Preparation of the Clay
The clay is prepared by purifying, cleaning and removing dust particles and mixed constantly with water and packed in an air tight condition so that the moisture doesn’t enter the clay n dry it up.
Thin type of absorbent clay sourced from the beds of tanks is used for jewelry. The clay is dried in the sun, crushed, crumpled and finally put in tub of water. Clay is filtered through sieve. The clay thus sieved is filtered and allowed to settle. The excess water from the tubs is poured and the clay is dried and cut into shapes and sizes as desired.
Terracotta Fish Toy
Artisan pre-mixes the clay and places it to the center of the potter’s wheel. The clay is pressed and pulled on the wheel head of the potter’s wheel. Later a required form of closed pot which looks like a hollow round pebble is made with the clay seeing that the clay is used efficiently by keeping the body hallow. The closed pot is taken out by slicing it from the wheel head with the help of binding wire. The pot is then added with the detail features like tail, fins, mouth and eyes proportion to the body of the fish with clay after it is semi dried. Wooden clay modelling tool is used while making the details on the article. The gills of the fish is made out of the half pen cap impressions.
Terracotta Earring Jewelry
Artisan decides on the designs and patterns and starts pre-mixing the clay and modelling it to the required shape and design with hands. Once the required design is made a solder wire or thread is inserted into it to the center which enacts like a suspending “U” pin hook that is then joined to the jumper ring and then to the earring hook after the artifact is baked and fired. The earrings are given more enhancement by adding droplets to it by making small clay balls which is suspended below to the main earring with the help of “U” pin hook.
Once the design is made on clay it is kept for drying under sunlight for two days. As the clay dries the clay gets shrunk a bit. This process is called “Air Drying”
After the clay is dried the objects are placed in a terracotta pot and kept on the cow dung pottery kiln to bake where all the moisture of the clay is dried and hardens the clay. The kiln is made up of dried cow dung and dried grass which then covered by the terracotta roof tiles to ensure no outflow of the temperature. Whiling baking the clay goes through many reactions. The clay is baked up to the heat of 700 to 900 degree Celsius for four to five hours. After the baking is completed the clay becomes terracotta that looks like reddish brown in color which is then removed from kiln and the articles are left for cool down for four to five hours.
Bright and vibrant colors of acrylic paints are used in painting the terracotta with intricate designs to make the articles even more beautiful. Glittering paints are also used in enhancing the article.
Making it Ready to Wear
The articles are made wearable by attaching the finished article to the jumper ring which is then looped to the earring hook made by the solder wire with the help of cutting pliers.