new experience #29: paint my own pottery

saturday when i finished work at 4p.m., i was totally in the mood to get artsy!

good thing i had a groupon to use to help me with that!

the art studios is just a few doors down from fearless heart yoga - have i ever mentioned how i love my diverse 'hood?!

i have to add in this picture because, yes, i am wearing mittens. it was FREEZING on saturday (although the sunshine was nice!)

when i purchased my groupon a few months ago, i knew that painting some pottery would be a very fun new experience. i love artsy-craftsy projects but rarely do anything other than knitting (except for the cake decorating course) because i don’t want to invest in supplies (i’d love to weave on a loom!) and don’t want to clean up messes (painting of any type).

included in my groupon (i think i paid $10 for it? i should have taken a picture of my printout!) was two hours of studio time and $5 towards an item to potterize (that sounds like a legit word to me!).  the art studios is open until 7 pm on saturdays – very convenient!

love the renovated-updated home vibe!

when i arrived shortly after 5 pm, the place was a zoo! and all ages: children to retired folks.

this is heather!

heather was awesome. she was friendly and helpful as soon as i arrived, and balanced a lot of demands for her attention.

we started off in the back room where i would choose my piece of pottery:

certainly no shortage of options!

this handy poster was on the wall. as a first-timer, i appreciated the detailed instructions!

and it IS easy!

before i arrived, i had already mostly decided that i wanted to paint some type of dishware in order to help build my eclectic dishes collection:

bowl? plate? mug? tall? small? how to decide?!

i also did not want to spend an arm and a leg. let’s face it – i was not expecting to produce a picasso-quality piece. but lucky me! today was also 25% off all items!

but, then i spied the display of xmas choices:

hmmm...very tempting

in the end, i decided to stick with my original plan:

i chose the "asian bowl" - $12; it may very well become my asian CEREAL bowl!

the next step was to choose the five shades of glaze i wished to use. i forgot to snap a direct pic, but you can kinda see the choices in the back room photo above ^^. they had a chart that looked like the paint palette you see at paint stores. so many pretty shades! so hard to choose!

the five glazes i finally decided on - you bet there is an orange one in there!

heather totally took care of me: she found me a spot at a work table, got me a vast selection of paint brushes, set out water/sponge/paper toweling…all i had to do was start painting!

i got to paint in the front room - love those orange walls! and look at that sunshine streaming right in

tangent: those two girls provided quite the background entertainment – they chitchatted non-stop, then the one had a lengthy phone conversation in french with someone…of course, i evesdropped! she was an anglophone speaking in french so it was très facile to comprendre what she was saying.

i sponge cleaned my bowl, as directed...

...and picked out a few stencils, too - again, so much selection!

i started simply by painting the interior the lemon-lime shade, and the exterior the light green hue:

with a pause to blow-dry, as instructed, between the two coats i applied

next came a rim of blue…

this detailing was easier than i anticipated, thanks to the variety of paint brush sizes! only a few smudges here and there...

i wanted a wee something inside my bowl...

...and had fun with the flower stencils!

…and, the finished product!

ta da!

i can see why my groupon offered two free hours of studio time. i diddled and daddled for over an hour, and as you can see, my masterpiece work of art is not very complex. i can totally see how time would fly if you were with a friend and/or painting something really detailed – like santa!

i really enjoyed myself! when i was done, all i had to do was pay and walk away. no cleaning up of glazes, paint brushes, stencils…what a good business plan to provide the fun and take care of the dirty work – literally!

my bowl will be ready on saturday. i’ll show you what it looks like after its been in the kiln. i’m interested to see how the colours will change!

i ended up paying $5.93 (tax!) more than what my groupon covered for this new experience. it was worth it!

final thoughts:

  • i can totally see how this would be an awesome birthday party outing for the 10-12 year old (girl) set
  • you could easily blow a ton of money very quickly by choosing several items and bigger items to paint, by choosing more glaze colours, and by spending a long time at the studio (and by purchasing a tuck shop treat!)
  • it’d be super fun to do this with a friend. except i doubt i could concentrate on painting + gossiping, so maybe it was a good thing i only had to focus on my task at hand!

and with that, all three of my groupon purchases to date are used up (old navy, fearless heart yoga, the art studios)!

what was a fave birthday party outing when you were growing up? either your own party or someone else’s? i loved rollerskating birthday parties! that was BIG in the early 80’s!

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  • Holly  On October 4, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    I would love to try that — and I can see myself spending HOURS picking out the piece to paint + picking out the paint colors. When I was in a wedding this Spring I spent 30+ minutes choosing a polish color for my nails. I just can’t seem to make up my mind about things like that.

    Potterize is totally a word 🙂

    Favorite bday parties: when I was in 8th grade my mom helped me throw a surprise party for my best friend. My mom hired a karaoke guy and we had so much fun! Another year we had a Mary Kay lady come and do our makeup.

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 4, 2011 at 4:10 pm

      oh, i LOVE those bday party memories!! i would have gone gaga for a mary kay party. and did you know, i have NEVER done karaoke and i am DYING to do karaoke!!! it just cracks me up!! wish i could make it happen for a new experience!! oh – nail colours, i so hear you. remember when i got my fake nails? there are just TOO MANY nail colours out there!! (and wall paints!)

  • Gina Unger  On October 4, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    Ooooh! I LOVE doing these kinds of crafts! Your bowl looks fantastic and i haven’t even seen the final product! I’ve had opportunity to do this same thing for free at our MOMs group for 2 years now (i painted a mug and a svg plate) and hope it happens again this year – it’s so much fun to get creative! And I did it in a whole group of women (25 of us!) and we were all still able to gab and concentrate – I was surprised! 🙂

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 4, 2011 at 3:36 pm

      thanks, gina! wow – you are an experienced potterizer (another new word?!), too!! i think this would be such a fun blogger meet-up activity or as an outing with a couple of friends – like you! 25 women – wow! that would be super fun!

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat  On October 4, 2011 at 8:26 am

    I’m so glad you finally went to the Art Studios Cathy!! I love that place and I also bought that Groupon! Your bowl looks great. When I was little, I would always want to have my birthday parties at places like this and I think I probably had about 4 pottery painting parties. It’s so much fun, a great way to relax, exercise some creative muscle, and socialize too. So glad you enjoyed it!

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 4, 2011 at 9:17 am

      i think in one of the first blog posts i ever read on your blog, you talked about going here! i did think of you when i was there! have fun using YOUR groupon, too! and that’s cool that you actually did the bday pottery painting parties!!

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