Use a spoon to burnish the bottoms of pieces when they are leather hard. The surface will be nice and smooth. You can also burnish foot rings after trimming in the same way, for a nice smooth finish. You can do the burnishing by hand, or while the piece is still on the wheel after trimming.
Coil Pots: Coils are made by rolling clay on a table. Start out by squeezing the clay in your hands to form a rough fat coil. Then roll this coil back and for the on the table, giving it its momentum with the full length of the inside of the hands. To keep the coil from flattening out it is important that you do not press down too hard and that the coil makes at least one complete rotation as it is pushed in one direction.
T make a long coil use more clay and when rolling, start with your hands in the center and move them apart to either end of the coil.
Rolling dries out the clay so start with moist clay.
The technique of burnishing pottery can be traced back to ancient times.
Burnishing involves no more than rubbing the clay
surface with a smooth tool to produce a mirror-smooth surface.
In reality it has a compressing effect on the clay particles.
It can be done when the clay surface is leather hard and up until it is almost completely dry.
Most clays are suitable for burnishing although the finer the clay the smoother the burnished surface.
Suitable tools for burnishing include: Smooth rounded
beach pebbles, The convex side of metal spoons and smooth
After the pot is smooth, draw your design with lead pencil then scratch around design with a knife. Designs can either be geometric or organic
Once the pot has been blackfired it can be left without further treatment or polished with oils to enhance the shine.