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Decorate with Painted Pottery

If you are looking for a unique way to create some decorative items for your home and if you love ceramic art pieces, then you owe it to yourself to visit a ďpaint your own potteryĒ studio. Itís a fun experience and you end up with a one-of-a-kind piece of art.

The way it works is you pick out a piece of bisqueware, which is pottery before itís been painted. Choose from plates, bowls, platters, pitchers and even unique things like dog dishes or piggy banks. Then you pick out the paint colors you want to use.

Once you have made your selections, it's time to paint to your heartís delight. If you have never picked up a brush before, donít worry - you donít have to be an expert painter. One of the fun things about these places is you can make very loose and light-hearted designs and they still come out looking interesting. Itís a really great way to make some custom art for your home.

When you are done painting, your piece is left at the shop to be fired and then you pick it up usually within a week. Firing means the pottery will be dipped in a glaze and baked in a kiln to permanently harden your design. Once it cools, it will be ready to take home. Firing and cooling can take many hours, so most shops usually wait until they have several items to load into the kiln before firing. Thatís why it may take several days before you can collect your piece.

If youíre not sure what you would paint at a pottery studio, here are some ideas:Make the experience more fun by going with a group of friends. If youíre a newlywed, instead of registering at a department store, have a party at a paint your own pottery studio where everyone paints decorative ceramic pieces for your home that youíve picked out ahead of time. Or perhaps you could choose enough dishes for several place settings and invite your friends to create a personalized design for each one. Youíll have lovely memories of all your friends each time you use those dishes.

The cost at a paint your own pottery studio is the price of your piece plus a small fee for the use of paints and brushes. Some studios might charge for the time it takes you to paint if you go over a set amount of hours (like 3 or 4) while others will let you take as long as you like to finish your piece Ė even if that means returning another day. Be sure to find out if there are any extra charges before you begin.

Paint your own pottery studios often provide other artistic opportunities besides painting ceramics. These include making your own mosaics, jewelry or taking a turn on a potterís wheel to make your own clay items. If you arenít familiar with any of these techniques, you can sign up for classes or get individualized instruction in most studios. Itís a great way to showcase your artistic side in your home decor.

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