How to Build a Pottery Studio

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A pottery studio can be the perfect sanctuary for artists who enjoy working with clay. From different clays and glazes to pottery wheels, kilns and working tables, pottery can take up a lot of room. If you are serious about building a pottery studio and have an appropriate space such a garage or ventilated basement, you can set up your studio relatively simply. If you don't have a large space that you can dedicate to your studio, you can still build a small working studio in a spare room in your house.

Assess your space and the type of pottery you plan to do. What are your must-haves, and do you have the room for them? If you prefer hand-building versus throwing pottery on a wheel, and have limited space, you might not want to invest in a pottery wheel. If you have a large space and want to create many different kinds of pottery, you'll want to have a working table and a wheel.

Purchase supplies. The essential items you will need are a kiln, a wheel, a working table, a slab roller, hand tools, storage shelves, clay and glazes. If you are looking to save money, you should consider purchasing used equipment. You can get storage shelves at any home improvement shop, and purchase the clay and glazes directly from the manufacturer or a local pottery supply store.

Set up your kiln. This is an important first step because your kiln needs to be in the most highly-ventilated area. Every time you fire pieces in your kiln, it releases toxins. You should never have your kiln set up in an enclosed space. Additionally, most kilns require heavy-duty electrical wiring, like a washing machine would use. If you are setting up a semi-studio in a room in your home, you can opt to purchase a table-top kiln that runs on regular electricity. The downside to this type of kiln is that it cannot accommodate large pieces.

Arrange your workspace in a way that makes sense for the type of pottery that you create. Your pottery wheel should be far enough away from other equipment so splashes and splatters only land on the floor. Your shelving, where you will store your clay and glazes, should be out of direct sunlight and you will want to have access to a sink close by.

Tips

  • If you don't have space for a kiln, look for another studio where you can rent kiln time.

References

About the Author

Based in Miami, Kristen Bennett has been writing for business and pleasure since 1999. Bennett's work has appeared online at MarketWatch, The Motley Fool and in several internal company publications. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in economics from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

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