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Ground Breaking

Reuse, recycle, reduce. We hear these ideas all the time and I tend to think they are good ones. It comes in especially great when someone gives me an old kiln.  That is exactly what happened when the electric kiln that we used for cone 6 glaze firing gave up the ghost at Callanwolde. It’s a good size kiln, much bigger than my electric kiln but I’m not interested in rewiring this one. You may remember I did that with my electric kiln when I installed the kiln sitter (you can read about that here) which I got from another free kiln.

My plan for this kiln is to make it a reduction kiln since that is the look I like best for my pots. I am even considering adding a stoke hole so I can feed some small piece of wood into the kiln for some ash and wood effects.

Before I can start converting it into a gas kiln I need to build a kiln shed. My current kiln room is fine for the electric kiln but it’s too crowded to add flame to the mix. I’m designing a simple lean-to type shed that will have a m…


I love making these little soap or sponge holders. I also love coming up with new ideas for them.

These pandas are the latest idea to come into my head. I made them a few weeks ago and just now got them out of the kiln so I don't even remember what was the biggest inspiration in making these guys.

Panda Soap Holders

Of course, I do love panda bears. They are pretty and fun to watch. They are also endangered so Zoo Atlanta and several other zoos have started a program to help keep them alive. Several pandas have been successfully born in captivity and Zoo Atlanta has given the first twin pandas ever born in captivity to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in China. You can read more about that here:

Many years ago I did a little behind the scenes tour of the panda area of the zoo and was even able to feed the pandas a few cookies. As cute and cuddly as they look in pictures up close it's clear that they are large bears with large teeth and claws. Real pandas can hurt you, these soap holders, on the other hand, will simply hold your soap or sponge or whatever else you want to put in them.

(via Instagram


  1. your pandas are very cute... nice to have been able to meet the real ones though.

    1. Thanks Anna.
      Yes, that was very cool.

  2. Cuties!
    Pandas are not quite in the same category as Polar Bears who also look cute and cuddly, but are not vegetarians!
    Thanks for the link.

    1. Thanks S.
      You’re right, Pandas eat mostly bamboo.


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