirt

A record of the goings on around Michael Kline Pottery!

Filtering by Tag: rope impressions

If At First You Don't Succeed , Then Try Again (and again)

Michael Kline

just thought I would share this post from my Facebook Page for those of you who don't subscribe to my FB Page.

 L-R, first attempt to fifth attempt

Sometimes I have an idea and it's seems so perfect and crystalline in my mind's eye. In this case I wanted to make the rope impression on the vertical surface of my tumbler form. But when the idea is taken to the clay it doesn't always work the first time, or the second, or the third time. But that's the inherent beauty of making pots, the pursuit in real time of the picture in one's mind. I have more work and problem solving to do to get there, but that's where the fun is. As Robert Earl Keen sings, "the road goes on forever and the party never ends".

More Comb and Rope

Michael Kline

See this image on Instagram-
previously seen on Instagram

Last night I attacked a table full of plastic, several days of 12's, and finally trimmed these little cups as well as bowls and  plates. I practically ran to my bucket of #6 Tile slip to dunk these. You might call it March madness!

This week is off to a snowy, no-school start, but it feels like it might be a explosively productive one! We'll see!

12x12: Rope and Hump

Michael Kline


self impressioning rope trick

It's funny how questions from last week's symposium in oHIo still echo in my head. It's good to get out and stretch my pottery technique. One of the questions was about throwing off the hump. I don't throw a lot off the hump. Usually I will weigh and ball the clay and go from there, no matter what size, big or small.

But today I decided to throw my 12 morning pots off the hump. I even threw a few small flat bottomed pots, where the cut off is SO important because I don't want to trim these. 

Want to take the 12x12 challenge? It's 12 noon or midnight somewhere in the world, right? 

Here's what to do to win a piece of pottery from me ( I will pick out something nice)
  1. send me your picture of 12 pieces at any stage that you are working on this week. 
  2. send along your name 
  3. send along your website/blog URL
  4. deadline is friday, March 15th, noon ;-)
I will post all of the pictures here on the blog, on Saturday, March 16th.

Sound like fun? To see what all of this is about refer to this blog post  from 2010. 

This is going to be fun!

email your pics to me here.

Funny Numbers and Fresh Clay

Michael Kline

I'm a bit behind reporting on the happenings leading up to the next firing and the Cousins in Clay reunion, but here goes in a matter of a few photos!

I was happy and a bit overwhelmed to have two helpers yesterday, my intern Adam MacKay and his partner Molly Belada. Molly and Adam are undergrad ceramics majors at App State, in Boone. Adam has been helping me every week and Molly has been helping my neighbor, Courtney. After some number crunching and clay body calc, we set up the mixing area where I proceeded to find not one, but two wasp nests in two open bags of clay. Ouch. After some thorough paranoia and nest removal M and A mixed up enough of the fireclay mix that will be added to my red dirt in a week or so (I hope!)

The girls came up with a friend to make some pots (read: show off their pottery skills to their friend) but their wheel was covered with reclaim clay, so I set up my Shimpo banding wheel and hand turned it for them. It was just the thing and soon they were off to the woods to do some exploring and I was back to work.

I'm managing to get some nice pots made in and around carrying out final plans for next months Cousins in Clay Show. There's a lot to do but I'm so looking forward to seeing my old buds, Mark Shapiro and Sam Taylor, and all the pots they will be bringing. Check out our Facebook page to find out more.

OK, time for some lunch, then more pottery this afternoon.