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Why Soda Firing

The pots in a soda kiln usually don’t have much glaze on the outsides of them, they are glazed by the introduction on soda ash, which volatiles when it hits the flame and creates a glaze. The flame then carries the soda ash through the kiln and the pots become glazed wherever the flame and soda kiss the pots.

Here you see me spraying the soda ash which is mixed with boiling water, into the kiln at about 2200 degrees.

 The results can be greatly varied with this type of firing. For me, that's a big part of the fun of it. You never know with 100% certainty, what you will get from the kilns.

This pot shows where the glaze hit the surface and really added a nice difference in appearance. The green you see is a spearmint glaze that I used inside the pot and along the rim. The soda mixed with that glaze and made it very dark, almost black in some spots and almost white in others. You can also see where it kissed the shoulder of the vessel and the handles. The orange color is from a flas…

Learning New Words

They say you learn something new every day, or at least you should learn something new every day.  I find it’s pretty easy to do by simply paying attention to things around you, reading books, looking up words you don’t know or making up ones that need to exist.  This weekend when a customer paid with a credit card I swiped it on the card reader on my phone and asked for her “fignature.”  Yes, it’s a new word I just invented.  It means to sign with your finger.

Fignature in Action

Feel free to use it often.  Since I’ve got at least one show every weekend until Christmas I’m sure I’ll get a chance or two to use it.  I hope you all do too.

Check out the gallery page - Future Relics Gallery by Lori Buff


  1. so you use the square to take credit cards? a show every weekend, how much work to you have stockpiled and where and how do you store it all, curious to know as I am just taking an inventory and I see I have to temporarily withdraw work from the gallery to have enough for this Friday and saturday show.

    1. Hi Linda, as a full time potter I am continually making new pots every week so I can keep galleries stocked and keep pots available for shows. I store them in plastic bins in my kiln room and in the house.

  2. thank you. new word to me too.

    fun, knowing I learned it from YOU.


  3. That's a great term, I am sure I will use it!
    We have made the move to square completely. No more merchant account in our gallery. So far we are very happy with it... and have saved quite a bit of money.

    1. Hi Michèle, I’ve been testing a few different card readers and hope to write about my experiences in the near future.

  4. Shows every weekend?! God bless the hard working artists this time of year!
    I traded shows in for retail every weekend, nice mental break in some ways:-)
    Good luck!

  5. I love the new word! I'll be using it this weekend (and crediting you). I use PayPal Here and at work we use Square. For what it's worth, out of those two I prefer PayPal... slightly lower fees and they share customer names, which Square won't do.

    1. Thanks Donna. Good luck in your shows. I’m planing to write a comparison of card readers soon. That’s great input and something that annoys me about square also.


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