Happy St. Patrick’s day! In honor of my family heritage (you did see the McRaney up there, didn’t you?), here is the free kiln carving pattern for March. This pattern is slightly more difficult to cut than the pattern for January, but still quite straightforward.
1. Cut a piece of fiber paper big enough for the pattern.
I used 1/32″ fiber paper for this particular project. Tack the pattern over the fiber paper through the black tack dots.
Every now and then I get a wild hair and decide to do something big and bold. What better way to test my boundaries than with a gigantic kiln carving? This piece was created for the Nature of Sustainable Art show at Red Butte Garden that is up through the end of February.
Here it is at long last, the first of the tutorials. Thanks for waiting. Really. Thank you.
This star is approximately 6″ square, and can be used for a bunch of different things, you could bend it into a plate, drill holes for a hanging wire and put it in a window, cast it in a circle and put it on the Christmas Tree. If you want to slump it after kiln carving, use the suggested slumping schedule.
Wondering why my star is all yellow and funky? I used low-E glass for this one.
Kiln carving is another really versatile way to add texture and design to recycled glass artwork. Kiln carving refers to “carving” in the glass that takes place in the kiln during a firing cycle. Kiln carving utilizes fiber paper to make the actual design.
Fiber paper is a refractory material, looks much like paper toweling of felt, and is made from ceramic fiber with an organic sugar binder. This means it will smell funny when the binder burns off, I suggest venting the kiln to the outside if possible.
Fiber paper can be cut into shapes with scissors or with an X-acto knife, then placed under the glass and fused. I like to put the fiber paper in the mold, fire the glass using a full fuse schedule, but with a top temperature of 1485 (top fire) or 1500 (side fire). This gives you enough heat to full fuse, without slumping too far, and gives a nice finish on the edge.