One of my favorite things to make and one of my best-sellers in the humble Yarn Bowl. These beautiful bowls are the perfect gift for anyone who works with yarn.  They always seem to sell very well at fairs and shows because they are unique and pretty.

Please note this post may contain affiliate links and I may earn a commission if you click them and make a purchase.  This is, of course, at no cost to you, and I only share products that I use and love myself.

I am sure there are millions of different ways to make these functional Yarn Bowls but today I am going to share with you MY way. Where you go from here is up to you!!

 So let’s go make a Yarn Bowl

Weighing the Clay

Are you not sure what a Yarn Bowl is and what its used for? Check out my Yarn Bowl Post. Looking to buy a yarn bowl? I list them on Etsy here.

I use mid-fire clay with some body to it but you want to be sure that your clay doesn’t contain too much grit. The swoop the yarn feeds through should be smooth so that the yarn doesn’t catch. Gritty clay will make it hard to have a lovely smooth surface.

 

Measure out your clay. For the Yarn Bowls I make I use 2 lb.4 oz. of clay. The walls of my pieces are generally about 1/4″ and I like to make my Yarn Bowls fairly robust so that they don’t tip or move easily when the end user tugs on the yarn.

For the same reason we will be throwing a bowl with a wide, thick bottom. Remember that when these yarn bowls are used the yarn worker will be pulling on the yarn so having a wide, bottom heavy bowl will keep it more stable and less likely to tip over.

Center the Ball on the wheel and flatten it into a tuna can shape that is about 4.5″ wide. Open it about 3.5″ leaving 1/2 inch base for making a foot ring

Pull up the walls into a into a shape that you like. This will be your personal preference but here is a photo of the shape I prefer.  The final shape I am going for measures out to 6 1/4″ wide at the rim and 4″ tall.  One of my favorite tools (and the one that is usually lost or misplaced) is a chop stick that I marked out in 1″ increments. This simple tool is super handy.

The inside bottom of my bowls ends up being abut 4″.   I add the swirl at the very end

Let the Yarn Bowl Stiffen up and become leather hard.

 Cutting the swoop

I prefer to cut the swoop when the bowl has stiffened up to a firm leather hard. You want it to be stiff enough to not wiggle or distort when you are cutting it out. At the same time it still has to be soft enough for a craft knife to cleanly cut.

I have found that it is NOT necessary to have a sharp blade on the craft knife. In fact, I prefer my blade to be dull. It cuts through the clay really well and I don’t worry as much about it slipping and cutting me. I use an X-Acto knife but any craft type knife will do.

I always start with the Yarn Bowl hole.

For my Yarn Bowls, I place the hole in the middle of the bowl. To make the hole I use either a 23/64 Drill Bit or a Clay Hole Maker, whichever I can find in my studio the fastest.

The drill bit I like the most is a weird size. I don’t even know where I found it but it’s 23/64. This size is smaller than the larger of the clay hole maker.

Once I make the hole I use my craft knife to gently draw the lines in the clay where I want my swoop to be.  I am very gentle and barely scratch the surface when I am doing this so that I can “erase” the line if I don’t like it.

When I am pleased with my swoop I cut the swoop out.  If my clay is the perfect hard Leather dry, I will be able to cut all the way through the clay. If the clay is too soft and the walls move I do suggest waiting some more until the walls of the bowl are no longer soft and pliable but you can still score and cut it. Cutting the clay when its too soft may cause the bowl to deform in the kiln if the swoop  moves when you are cutting it.

You can clean up your cut a bit if its not to your liking by gently shaving the swoop with your craft knife. Normally I don’t remove all the bits and pieces, nor do I smooth the edges, until the next day when the bowl is dried even more. I do my best to not handle the swoop too much to avoid kiln distortion.

Check out my video of the entire Process

I hope this article helps you in making Yarn Bowls!! Please feel free to ask questions, leave comments and share this post with anyone who you think would be interested

Nikon D3500


A few years back I decided to up my online game by taking better photos. At the time Nikon offered the D3400. I never regretted that purchase. Its a lower end Nikon but has some great features. One of my favorite features is that the camera connects via Bluetooth to my phone which I have set up to automatically upload to Google Photos so they are easy to download to my PC or adjust on my phone and upload to Etsy.

Analog scale

This is the type of scale I use when weighing out clay. Its perfect for clay weighing, doesnt need batteries and cleans up easily

Phone Arm for Overhead Videos

I bought this so that I could record video while I am making stuff. It works great.  The arm attaches to the table with a thumb screw. The part that holds your phone is spring loaded and almost too strong of a spring. I pinch my fingers a lot but I know the phone won’t fall out into my clay water!!

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

© 2018 All Rights Reserved. Dani Montoya ~ Unauthorized use and duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Dani Montoya and Yellow Cottage Studios with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Yellow Cottage Studios is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Address

1211 N. Broadway
Poteau OK 74953

Call Me

918-413-2820

PRIVACY POLICY and TOS

Email Me

dani@yellowcottagestudios.com

© 2018 All Rights Reserved. Dani Montoya ~ Unauthorized use and duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Dani Montoya and Yellow Cottage Studios with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Yellow Cottage Studios is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, as well as other Affiliate Advertising programs. This is a way for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. 

Can we stay in touch?

I would love the opportunity to send you something in your email telling about new products, fun studio things, and upcoming shows.  Please allow me to come visit with you once or twice a month.

Wonderful. You are subscribed!! I will be in touch. Thank you

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This