It's Thanksgiving Day and I'm doing just what I promised myself I would do. I'm kicking back, relaxing and snuggling with my cat. I have been putting DVDs into the player one after another and generally taking it easy for the day.
I think I deserve it. This past season was quite an experience. Business picked up somewhat stronger than I anticipated - which is a good thing. I'm ahead of where I thought I'd be, but to put that into perspective, I didn't think I'd do a whole lot. This is only year two of a start-up after all. But it's encouraging to know that Rowantrees customers are finding me.
We have finally seen snow of a rather serious nature and the temperatures, while still very mild for this time of the year, have started to act less predictably and have dipped into the 20s on occasion. So I had the pipes drained out and figured I would stop production for the winter. Then I got an order. And then another one. And yet a third.
So back in I went - carrying water in buckets so that I could glaze. I didn't mind at all even though it really was getting cold. But now that those orders are finished and on their way, I really do have to call it for this winter. My hands really suffered from working in water under the cold conditions.
I do have a good deal of pottery available and will be putting up an inventory list on the web site over the weekend. This will show exactly what I have right now and in what colors in case anyone wishes to place an order. I can certainly go in, pack something and then send it out. Believe me, it's no problem. I just can't throw or glaze anything until the weather warms up again.
I fired an entire kiln of Ducks Head and Moss Agate this week. Remember what I said about having to learn about Ducks Head (or any glaze for that matter) once it is formulated? Well... I have pretty well mastered the Ducks Head and Turquoise combination. Combining Ducks Head with Moss Agate is another matter entirely. I got what I needed to get out of the kiln, and those pieces look lovely. But a lot of the rest of it will be found on the "Irregulars" shelf next summer. Once the weather warms up again, the tweaking and learning will begin. That's how it goes.
For the coming months, I will be working again on the tile project. I had to suspend work on that to build my stock at the pottery. I started from nothing on that this year once I decided that I could not use the old Rowantrees bisque stock. The labor to replace all of that pottery was pretty intense but that was where the demand was.
Now I can shift gears and work at home. I purchased a small wheel and am putting a bench together for that. The tile press is being liberated from a summer's worth of junk mail and assorted tools, and the extruder will come home again this season so that I can make more napkin rings.
It all sounds like a plan.