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Either soft or hard rubber ribs are nice to handle for shaping
or smoothing surfaces. At some point treat yourself to an
elephant ear sponge which also feels great to work with. A
chamois strip is nice for smoothing over edges on rims (the
inexpensive way is to use a piece of paper towel). There is
no reason to spend a lot of money on tools (some of the
best are found or made) but we encourage you to try some
because many exist to make your pottery life more
productive. I found a great application for an old
manicure set, there is one tool with a slightly curved end
which is perfect for taking off a bit of extra glaze around the
foot of a bowl.