I’m a firm believer that arts and craft activities are not gender specific and know that my son loves them as much as any of the girls we know. He’s always so proud of his school projects and loves spending time making things at home. We were recently offered the opportunity to try out the Pottery Cool Studio from Spin Master and I thought it would be great for my nearly 8 year old to try out.
The Pottery Cool Studio comes with a Pottery Cool Clay Studio, Spray Bottle, Tool Holder, 4 packs of Clay rounds, Paint Brush, 2 Sculpting Tools, 2 Coring Tools, 2 Forms and Sleeves, 10 different coloured paint pots and an Instruction leaflet.
Aimed at children aged 6 years and over, you will need 4 x C (LR14) batteries to operate The Pottery Cool Studio, but once the batteries are placed in the back of the clay studio, and you’ve filled the spray bottle with water you are ready to start.
The set comes with a two-part cone and pot forms which slot together and then can be placed into the potter’s wheel.
You then place the relevant shaped sleeve over the top of the form.
The instruction leaflet gives you some ideas for projects involving the forms and in the end my son decided he’d make a pot to put treasure in (don’t ask).
For projects involving either of the two forms supplied with the Pottery Cool Studio you will need to use a complete round of clay. My one criticism of this set is that the bags they clay are supplied in aren’t resealable. This type of clay is air drying, but if you have some left over, you can put it in a resealable bag, spray it, seal and in a couple of hours the clay will be useable again.
Fold the clay round over the form and press gentle around it to make your shape.
Then you turn the potter’s wheel on (there are two speeds but we’ve only used the slower speed) and spray your creation with water (10-12 sprays) and apply pressure with your hands to mould and smooth out your project.
Once you’re happy with the general shape and smoothness of your piece you are ready to trim the edge to make a clean rim. We’d watched videos where children were using one of the trimming tools with the potter’s wheel spinning, but we stuck with the instruction booklet which suggested turning the wheel off. I’d certainly suggest this option for first time potters to avoid tears or frustration. Put any clay remnants into a resealable bag and spray with water for future use.
The wheel is easy to pop out of the base and then press the wheel down on your table to release the form holding the clay creation. Remove the main form from the inside of the pottery to avoid cracking, and leave your piece to dry for 15-20 minutes.
At this point my son decided to add some decoration to his pot as the clay is still quite soft and easy to add details to. The tool holder has a number of prints around its surface to use, and the tools also feature different symbols to use too. He used the coring tools to make holes around the rim of his pot too.
Once he’d finished his design it was time to remove the inner sleeve, which pulls away easily from the pottery.
After leaving his pot overnight top full dry it was time to paint his creation. The pots provided offer a good selection of colours to please boy boys and girls and he was soon painting away. The paint dries really quickly too which is always a bonus and his finished masterpiece was ready in no time at all.
He’s so pleased with his creation and has really taken to the idea of the Pottery Cool Studio. As well as using the forms provided, you can put the clay directly onto the wheel to create other items and the Cool Maker Youtube channel provides lots of inspiration and tips to help budding potters hone their craft.
Apparently my son will be making a pottery cat in the coming weeks and I have an inkling that once Berry the Elf reappears on 1st December, he may well get involved in some pottery antics too. This is a great set for children who would like to try their hands at pottery. It’s simple to use and very quick for children to make their creations. You can also buy the clay rounds separately to keep your potter in materials. I’ve included my Amazon Affiliate links below for both the Pottery Cool Studio and the Clay refills.
disclosure: we were sent the item mentioned in exchange for an honest review