Introduction: Ceramic Tea Service

About: I am an artist living and teaching ART in NYC for over 30 years, and I am a CZT, Certified Zentangle Teacher. I love to explore all sorts of art making both in my teaching and in my own work...check out my sit…

My sister is a tea lover so for Christmas this year I have decided to make her a Tea Service. It includes a Tea Pot, creamer, sugar bowl and four cups. It is quite easy to make as long as you have access to a kiln. 

Step 1: Supplies

Clay (I use low fire
white grog that fires to 06) 
All clay and paints must be marked as non toxic
rolling pin
cardstock (to use as template)
clay cutting wire
Clear glaze
brushes etc to use to paint and glaze
etching tool (or sharp pencil to use for scoring)
lg. yogurt container
sm yogurt container
butter container
2oz. plastic container 

Step 2: Tea Pot

Roll clay for the tea pot , rule out a 6X13 piece of cardstock. Use as template and cut the shape for the body of the tea pot.

Step 3: Cylinder

Make cylinder shape out of the slab and set aside

Step 4: Bottom of Pot

roll clay for the bottom of the cylinder. When big enough place cylinder in middle of clay and cut around the base leaving about 1/2 inch.

Step 5: Attach Bottom

Reach inside cylinder and apply gentle pressure with finger tips as you press up the outside edge and attach the clay pieces together. 
When the v
bottom is on move the pot aside.

Step 6: Spout

roll clay for spout, draw out a template, cut spout shape. 

Step 7: Roll Spout

gently turn the clay into the spout shape. 

Step 8: Attach Spout

spread slip (Clay that has been made liquid by adding water, I refer to it as clay glue because that is what it does it glues clay pieces together) 
Slip the narrow edge of the spout and place against tea pot cylinder about 1 1/2 inches down from the top, directly across from the back seam of the cylinder.

Step 9: Spout Opening

while holding the spout in place, reah inside pot and gently push the clay out through the spout to open the spout for pouring. 

Step 10: Spout Snake

roll a clay snake about 6" long

Step 11: Slip on Snake

cover the snake shape with slip

Step 12: Snake on Spout

wrap the snake shape around the spout of the tea pot. This helps hold the spout in place and also adds a nice design to the piece. 

Step 13: Handle

roll clay and cut the handle piece, it is about 1' wide and 7' long. Gently score one end of handle. (scoring the clay means that you make small scratches in it using the etching tool or a sharp pencil also works fine. Scoring it works almost like velcro in holding the wet clay pieces together

Step 14: Handle

next rub slip over the scoring

Step 15: Attach Handle

working along the back seam of the cylinder hold the handle straight up, gently press scored edge near the top edge of the cylinder.
You dont need to press too hard the scoring and slip help hold the handle in place. 
While holding the handle up gently score the other side of the opposite end of the clay piece. 

Step 16: Handle Attach

Turn the edge of the clay and attach the handle to the bottom edge of the tea pot. 

Step 17: Tea Pot Lid

roll more clay for the lid, make it big enough to fit the large yogurt container with the opening down. Carefully cut along the edge of the container. Dont press the container into the clay, it is not a big cookie cutter and if you press too hard the clay gets stuck inside the container. 

Step 18: Tea Pot Lid

roll more clay and cut shape from butter container

Step 19: Tea Pot Lid

score and clay glue the two pieces together 

Step 20: Tea Pot Lid

place the two round pieces together. This difference in sizes causes a little ridge on the underside of the top which will help prevent the lid from slipping off the tea pot when finished. 

Step 21: Tea Pot Lid

place the lid in the butter container with a slight dip to dry, when dry and turned over it will have a slight mound shape. Make sure the larger piece is i
on the bottom. 

Step 22: Creamer

roll clay to cut shape for creamer. This template is 3' X 10 1/2 This is the same template that is used for the sugar bowl and cups. 

Step 23: Creamer

make cylinder and add bottom  (same as tea pot) then directly across from seam, gently press doen the clay to form a little pourer.

Step 24: Creamer

roll a little snake and attach it to the under side of the pourer. 

Step 25: Creamer

roll clay for handle, cut handle size slightly smaller than tea pot, about 3/4 in wide and maybe 5" long
score, slip and attach the same as tea pot handle.

Step 26: Sugar Bowl

roll and cut clay same as body of the creamer, attach bottom, cut two handle pieces same as creamer.

Step 27: Sugar Bowl

attach handles to either side of the sugar bowl, same as other handles.

Step 28: Sugar Bowl

roll clay and cut lid for sugar bowl, same as tea pot lid only using smaller containers. I used a smaller yogurt container and a 2oz. cup. 

Step 29: Sugar Bowl

place lid to dry

Step 30: Cups

4 cups are made same as sugar bowl and creamer, no lid, no handles, just cups

Step 31: Lids

make shapes to decorate the lids. On my sisters tea service I made snow men

Step 32: Lids

any shape works

Step 33: Clean Up

The next day when pieces are "leathery" I clean up all the rough edges with a sponge.

Step 34: Clean Up

Step 35: Bisque

When completely dry bisque fire the tea service/

Step 36: Paint

Using underglazes paint the tea service

Step 37: Glaze

Over Glaze pieces and fire. I use this crazy green color glaze because it is very easy to see any missed spots. It will fire clear and glossy

Step 38: Tea Time

its tea time!

Step 39:

Step 40:

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