Claire uses Blackwattle Porcelain Paper Clay, Gold or PB103 Paper Clay. These clays are smooth to use compared with other paper clays. However, for the workshop we had success using Keane's No 7. For colour decoration she likes to have a percentage of good quality white slip made with Limoges porcelain (or you could use Southern Ice or Cool Ice) mixed with underglaze colours. The clay stops the colour from peeling off. The ratio is clay slip 1:3 underglaze colour. When applying the colour remember three thin coats are better than one thick coat.
Claire showed us how to make a plate using a flop mould.
First roll a slab of clay on curtain material (with a backing). Alternatively you could use a piece of carved lino or even highly embossed wallpaper to press a design onto a slab of clay to become the bottom of the plate. Drawing is also an option.
Cut additional clay slab strips for the edges or rim of the plate.
Working flat, overlay these strips around for the edges. If using wet clay, water may be enough to join the pieces together, otherwise use slurry.
Add smaller strips of clay slabs to reinforce the base and edges.
Use your fingers through a cloth to round off edges.
Using a rolling pin, roll the joined, flat piece on cloth to further help in joining the edge strips to the base of the plate.
Lift the joined, flat piece on a cloth and invert it onto the flop mould, placing the design side onto the plaster mould.
Using a rolling pin, roll over the joined, flat piece on the mould, cut edges with a needle, always handling the slab with a cloth.
Leave the plate on the flop mould overnight.
Claire showed us an easy technique to do at home.
What you need - a large piece of foam approximately 8cm thick and a smaller, very firm piece of foam for pressing the base of your dish.
From the leftover painted slab we cut out little squares for feet and attached them with slurry to the dish.