Slip Casting is central to the majority of shapes we produce here at Aston Pottery. All of our mugs, jugs and teapots are created using this technique. To begin with liquid clay (slip) is poured into plaster moulds. As the liquid in the mould dries from the outside in, the excess liquid is tipped leaving a shape formed by the relief of the mould. Timing is crucial for this stage but the results are always worth it.
In this video we’d like to give you the full tour and show you how a teapot is made. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovxLXEvZeIQ
Jiggering / Jollying
Jiggering and jollying is the closest technique to traditional manufacturing we use at Aston Pottery. Both involve a combination of steel tool and plaster mould working, to form the internal and external profiles of a shape. When Jiggering, the tool creates the outside of a shape, pressing the clay against the mould that gives form to the inside. Whilst when jollying the role of tool and mould is reversed and the case creates the negative.
To see how we create our Pasta Bowls please click on the link below. A Pasta Bowl is made using a Model B. The head of the machine is heated, then a piece of clay the right size for the finished shape is pressed onto the mold and placed under the machine. Together they squeeze the clay out into the desired shape which is then left to dry before fettling and sponging. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O12d4fDEXW0
In contrast to Jiggering and Jollying, Rollering is one of the most modern manufacturing techniques we employ here. A large metal head, heated to 240 degrees, is brought down onto the mould. The machine heats and rolls the clay over the plaster mould forming the desired shape. We use this process for all our plates and a number of our bowls.
Fettling / Sponging
Before their first trip into the kiln our pottery needs to have the rough edges removed. For the slip cast ware a seam is also left along the sides where the mould splits open. The sponging of our products also primes our pottery for decoration, as a rough surface greatly improves the application of our colours.