Handbuilt Pet Boxes

Designer: Alex Paat



  1. Cut out shapes from pattern
  2. Trace shapes onto cardboard or cardstock to use as stencils for cutting clay.
  3. Decide what pet or animal to base your box off of.
  4. Draw your animal ideas onto your stencils.
  5. Roll out a slab that is about a quarter-inch thick.
  6. Compress slab with a plastic card.
  7. Using a fettling toothpick, trace and cut out shapes from compressed slab.
  8. If using the pattern, cut out 1 of shape A (top), 4 of shape B (sides), and 1 of shape C (bottom).
  9. Smooth out cut edges with a damp sponge.
  10. Cut a beveled edge on all sides of each shape with a fettling knife. To create a beveled edge, bring your clay slab to the end of the table and use the table to hold your fettling knife or bevel cutter sturdy at a 45-degree angle to cut.
  11. Attach the beveled angles together by scoring and slipping.
  12. Roll a thin coil and press into each corner as extra support at the seam.
  13. Smoosh ends together and smooth out the seam
  14. Repeat steps 1-3 with all sides of the box.
  15. With a damp sponge, clean up surfaces.
  16. Attach ear shapes to the top of the box by scoring and slipping.
  17. Allow the clay to reach a semi-leatherhard state.
  18. Using a craft knife, carefully cut off the top of the box to form the lid.
  19. Cut at an angle to ensure the lid doesn’t slip off the box when put together.
  20. With a soft fan brush, apply 3 coats of your glaze to the sides and top of boxes. Be sure to not get glaze where the lid and body of the box meet.
  21. When glaze is no longer shiny, use a loop tool and/or toothpick to carve your animal details through the glaze and into the box.
  22. With the lid off the box, allow the box and lid to dry completely.
  23. Dry foot or stilt
  24. Fire straight to shelf cone 06



  • 5lbs of clay


  • Elements glazes

Decorating Accessories

  • CB-106 # 6 Script Liner
  • CB-604 # 4 Soft Fan

Miscellaneous Accessories

  • Sponge
  • Water
  • Cardboard or cardstock
  • Plastic card
  • toothpick
  • craft knife
  • loop tool