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ClayWorks Studio Manual & Policies

Revised December 2023 by Rosalie MacNeil

  1. Purchasing Clay

  2. Studio Maintenance/clean-up procedures  

  3. Glaze Protocols 

  4. Studio Equipment 

  5. Consideration for the Kiln Loaders 

  6. Ware Considerations 

  7. Pug Mill protocols 

  8. Service Hours 

  1. Purchasing Clay 


Unknown clay brought into the studio poses a risk to the firing process. The cost of clay includes firing and glazing. 


Clay Cupboard Protocols: 


Managing the Clay Cupboard during class: 

  • Teachers will sell clay during the first 10 minutes of each class. 

  • Clay cupboard is to be closed and locked for the balance of the class 

  • Studio Managers and teachers (keyholders) may sell clay outside of class times on an "as needed" basis. 


Purchasing Clay: 

  • Students/Studio Members must complete the clay purchase envelope, enclose money, submit to teacher/keyholder to review, and place in lockbox. OR pay online and show proof. 

  • Teachers should ensure that students complete the clay envelope/voucher card in 

full (name; date; clay; $; etc) and initial envelope or voucher card. 

  • IF you pay online, and text a keyholder a copy of your purchase proof you can have clay left out for you with your name on it. They will place a voucher card with it. Don't forget to sign the card and place in lockbox when clay is picked up. 

Current Studio Manager Rosalie (519)-755-1517 

  • Teachers requiring demo clay (max 2 bags per semester) are to complete the clay purchase paper form and place in box. It looks just like the envelopes, but it is not an envelope, it is a slip of paper. (don't waste an envelope please) 

2. Studio Maintenance/clean-up procedures  

  • All wheels including foot pedal must be completely wiped to free from clay residue. The next person to use the wheel should not be able to tell what colour your clay was. 

  • If trimming has caused excessive floor litter around wheel, please use the hand­ held broom to gently sweep and then mop as needed. NO BROOMS IN STUDIO! 

  • Unplug and switch off wheel, place stool and bench on top of nearby shelving (this makes it easy for the Clean Team to mop). 

  • Clean and rinse tools and basins using your bowl water first. PLEASE DO NOT RUN WATER TO CLEAN! Pour slops into the slop bucket. 

  • Students are encouraged to recycle their own clay. Clay recycled in the large bins is recycled by Clayworks members and is used for the kid's class. It is sometimes available for members. The new pug mill is now operational so clay may soon be available for sale at a discount. 

  • All leather hard clay and harder should go on top of the pugmill table in bags or the container for dry clay. DO NOT PUT IN THE SLOPS bucket as it will not break down in slops. 

  • Wipe sink and rinse bowls and sponges. ​

3. Glaze protocols: 

  • Please do not double dip on outside of pots all the way to bottom. Glaze will run and ruin shelves. 

  • Do not contaminate the clear glazes by double dipping. 

  • Rinse all glaze covered articles (tools, mistake pots, pourers, hands) in 3-bucket system by the drill mixer. Full bucket gets poured into empty bucket when clear, bottom slops get poured into Slops bucket for reclaiming.  

  • Make sure your pots have a wax line of at least 4mm, and bottoms wiped clean. 

  • Wax needs to be totally dry before dipping into glaze. 

  • If a pot breaks in the glaze bucket, the bucket must be sieved before next use. Find the sieve on top of the black cabinet. 

  • Wipe glaze table clean after using. TWICE! 

  • Pots which are not signed, or pots with glaze on the bottom or excessive glaze, will not be fired.  

  • Use notes to indicate an unusual glaze situation (props, loose lids, once-fires) 

4. Studio Equipment 

Wedging Tables 

  • Ensure the wedging tables are sponged clean to avoid dust formation. 

  • Use plaster surfaces to reclaim excessively wet clay. 

  • Do not cut clay on plaster or canvas surfaces. 


Slab Roller, spray booth and other equipment 

  • Do not use any equipment until you have been taught or briefed about it. 

  • Replace all small equipment (heat gun, blender, tools) back where you found it. 

5. Consideration for the Kiln Loaders 

A reasonable number of pots per student will be fired. If a student makes several pots outside of class, or if an excessive number of cookie-cutter or slab reproductions are made, the firing committee reserves the right to refuse to fire them. 

6. Ware Considerations 


  • Always sign your pots, students must use class symbol beside their name 

  • Take finished work home promptly to avoid loss and studio clutter. ​

7. Pug Mill Protocols 

Do not touch the Pug Mill unless you have been trained on it and have read the manual. See the Studio Manager or current Pug Team Lead for more information.  

HOWEVER, you can help by getting the clay ready for pugging: 

  1. take bowls of slop to the plaster tables to dry out somewhat, store it in a bag and leave on the table. 

  2. break down hard blocks of clay by hammering. Keep clay in a bag and hammer to small chunks. 

  3. slice leatherhard clay into smaller chunks (2-3 inches) 

  4. clean and store clay bags for reuse. 

8. Service Hours for Members of ClayWorks 

All members of the studio must contribute to the running of the studio by providing 36 minimum service hours per year. Members generally start on the Clean Team and may gradually become part of the Kiln Team, Pub Team, Glaze Team, Media Team, or provide any of a variety of other needed services. Service hours are logged online at, or by using the Q-R code posted at the studio.  

Happy Potting!

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