Four Tips for Making a Box by Throwing Clay and Altering It

This clip was excerpted from Forming, Finishing and Firing: An Approach to the Wood Kiln, which is available in the Ceramic Arts Daily Shop!

Throwing Pots That Don’t Look Like They Started Out on the Pottery Wheel

Throwing clay on the pottery wheel and altering it into shapes that don’t look like they were wheel thrown is a lot of fun. Making a cube or box in this way also has its advantages because you have far fewer seams than you would if you were slab building and therefore far fewer chances for cracks to form.

Throwing and altering is the method Donovan Palmquist uses to make his tea caddies (storage boxes for tea). He alters a bottomless (well, almost bottomless) cylinder into a box, then adds slab bottoms and tops, and then a flange and a lid. In today’s video, I’ve compiled four tips from his new video Forming, Finishing and Firing: An Approach to the Wood Kiln, that will help you if you would like to try this project. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.

To learn more about Donovan Palmquist or to see more images of his work, please visit


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