IADCCT Convention

logo conventioin 2020

MVCT [Mahoning Valley Ceramic Teachers] is preparing for the Annual IADCCT Convention in Las Vegas in February. Carol is President of the group, Jim is a member as well, and so are several of our studio’s students. Laura Gilbert VP went last year; this year Carol & Jim, Laura, and Sheryl will be attending.


There are six Make-n-Takes to choose from (each of us gets to do three) on Friday.

sneak peak


Then two sessions Saturday and two more on Sunday.

2020 convention pieces


David Hoff is doing an all-day workshop after the convention. [Many of the workshops we have done in the studio, including the Snowman and Friend we did this month, are David Hoff workshops.

Snowman with Friend


Members are invited to share a piece of their own work in what is called “Shareware”. A finished piece is displayed at Convention and the tech sheet is downloadable from the IADCCT website. MVCT has decided to paint a series of plates showing Dinnerware through the Ages, a replication of pieces on display at the Museum of Ceramics in East Liverpool. Each of the chapter members is painting a plate and Carol is arranging a display which will also include photos taken at the Museum.

Goodie Bags

Each chapter donates a small gift to the “goodie bags” that are handed out to participants at the convention. MVCT is making Award Pin Ribbons. This is an idea borrowed from our scout troop where they were made for Mothers’ Pins.  Ours will be on a red & white ribbons with pinback and porcelain medallion with the IADCCT logo.

mother's ribbon

Auction Items

Not sure exactly what our chapter is donating, but we are thinking about sharing our Painter’s Package that we did for Retreat in August. It includes a notebook, apron, tote bag, coffee mug, brush caddy, paint palette, and water bowl. The project was inspired by Duncan Ambassador Marge Quick from Alaska.

Carol’s Carouse; Creations
Where having Fun is why we come!

Why do we go? 
to learn new ceramic techniques

When do we go? 
Weds, February 5 to Tues, February 11th

What’s in it for me? 
MVCT Mini-Retreat on March 8th to share




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New Year = New Ideas

2020 A Vision for the Future


What do YOU want to do
in our Wonderful World of Ceramics?

Designing Technique Workshops or Party Van workshops, or even deciding what to pour for our Open Classes all depends on YOU.

And when we create a workshop, pour the bisque, and paint the samples and then no one shows up

we wonder why???

  • No interest in the project?
  • Too expensive?
  • Busy with other activities?
  • Would really like to see that offered again?

What is your focus?

  • Do you want to learn new things or just paint things that are on the shelf?
  • Are you making pieces for gifts or for yourself?
  • Explore the world of underglazes with Concepts, EZ strokes, and Cover Coats.
  • Add glitters and rub on paste colors to enliven your stained projects.
  • Learn to use overglazes such as gold, white gold, Mother of Pearl, and decals
  • Create with clay? Or learn to cut out wet pieces that are poured?

Think about it and let us know.

  • Check our our Etsy stores: AfricanAmericanKids and CarolsCarouselShop
  • Check out our Facebook pages: Carol’s Carousel Creations (for everyone), Carol’s Carousel Studio Group (for students in class), African-American Kids (news about the Etsy store), Carol’s Carousel Shoppe (news about that Etsy store), MVCT (Mahoning Valley Ceramic Teachers) page (not group).

Learn to navigate the website [You are on the website!]:

  • Check out the catalogs: Catalog, Carousels, and African-American Kids from the menu bar. You can pull down for additional menus or just click for a catalog listing
  • Scroll down and down and down this page to read all our blog posts. Many techniques are described in detail with pictures and instructions.
  • Use the search button on the right of the screen to find both posts and pages that relate to your topic, with short descriptions and links.
  • Subscribe by entering your email address where it says to “follow” and you wll get an email whenever a new post is added (but not new pages)
  • More menu bar items include color charts and silkscreens, information on parties and showers.

FREE LESSON for any referrals — just pick up some business cards, write your name on the back, and the new student gets a free lesson + you get a free lesson. Hand them out to scout groups, church groups, and nursing homes. Tell them about our Party Van.

And don’t forget to tell your friends that we are handicap accessible. 
(That’s why we put Jim’s picture on our business card. LOL)PICTURE OF BUSINESS CARD



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Plans for the New Year

January Technique Workshop

WOW! Here it is, 2020 already. Not only a new year but also a new decade.  We had the first of our monthly technique workshops today with Let It Snow. We painted David Hoff’s Snowman with Friend. Used clay carbon to transfer the pattern, floated in a light blue wash around the design, blocked in colors and detailed with two darker shades, and outlined to finish the picture. Then we stenciled snowflakes around the rim, splattered over the snowflakes, and added a band on the outside of the rim to frame the picture. There’s lots to learn. Most of us had not used stencils before, some had not spattered nor floated. Here’s the group who came today.

MVCT January meeting

We are having a business meeting next Sunday, January 12th at 1:00. It will be followed at 2:00 by a Duncan University workshop by Larry Knight that is open to the public. Cost is $25. We will be painting “Classical Christmas on a triangle plate.

