I hand-built Purple Rain Shakers from stoneware clay. These shakers are designed fit ergonomically in your hand.
First, I designed and cut out a template for the shakers. Next, I roll out a slab of clay between 1/8″ and 1/4″ thick, using a slab roller because it compresses the clay nicely into an even sheet. I cut the pattern out for the number of pairs I am making.
The body or wall is formed into an oval and closed at the ends. Now it’s time to make the tops. I roll texture into oval pieces that will make the tops to the shakers. And then I push the oval piece of clay up from the bottom through the oval body. This is what creates the “drop down” look of the shaker tops that people like. I use a needle tool to pierce the shaker holes in the top, making sure to create big enough openings for some of the larger grained salts.
Finally, I attach the floors and cut the hole for the rubber stopper. The hole is going to shrink when the piece is fired, so I need to estimate the shrinkage.
And a good bit of clean up and smoothing and then the shakers are ready for firing. I dip each shaker in a purple matte glaze that I make and then overlap with red gold and then green. The result is a sheeting, or rain, of color. The top is kept natural and I stain the clay with a red iron oxide, which is permanent. Rubber stoppers in the bottom fit snugly.
Purple Rain Shakers are beautiful on the table, but you can keep them on the stove as well. And they make great gifts for any occasion.
3.75”W x 2.75”H.
Pair with Taos Spoon Rest