Welcome to our B.O.C. blog. Learn about the world of handcrafted ceramic beads, buttons, pendants & components from our talented and knowledgeable Artisans.

Tuesday Tip - Dusting

Pendant and Photo by Mary Jane at Maire Dodd

Not your ordinary household dusting. I have no tips about that. I do know I wake up most mornings hoping the fairies have been in. Ever the optimist.

OK, so what is this about? Well often you will read instructions when you are working with rubber molds or texture mats to give them a light dusting of corn starch to keep your clay from sticking.  But just how do you do that? If you use a shaker you are almost guaranteed to get an uneven or too heavy an application of corn starch. This is what I use.

Ta Da! Cheap and cheerful, this is my home made corn starch duster. It's just a square of old t-shirt fabric (originally destined to be a dust rag) with a pile of corn starch in the middle and secured with a rubber band that was cast off from a bunch of green onions.  I just pat it into a mold or onto a texture plate and Bob's your uncle, I've got a nice even thin coat of starch. Easy peasy!

A little post script. Sometimes you will see talcum powder recommended as a release. I've used this. Smells nice. But it can leave a scum on your bisque piece because it contains minerals. Corn starch is organic and burns out completely in your bisque firing.


  1. Sweet Stuff! Love the duster... So easy to make and great point about it burning off and not leaving a residue on the bisque!

    Corn starch works miracles - even gets sand off of sticky body parts when at the beach (used baby powder with corn starch often for our little ones in the summer time).

    I have even tried having the vents sucked clean to keep the house dust down a bit so I could go longer without dust bunny and cat hairballs (the kind that float all over the hardwood floors) about the house in droves. But I think it just made it worse. I'll let you know if those dust clean up fairies ever show up... So far it's just the ones that make the dust!

  2. thanks for this great tip..i use CS as a release but it does clump in areas..trying this tip today.

    Dusting? i'm trying out Hepa air filter machines in several rooms..you would not believe what gets collected in their filters,which of course would've ended up on everything else.

  3. Isn't it funny when you are working with clay and you wonder how can you make a process easier? This is one of those cases, and it's brilliant! Sometimes I just can't figure it out.... I dab my molds with CS with a dry brush, it works okay, but I think this will be better, thanks!

    The other kind of dusting will have to wait, I got clay to do! Thanks for saring.

  4. Bob's your Uncle? Is that a saying, like Voila? Love the tip.

  5. I've always used a vegetable spray for my mold release... ...will have to try the corn starch duster...Thanks!

  6. Don't know why my "spray" comment went anonymous...That was me.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.