first loading

The week+ it took us to load our new kiln for the first time put our kiln shed to the test: rain, rain, rain. Thankfully, we had 1500 square feet (!) of covered space to keep our greenware (unfired pots) dry. Between the raindrops and thunderstorms, we ferried ware boards of pottery to the kiln, on foot and eventually by very-slow-moving subaru.  (Turns out, 300 feet is a looong walk when there are 700 pots!)

What a joy to be inside the kiln for the first time, getting a feel for the space, assessing the layout of our new shelves. This first kiln loading was a long one for a number of reasons, not the least of which was determining the best use and layout of the kiln shelves we had, and painting every one with kiln wash (alumina + kaolin mixture) to protect them from dripping, melting ash. (A huge thank-you here to our kiln shelf shareholders for helping us purchase all these beautiful new and new-to-us shelves!) We were also cutting posts (pieces of brick) on the wet saw as we went, and pausing here and there to take it all in . . . I had forgotten how much excitement and promise and well, let's face it, tediousness towards the end, comes with loading a kiln. It had been over four years since either of us had last loaded a wood-kiln, and it felt beyond great to be back in the swing.

All said and done, 720 pieces of pottery, large and small, fit onto 121 kiln shelves.  And then we bricked up the door . . .