Duncan U Dec 2019 Classical Christmas Winter Church Scene

February Technique Workshop

The next workshop is scheduled for Sunday, February 2nd at 2:00. It is simply called “Valentine’s Day Workshop”. We will be using our new Valentine Silkscreen with the Old Truck and several sayings to choose from.  Painters will make both a plate and a matching coffee mug. Kids can do this technique but toddlers would need a lot of help. Cost is $20.

valentine's day silkscreen old truck

Future Workshops

Here are some ideas we are thinking through. Your interest and other ideas are appreciated.

  • MUD on Easter eggs, either on a half-dozen actual size eggs, or on a larger egg, or on an egg box. Can offer a choice at the workshop. Note that some of them have jewels added to the design.
  • Appli-Kate Technique

Appli-Kate vase with patters

  • Glaze Raking
  • Slip Trailing (using cake-decorating bags and tips)

Slip Trailing

Carol’s Carousel Creations
Where having Fun is why we come!

So please help us out with ideas for our 2020 workshops.

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A Vision for 2020

Happy New Year
A Vision for 2020

We have already shared the list of things to do in the studio.
Here are some of our goals for the New Year, 2020

clipart 2020 vision

clipart under constructionConstruction

complete remodeling in the “kitchen”
complete rearranging the “studio”
create packing & shipping station
finish the bathroom


  • Party Van workshops — goal is 2 to 4 every month
  • Technique Workshops — goal is one every month
  • Carousel CollectionDoc Holliday 1197 The Original Large Carousel Horse
    • make samples of small & large horses
    • update the Etsy shop & Facebook page
      to include other fantasy items.
  • AfricanAmericanKids Etsy shop & Facebook page
  • Gardening — arrange ceramic items in the gardens to promote using ceramics outdoors


  • maintain dealership status at OCS
  • establish Fashenhues dealership
  • make a profit — we have yet to be out of the red 

Carol’s Carousel Creations
Where having Fun is why we come!

How you can help us reach our goals:
bring your friends to class
share our business cards 
refer us to nursing homes
Thank You for your Support

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Construction Zone

clipart under constructionAs many of you know, our studio has been a disaster for a very long time. We have been trying to get the studio organized while still continuing our regular schedule of classes, technique workshops, Party Van workshops, and Etsy orders. We have been especially busy with the holiday  season and extra gift orders.

This year we did not schedule any events for Christmas Break. Probably should have for those teachers, bus drivers, and children who are on vacation and looking for something to do. Perhaps we will plan some activities for the 2020 Break.

So, you ask, what have we been up to?

  • drywall clipartThe kitchen sink and cabinets are now completely down and the new wallboard is up.
  • Jim is working today on the mudding of joints and divots
  • We may get to painting today if dry enough, else tomorrow (green like the office side of the wall)
  • White shelf units are assembled and ready to move into place when the kitchenwall is finished.
  • Two of the five-foot tables have been removed from the front wall of the studio and replaced with black shelf units for bisque and samples. Some bisque has been moved to this side of the room.
  • Mixed-color shelving that was on the inner wall was replaced with black shelving — so far one unit holds Fashenhues supplies, bisque, and samples; the other holds Azure alcohol supplies, bisque, and samples.

What is there still to do?

  • clipart-tired-woman-1.pngPurchase additional black shelving units for both side of the studio.
  • Remove last five-foot table to accommodate more shelving
  • Shelve bisque and samples on new shelving.
  • Make labels for the shelving.
  • Hang sample plates and other flat items on the walls above the shelving.
  • Reorganize supply boxes (to accommodate what was in the kitchen cupboards) and locate where more accessible to students.
  • Put the “kitchen” room back in order.
    • even though no longer a kitchen, this room will hold bisque and samples that are used in a kitchen and need to be glazed — that is, plates, cups, steins, decanters, teapots, cookie jars, canister sets, etc.
    • organize student shelves
    • organize and label the glaze shelves
    • find location for two glaze craft carts and four bisque craft carts
  • dust and vacuum studio
  • dust and mop kitchen

Still on the to-do list

  • clipart to do liststore seasonal bisque and samples in closet bins
  • reorganize closet
  • clean desk — move stencil, silkscreen, and decal books to shelf more accessible to students
  • install two ceiling fans with schoolhouse lights
  • install additional track lighting past the fan/light
  • install bathroom wall; hang towel rings, mirror, and bisque
  • make and hang curtains in bathroom
  • build spray booth with fan exhaust hood


  • We want to have as much as possible finished by Saturday, January 4th.
  • Snowman with FriendWe reopen on Sunday, January 5th with our Let It Snow! workshop. This is a Free workshop we are doing for our students as a Thank You. We will be painting David Hoff’s Snowman with Friend on a dinner plate.
  • Open classes resume on Monday, January 6th at 6:00.
  • First Party Van workshop is on Tuesday, January 7th at the Inn at Ironwood

carousel party van logo

Whew! That’s quite a list. We will get as much done as we can.

Carol’s Carousel Creations
Where having Fun is why we come!

