I have been putting off making mugs because I have struggled so with making handles. It has been FIVE years since I made a mug. Well, I wanted to start making them again but wanted to learn whether or not there was a tool available for making handles verses pulling them by hand from a lump of clay. I googled: ‘Tool used for making handles for mugs’. There is a tool for that!!!! So, I bought it!
“The Kemper HM2 Mug Handle Maker is made with stainless steel ends firmly set in smooth hardwood handles. Make handles for mugs with the Kemper HM2. When drawn through a slab of clay, this tool will form a perfectly-shaped strip that you can cut to the correct length and attach to a ceramic piece.” BigCeramicStore.com
I bought the Kemper HM2 Mug Handle Maker but it was too small. Personally, I like a big handle on my mug . . . bigger than what the HM2 would make so I bought the Kemper HM1 Pitcher Handle Maker and I’m much happier with that size handle.
Pictured on top is the Kemper HM1 Pitcher Handle maker which I found much more suitable for mugs than the Kemper HM2 Mug Handle maker pictured on the bottom. Both, however, do make nice handles by pulling them through a brick of clay . . .with lots of practice! 😉 Still, easier for me than pulling my handles from a lump of clay
Another mug saver is a damp box which I read about here.
“Anyone who has worked with clay knows there is a lot of process involved. Certain things need to be done at certain times. But what do you do if your time and the clay’s time aren’t in sync? ” Meagan Chaney Gumpert
Timing is everything when adding handles to mugs. Both mug and handle have to be at the right dampness. Not too wet. Not too dry. And then, once the mug and handles are attached to each other, they must dry slowly. Not too fast. Not too slow. Otherwise, cracks happen. 😦
My work this morning! The mug pictured on the right has been in my damp box for over two weeks. It wasn’t until this past weekend that I made a handle with my new tool and attached it to the mug. The mug pictured on the left was made last week and kept safe in my damp box. Today made the handle with my new tool. The four balls of clay pictured on the left will be mugs today and I’ll make the handles tomorrow.
Playing around with different much shapes today! These three on the bats are in the damp box along with two more mugs all awaiting for handles which I will add tomorrow!
Thanks to the inter-web’s search engines, I was able to find a tool for that!