7 easy steps on how to make a pinch pot

July 29, 2015

Learning how to make a pinch pot is a great way to get used to working with clay. You’ll also produce some beautiful pieces for your home and as original gifts. These tips will teach you the basics about the process.

7 easy steps on how to make a pinch pot

Easy tips for making a pinch pot

Using your hands to form clay is the most simple and often most satisfying method.

  • Insert your thumb about two-thirds of the way into a ball of clay held in your palm. Gently press the clay between your thumb on the inside and your fingers on the outside. Use all of your fingers, not just the tips, to make the pot even while rotating the ball. An open supporting hand will give an open shape.
  • Once the general shape of the pot has started to appear, use your thumb on the inside to help keep the sides even. Gently run your thumb around the inside, pressing gently into your hand, then continue to pinch out the clay between your fingers­, moving it up towards the rim.
  • Rotate the clay as the pot takes shape in order to keep the sides as even as possible­ — this gives the finished object strength. If it begins to feel unstable, leave it to stiffen up by sitting it upside down on its rim on your workbench for a short time.
  • You can choose to give your pot a rounded base or to gently pat the base on the workbench to flatten it slightly. Alternatively, if the base is thick enough, you can invert the pot and form a broad foot "ring" all round by pinching out the extra clay.
  • To properly form a broad foot that will provide the pot with stability, squeeze the foot ring into a circular shape. Ensure that the rim of the foot ring is the thickest part of the base — this gives it greater strength and means that the finished product is unlikely to ever topple over.
  • For an alternative, add a foot ring by adding two small coils to the base and smoothing them over, or add a small rolled out slab. Make the join secure by roughening up the two surfaces to be joined with a dampened toothbrush. Smooth the join over with a wooden tool.
  • Once the foot is finished, complete the rim of the pot by pinching gently to thin it out. Trim the rim and even it out by cutting with a needle tool but let the pot stiffen slightly first.

Easy pinch pots

You can develop your skills with clay and make unique pieces for home, friends a family. These tips will send you on your way.

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