Glaze Trailing Beautiful Surface Designs

Sarah Jaeger glaze trailing

As almost any potter will tell you, glazing is probably the most challenging part of making pottery. It takes a lot of practice and experimentation to get it right (and it is easy to ruin a successful pot by getting the glazing wrong—take it from one who knows!). Sarah Jaeger is one of those potters who gets glazing so right. Through her years of experience as a professional potter, Sarah has developed a palette of glazes that work for her and she enhances her glaze surfaces with glaze trailing beautiful designs on her pots. The results are stunning.

In today’s video, an excerpt from her DVD Throwing, Altering, and Glazing For Function and Beauty, Sarah takes us through the glaze trailing process on one of her gorgeous pots. Watch the video, and then try it out in your own studio! – Jennifer Poellot Harnetty, editor.

Get Stunning Results with Glaze Trailing

This clip was excerpted from Throwing, Altering, & Glazing for Function and Beauty, with Sarah Jaeger, which is on sale in the Ceramic Arts Network Shop!

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Sarah Jaeger glaze trailing

More about Glaze Trailing

Glaze trailing is a super fun glazing technique that is somewhat similar to its cousin slip trailing in that both use a slip trailer, ear syringe or other such device to draw designs on pottery. But glaze trailing is done with two contrasting glazes. Because it is glaze on glaze, the lines do not remain raised on the surface as they do with slip trailing. Instead, they move and melt into the surface. Experiment with your current glaze palette and see if you can come up with some good combinations. But as always, test on test tiles first, and not your favorite piece, as not every combination is a winner! Good luck!

Find loads more pottery glazing techniques here!

To learn more about Sarah Jaeger or to see more images of her work, please visit

Save 40%: Throw, alter, AND glaze in one video!

With a goal of making pots that will be incorporated into the daily lives of those who own them, Sarah Jaeger knows she has to consider every detail in the design of her forms. In her information-packed video, she shares all the details to help you make better pots! In addition to the object’s physical shape, she demonstrates how the glazing process can enhance a form.

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Watch a clip!
**First published in 2013
  • Shelly S.

    Does anyone know where to buy those giant whisks Sarah is using to mix her glazes?

  • Dean H.

    FINALLY thanks for the tips I can now see the videos again. Glad I didn’t miss this one, it was great. Might have to get this DVD.

  • Karen B.

    adding to previous comment – you could find ‘compatibility view’ under the ‘page’ arrow.

  • Karen B.

    Dean – you could try using a different browser; if you are using IE9, there is a workaround – just click on the FAQ link under the video box.
    Good Luck! 🙂

  • Dean H.

    Trying to watch clip but all I get is a blank black box. I reinstalled Adobe Flash but it still won’t work. Any suggestions? Thanks

  • Enid .

    Thanks, Sarah, for this beautiful glaze trailing demo. I am inspired by it and will certainly try the technique on my next piece. Do you use Darvan to keep the glaze in even consistency?

  • Sandy B.

    Love your work! I too am clamuring for recipes for these gorgeous glazes! Most commercial glazes are a little thick and if left open to evaporate, maybe they would be intersting to use. It would be great to hear about the consistancy of the glaze used over for decoration. Maybe it’s in the DVD?
    Thanks for the inspiration!

  • H.

    Sarah is using a glaze for trailing – not an underglaze. With an underglaze, the lines would not melt into one another like they do with this glaze. Yes, the recipes are on the DVD.

    Judith – Sarah’s green glaze has chrome oxide in it, I believe.

    Antea – you could probably just let some of the water evaporate out of your commercial glaze to make it the consistency for trailing.

  • Dear Darlene Swan

    Slip (noun) is a liquefied suspension of clay particles in water. It differs from its very close relative, slurry, in that it is generally thinner. Slip has more clay content than its other close relative, engobe. Slip is usually the consistency of heavy cream.

    Slip is often used in decoration. It may be left the natural color of the clay body from which it is made, or it may be colored with oxides. It is applied to wet or soft leather-hard greenware.

    Slip may also be used for casting clay in plaster molds. Casting slip almost always has added ingredients to keep it in a uniformly consistent suspension until dried.

  • Linda S.

    Very good video with helpful close-ups of details. The center where I so ceramics offers “underglaze” and
    “colored slip” for trailing or painting. Is the “overglaze” Sarah refers to the same as underglaze or are
    these two different items? LINDA

  • Darlene S.

    Thanks for the clip!!! Love the work. Are glaze recipes given in the video?

    Also, as above I have a question, re the video clip. Was it a slip, or, Im thinking it is an overglaze in the bottle, however , Sarah referred to it (the bottle contents) as an overglaze and also as a slip, which to me would not be the same thing. Just wondering.

    Thanks again.

  • Judith S.

    Hi Sarah,
    Your pot is of a great shape and I love the decoration.
    I have actually been looking for a green glaze. Can you recommend one. Has this one got tin in the recipe ? Thank you for sharing your video with us.
    Judith, Geneva Switzerland

  • mandy s.

    Interesting trail glazing technique giving a superb result, love it.

  • Adi T.

    great demonstration. good tips. beautiful results. love the work. adi

  • Antea R.

    This is great! How can you make jarred commercial glazes the consistency needed for trailing?? Thank you!

  • Simone A.

    what a great teacher Sarah is, so natural and great info. Beautiful work as well. Ive downloaded several of the dvd’s from the bookstore and think this one is the best. Thank you Sarah for sharing!

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