Thursday, 13 December 2012
Firing with banana skins
A few weeks ago I was reading about Deidre Hawthorne and how she fires some of her pots in saggars using banana skins. As I already use saggars, I was intrigued to try it for myself.
This sake cup was fired to 1300 degrees centigrade in a small saggar with a little wood and the dried skins of two bananas. The result was a rather uniform light grey colour with a metallic sheen..not terribly interesting. On Monday, I refired it in my mini wood kiln to earthenware temperature and this has re-oxidised the surface inside and out, bringing the colours to life. Now the unglazed clay body has turned a deep reddish brown in places, which was more like the colours which Deirdre Hawthorne had said she was achieving with banana skins. The inside is coated with a shino glaze which has turned a beautiful orange colour...dry near the rim but with more of a satin sheen at the bottom.