Making Bar Soap

Just where and when humans first observed the chemical reaction between oil and potash is unknown. One legend says it was at “Mount Sapo” in ancient Rome, where a creek flowed over a deposit of wood ash and animal fats created by sacrificial fires for the gods. There’s evidence that... Read more »

Chic Batik

The history and customs of many cultures have been expressed through textiles for centuries. In Southeast Asia, batiking has been the medium for fabric design for almost 2,000 years. While in Bali, I had the opportunity to learn about batiking fabrics, and though most of the designs there showcase mythical... Read more »

Hypertufa Planter

The ultimate Zen garden accessory is the stone urn. Filled only with water and a few fallen leaves, it defines tranquility. Unfortunately, these stone beauties cost hundreds of dollars. Luckily, a concrete mix called “hypertufa” was developed that has the look of stone, specifically the volcanic rock called tufa. In... Read more »

Mosaic Table

I am a klutz. I break dishes all the time. This is why I like mosaics. It’s a wonderful way to make amends to all my precious pieces of pottery. “Sorry, Teacup, you can be a picture frame now! Oops, too bad, Vase, your flower-holding days are over, but please,... Read more »