Carve a Stone Bowl

Ever thought about trying to make something to last? It’s a hard problem: moths, rust, fire, thieves, and time versus the works of the mighty. Take a walk through an old cemetery. The Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Mass., is one of my favorites. Acid rain is dissolving some of... Read more »

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 »

The Florence Siphon

The vacuum siphon coffee brewing method dates back to the 1840s. It produces some of the cleanest, smoothest-tasting coffee of any method. Commercial vacuum pots are available, but I wanted to heighten the drama of vacuum brewing by taking it into the realm of the mad scientist’s lab. Thus the... 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 »