The plates I’ve been working on is moving very slowly. It had been a while since I’ve done a ceramic project. Not that long, but long enough I forgot how long it takes especially when you have limited time each night to work on them. Granted, the first layer was putzy because I had to figure out where colors go and matching them up on each plate. I started the second layer of underglaze and it’s moving much faster. I’m starting to realize these may not be finished by thanksgiving dinner, which is causing slight panic because that means I either need to go buy plates or serve everyone on disposable plates. Oy!
Next week I have some time off to get the house in order and finish up any projects before the big day. But with multiple layers, multiple firings to get these done and dry timing time between layers it will either squeak in at the last minute or totally be a disaster.
I really should’ve picked a quicker design instead of 32 little swatches on each plate. What was I thinking?
I recently realized Thanksgiving is coming up and I have a bunch of people coming to dinner. They won’t be coming for Thanksgiving, though. Instead, they will be coming for Meatballgiving. Because turkeys are stupid.
The plates we currently use were a first attempt at making plates last year. Some are too thick and some are a bit wobbly. I like them, but they definitely are not guest worthy. Plus, I don’t think I have enough of them.
With Meatballgiving quickly approaching I decided to just buy blank plates and decorate them myself. I had previously made some mini mock-ups (see below) and I decided to mostly stick with that. I originally did a mostly toned down rainbow of colors, but I think I’ll stick with solid bright colors. I’ll be keeping the jumbled up rainbow but adding more sections around the rim.
First things first, I created a template with my Cricut. I quickly added some lines and a center dot in illustrator and imported the lines and had the machine cut them out on a 12×12″ sheet of paper.
If your end up being interested in doing a similar plate set, here’s the template you can grab:
Next, I centered each plate on a banding wheel and found marked the center point. Taking my template, I aligned the center dot with the marked spot on the plate.
I didn’t want to use any adhesives which may distort the glazes and do crazy things during firing. So I grabbed a weight to hold down the paper while I make my marks. I then grabbed a mechanical pencil and extended the lead out further than usual so that the lead would slip through the cuts on the paper and hit the plate below.
And voila! I have a dozen plates ready to be underglazed in a bright rainbow of colors.
The template really saved a lot of time. You might think this is a lazy method, but considering these are just the salad plates and not the dinner plates, nor the mugs or bowls that still have to be done… I’ll happily accept being lazy.