All the changes we are making are for the benefit of our students.
Making things more comfortable, more accessible, and more available!

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Christmas Day 2019

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!

CarolYesterday we held our traditional Christmas Eve Day Brunch where we celebrated with the family. Unfortunately, several of the younger generation did not get the day off so we were missing Amber & Dylan, A.J., Brittany, and Andy. Brent came later after he got off work, but didn’t get in any of the pictures. [Jim called me “Mrs. Claus” this morning because of my white hair and red shirt. LOL]

We opted for ham and scrambled eggs and tater tots this year instead of the traditional strata (which we may go back to as some were looking forward to it). The table was laden with fruit and veggie trays, cookie trays, Christmas breads, cobblers, and pies (we never even cut the pies).

20191225_144411Jeremy did a great job shopping at Dollar Tree and picking out gifts for everyone. He even signed the gift tags while Mom wrapped the items to put in the gift bags. Joe and Vanessa got everyone socks! Bombas socks, that is. It’s like saying we got gourmet socks and I am wearing mine right now. Picture is Jim with his Bombas socks.

Decorations were limited to part of our ceramic Christmas tree collection. However, I only took pictures of the people opening gifts, not the trees nor the brunch table.

Christmas Pictures

Joe & Vanessa & daughter Jessica; “Jessy” with her cat plate.

Joe opening after shave from Jeremy; Vanessa with her garden Ziggy;
and Deana with a firehouse for her Christmas village.

Deana opening perfume from Jeremy; Jesse & Tom with the dragon teapot.
Courtney and Killian in the foreground. We gave her the giraffe sunset plate.

Jimmy with a hand clapper toy from Jeremy; John with sparkling cider & a glass;
Jessica giving Jimmy a gift (and general chaos of the room);

Alice opening hand soap from Jeremy (she is like a sister to me).
Jim in the middle with a winter scarf from Jeremy;
his best friend John (nearly a brother, born a day apart).

Jim opening an organizer box from Jeremy; Jeremy with his Star Trek shirt
and with his Cleveland Indians shirt, gifts from his brothers.

Killian is our great-grandson, Jimmy’s & Deana’s grandson, Courtney & Brent’s son. He is 18 months old now and a ball of energy.
And he loves his new “K is for Killian” cup with the Hershey kisses inside.
Killian playing with his trucks; one was left at great -grandma’s house!

Despite missing a few of the family, we had a nice day, and sent them all off to the next phase of their family Christmas rounds. All had family parties Christmas Eve and more family to visit Christmas Day. It leaves Christmas Day anticlimatic for us but that’s ok.

Today is a day of rest and recuperation from all the preparations. I find that at my age I need a day off after every “eventful” day, just to recharge. So it’s work and play on the computer day, and maybe read another book on my tablet. Everything else can just wait until tomorrow, then it’s back to work!

Love and Good Wishes from Carol & Jim Warneke



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Technique of the Week: get some Rest

Oh My Gosh, it’s Christmas and I’m not ready!

  • It’s already Monday and I haven’t done Sunday’s blog,unfinished-business-clipart.png
  • Didn’t clean the house and everyone’s coming tomorrow for brunch!
  • Didn’t bake the banana bread (but Walmart had some I can buy).
  • Didn’t get the tree up — but why bother now for just one day?
  • Didn’t get any decorations out this year.
  • Didn’t help Jeremy make any Christmas gifts

But let’s look on the bright side:

  • We got all the AfricanAmericanKids Etsy orders done and shipped.woohoo accomplished clipart
  • We did get students’ items fired, some yet to be picked up as everyone is busy.
  • We bought the food for tomorrow and the ham’s in the oven now.
  • We took Jeremy shopping and helped wrap all his gifts.
  • We made couple’s gifts — all are fired, painted, wrapped, and under the tree.
  • We decorated the house with the ceramic trees that were on display in the studio.
  • We hosted the Pinochle Club Christmas Party.
  • We hosted the Annual Cookie Exchange Christmas Tea (Jim made pizzelles)
  • We hosted two Party Van workshops where seniors painted mini trees.
  • We hosted the November MVCT meeting and all-day banding workshop.
  • We poured plates for the December MVCT meeting here next Sunday

So, why am I tired?

  • Maybe because I am almost seventy-five years old!clipart tired woman
  • Maybe because Jim has lots of health issues this year, leaving more tasks to me.
  • Maybe because I schedule too many things to do.
  • Maybe because we are trying to reorganize and redecorate the studio, as well as run the business.

I remember the first year I didn’t bake Christmas cookies and how that made me feel. That’s when I realized that it is actually Okay to not get everything done.

it's okay clipart 

I was reading my Facebook messages this evening and was referred to my friend’s blog. She writes so much better than I do and her topic is “Lowering My Expectations as a mom during the holidays.”  BearHavenMama.com

Carol’s Carousel Creations
Where having Fun is why we come!


And we will be back in the studio next year.
Sunday, January 5th, at 1:00, Let it Snow WS
Monday, January 6th, at 6:00 Open Classes 




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