Adventures in Slipcasting – Part 2

I’m no good at throwing the same thing twice, so decided in order to make shot glasses, I needed to slip cast.
(finished cups available on my ETSY Store: FlusterMakes)

My third attempt at a slip-cast mould was a success, but how about the slip?

I don’t have much space in my tiny flat; most of my pottery kit fits into a toolbox, so there is no way I can get a 5-liter container of pre-made slip. Also, I’m a massive bodger, so I just made my own by making clay runny.

If I do it properly, I’m supposed to add a carefully measured amount of deflocculant. Well, we will see…

As I have been throwing and building pots, I have been keeping casts offs and scraps in jars with water. It felt like the right thing to do. So starting with the white stoneware, I added more water and more clay till I got a sort of single cream consistency. No Idea if it would work. Mashed it up with a fork and shook it a lot. LET’S GO!

I was impatient with the first pour, and the mould was still a bit damp, so I didn’t know how long to leave it. In the end, I left it an hour and the combo of damp mould and too long testing gave me slightly too thick walls.

So I blasted the mould in the oven before trying again.

Anyhow, the short version;

  • Dry mould
  • Pour in slip, leave for 10/12 minutes.
    My mould has no neck, so has to top it up a couple of times to keep it level at the top.
  • Invert mould and leave to drip for a bit – 30 mins?
  • Trim the top so you get a nice edge
  • Leave it to dry – in the sun works best.
  • One part moulds, so just give it a wiggle when gaps start to appear around the edge and it pops out.
  • Leave to dry.
  • Clean up and bisque fire before a glaze fire.

Take aways: slip-casting is fun and easy. I needed to clean up the interior of the cups while the clay was wet, because my slip was uneven and lumpy, to fix it, I got me a coffee whisk to mix it better, and I saw a good tip to pour it into the mould through a sieve to keep any lumps out.

Finished cups are available on my ETSY Store: FlusterMakes