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Products Used

  • Low Fire White Clay Body
  • FN-002 Yellow, Fn-004 Red, FN-009 Black, FN-016 Harvest Orange, FN-20 Medium Green, FN-023 Cinnamon, FN-031 Corn Flower Blue, S2-KIT2 Crystalites Kit (S-2701 Peacock Eyes, S-2702 Northern Lights, S-2704 Plum Jelly, S-2708 Oriental Carmel, S-2709 Cappuccino Mint, S-2711 Tahiti Grape, S-2712 Monsoon Seas, S-2714 Herb Garden, S-2715 Spotted Kiwi, S-2724 Lotus Blossum, S-2727 Poppyfields, S-2729 Citrus Splash)

Decorating Accessories

  • CB-404 #4 Pointed Round, CB-604 #4 Soft Fan, CB-110 #10/0 Mini Liner

Miscellaneous Supplies

  • Needle Tool, Slip, 1/4' Wooden Slats, Canvas, Rolling Pin, Fettling Knife, Sand bag, Straight Edge


Crystal Hats
Title: Hats, hats, hats!
Techniques: Slab/Hand-building, Glaze Application
Featuring: Crystalites Kit (S2-KIT2)
Course Length: 1-2 weeks (allow for dry time and firing)
Level: Advanced 9-12
Artist: Adena Griffith
Lesson Plan by: Hannah Clark

Lesson Plan:

Art (Ceramics) + Art History (Popular Culture) + (Cultural Traditions)


Throughout history, head coverings have been used in a variety of ways. For spiritual reasons, occupations, weather necessities, or for protection--hats have defined various cultures. As far back as the ancient Egyptians, head coverings were used as a status symbol. From then on, those living in a certain time period or place, were able to identify those of a certain class or group.

In contemporary popular culture, hats define everything from belonging on a sports team, to a trendy fashion statement. In this lesson, students will explore the cultural reflection a hat may bring to a particular group of people, and also reflect on how a hat can define who they are in society.


  • Students will learn the history of hats by researching a particular time period in history that interests them.
  • Students will sketch various hat forms and styles, and choose one that defines their culture or a style they studied about.
  • Students will create unique ceramic hat forms that are inspired by their research.

National Standards (9-12)

  • VA:Cr1.2.Ia: Shape an artistic investigation of an aspect of present- day life using a contemporary practice of art or design.
  • VA:Cr1.2.IIIa: Choose from a range of materials and methods of traditional and contemporary artistic practices, following or breaking established conventions, to plan the making of multiple works of art and design based on a theme, idea, or concept.
  • VA:Cr2.1.IIa: Through experimentation, practice, and persistence, demonstrate acquisition of skills and knowledge in a chosen art form.



  1. For the right depth of clay, lay out canvas fabric on table and place ¼ inch slats on the left and right side of the canvas fabric. Place a piece of moist clay about 2# in size, in the middle of the fabric. Using a rolling pin, roll out the clay to the size desired. The slats are used as a guide to keep your clay level and at the same evenness. Make sure the edges of the rolling pin hit the ¼ inch slats.
  2. Take a marble size piece of clay and place it in the individual portion cup and add about 3 tablespoon of water. Mix this up with your fingers to make a slurry. This will be the “glue” to attach all the pieces together.
  3. Using a sand bag press the clay into the slump mold. Making sure the clay fits snugly. Trim around edges to mold. Remove clay from mold when firm enough to hold its shape. Make two of these. This base will be used for the Sherlock Holmes hat and the beanie hat.
  4. For the Sherlock Holmes hat, use the remainder of the slabs to cut out four half moon shapes and attach to the form using the clay slurry and scoring technique. Two will be used for the front and back bill. The other two will be attached to the sides of the hat. Cut a thin strip of clay to create two loops on the top for the ribbon. Apply with slurry.
  5. For the Beanie hat flip the base over and create a coil and add two petal shapes to the top to create the spinner.
  6. For the Princess and Wizard hats, create a cone shape out of clay and slip and score the fold together. Allow to dry standing upright to keep the cone shape.
  7. For the Jester hat, cut out a slab long enough to create a half of a cylinder with a top. While that is stiffing up create four small cones out of clay. These will be attached using the slip and score method using the clay slurry. Make sure there is a hole from the cylinder to the cones for air release. Once you attach the cones bend them down to create different levels of the hat. Use the end of the fettling knife on the inside of the top circle to bend the top of the hat down. Attach a small clay ball where you pushed down using the slurry. You may choose to add clay balls to the ends of the cones or add found materials to the ends. Cut out small triangles from a slab and slip and score them to the bottom of the cylinder. Use a pencil to draw on detail lines.
  8. Allow to completely dry and bisque fore them to cone 04.

**All of these hats can be created using the coil hand building method**


  1. Begin with properly fired shelf cone 04 bisque. Moisten a clean sponge and wipe bisque to remove any dust.
  2. Princess Hat: Apply three coats of CG-964 Kaleidoscope to the whole piece using a CB-604 Soft fan brush.
  3. Wizard Hat: Apply three coats of CG-785 Floral Fantasy to the whole piece using a CB-604 Soft fan brush.
  4. Beanie Hat: Section off the hat into four sections using the CB-110 Mini Liner and FN-009 Black. For each section, you will use one of the following glazes, CG-718 Blue Caprice, CG-753 Sassy Orange, CG-756 Firecracker, or CG-970 Masquerade. You will apply the three coats of glaze using the CB-604 Soft Fan brush. For the top of the beanie you will apply three coats of FN-009 Black to the rod, one of each FN-031 Corn Flower Blue and FN-004 Red to the petal shapes, and FN-002 Yellow to the ball on top using the CB-404 Pointed Round.
  5. Jester Hat: You will apply three coats of CG-753 Sassy Orange, CG-756 Firecracker, or CG-970 Masquerade to each section using the CB-604 Soft Fan Brush. The triangles on the bottom are three coats of CG-753 Sassy Orange applied with the CB-404 Pointed Round brush. For the ball on the top of the hat apply three coats of FN-020 Medium Green.
  6. Sherlock Holmes: Apply three coats of FN-016 Harvest Glod to the top of the hat using the CB-604 Soft fan brush. Apply three coats of FN-023 Cinnamon to the ribbon and the front and back bill using the CB-404 Pointed Round brush. Apply three coats of CG-965 Mocha Marble using the CB-604 Soft Fan brush to the bills and the inside of the hat.
  7. Stilt and fire to shelf cone 06/05.

* After firing you may choose to create a glitter star for the wizards hat or attaching ribbon to the princess hat**

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