20 Simple and Creative Ceramic Projects for Beginners to Craft
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 13 min read


1. Hand-building Easy Ceramic Projects

2. Easy Ceramic Projects with Pottery Wheel

3. Decorative Easy Ceramic Projects

4. Functional Easy Ceramic Projects

5. Easy Ceramic Projects for Kids

6. Glazing and Finishing Techniques for Easy Ceramic Projects

Diving into the world of ceramics can be a fascinating and rewarding experience. With a little guidance and practice, anyone can create beautiful, functional, and unique pieces. This blog post will guide you through 20 simple and creative ceramic projects perfect for beginners. These easy ceramic projects are divided into various categories, from hand-building techniques to decorative and functional items. So, let's get started with hand-building easy ceramic projects!

1. Hand-building Easy Ceramic Projects

Hand-building is the most basic and accessible way to start working with ceramics. It allows you to create beautiful pieces without any specialized equipment. Here are three hand-building techniques perfect for beginners:

Pinch Pots

Pinch pots are an excellent introduction to ceramics for those who are new to the craft. They are easy to create and can be used for a variety of purposes, such as holding small items or serving as decorative accents. To create a pinch pot:

  1. Begin by rolling a ball of clay in your hands.
  2. Press your thumb into the center of the ball, creating a small indentation.
  3. Using your fingers and thumb, gently pinch and form the clay to make the walls of the pot.
  4. Smooth the edges and surface of the pot as desired.

Once you've mastered the basic pinch pot technique, you can experiment with different shapes and sizes to create a variety of easy ceramic projects.

Coil Pots

Coil pots are another simple hand-building technique that can be used to create a wide range of shapes and sizes. This method involves rolling out long coils of clay and stacking them to form the walls of the pot. Here's a step-by-step guide to making a coil pot:

  1. Start by rolling out a coil of clay approximately the thickness of your finger.
  2. Begin shaping the base of your pot by coiling the clay in a spiral pattern.
  3. Continue to add coils, stacking them one on top of the other, and gently pressing them together to form the walls of the pot.
  4. Smooth out the coils using a damp sponge or your fingers to create a seamless surface.

Coil pots can be as simple or intricate as you like, making them an ideal easy ceramic project for beginners looking to develop their skills.

Slab Building

Slab building is another hand-building technique that involves rolling out flat sheets of clay and cutting them into shapes to create your desired object. This technique is great for making boxes, vases, and even larger items like serving platters. To create a slab-built piece:

  1. Roll out a flat sheet of clay—use a rolling pin or a slab roller if you have access to one.
  2. Cut your desired shapes using a knife or a clay cutting tool.
  3. Assemble the pieces by scoring and slipping the edges, then pressing them together to form a strong bond.
  4. Smooth the seams and edges, and add any desired details or embellishments.

Slab building can be a versatile and rewarding technique for beginners, allowing you to create a wide range of easy ceramic projects with minimal tools and equipment.

2. Easy Ceramic Projects with Pottery Wheel

Now that you've explored hand-building techniques, it's time to dive into pottery wheel projects! The pottery wheel allows you to create symmetrical and more complex shapes with ease. Don't worry if you've never used a wheel before—these easy ceramic projects are perfect for beginners to get started. Let's take a look at some beginner-friendly pottery wheel projects:

Wheel-Thrown Bowls

Creating a wheel-thrown bowl is a fantastic way to practice your pottery wheel skills. Bowls are versatile and functional, making them a great addition to your collection of easy ceramic projects. To create a wheel-thrown bowl:

  1. Center your clay on the wheel and wet it with water or slip.
  2. Press down on the clay with your hands to form a cone shape, then push the clay back up into a cylinder.
  3. Open the center of the clay by pressing your thumbs down and outward.
  4. Use your fingers and hands to shape the walls of the bowl, pulling them upward and outward as the wheel spins.
  5. Finish the rim of the bowl with a sponge or a tool, and then trim away any excess clay from the base.

Once you've mastered the basic bowl shape, you can try adding unique features like a foot or handles for added functionality and style.

Wheel-Thrown Mugs

Who doesn't love a good mug? Wheel-thrown mugs are another excellent easy ceramic project for beginners. Creating a mug requires a bit more precision than a bowl, but the result is a functional and personalized piece you can use every day. Follow these steps to make a wheel-thrown mug:

  1. Begin by centering a cylinder of clay on the wheel, just as you did for the bowl.
  2. Open the clay and form the walls of the mug by pulling the clay upward and slightly inward.
  3. Smooth the surface and shape the lip of the mug for comfortable drinking.
  4. Once the mug is leather-hard, trim away excess clay from the base and attach a handle using the scoring and slipping technique.

Feel free to experiment with different shapes, sizes, and handle designs to create a truly one-of-a-kind piece.

Wheel-Thrown Plates

Complete your easy ceramic project collection by adding wheel-thrown plates to your repertoire. Plates are a bit more challenging than bowls and mugs, but with a bit of practice, you'll be able to create beautiful and functional pieces. Here's how to create a wheel-thrown plate:

  1. Start with a larger piece of clay centered on the wheel and form a wide, shallow cylinder.
  2. Press down gently on the center to create a flat surface for the plate.
  3. Smooth and shape the edges of the plate by pulling the clay outward and upward with your fingertips.
  4. Trim away excess clay from the base and refine the rim of the plate using a sponge or a tool.

As you become more comfortable with wheel-throwing techniques, you can experiment with different plate sizes, shapes, and rim designs to make your easy ceramic projects truly unique.

3. Decorative Easy Ceramic Projects

Now that you've tackled some functional pottery wheel projects, let's explore the world of decorative ceramics. These easy ceramic projects are perfect for adding a touch of creativity and artistic flair to your home or workspace. Ready to give it a try? Let's dive into some beginner-friendly decorative ceramic projects:

Ceramic Wall Hangings

Looking for a simple yet striking way to adorn your walls? Ceramic wall hangings are an excellent choice for beginners. With just a few basic tools and techniques, you can create beautiful wall art that showcases your personal style. Here's how to get started:

  1. Roll out a slab of clay to your desired thickness, and cut it into the shape you'd like for your wall hanging.
  2. Add texture or patterns using stamps, found objects, or carving tools. Be creative and let your imagination run wild!
  3. Don't forget to create a hole or attach a small loop of clay to the top of your wall hanging, so you'll be able to hang it up later.
  4. Once your piece is completely dry, bisque fire it, and then apply glaze or underglaze to enhance the design and add color.

Experiment with different shapes, sizes, and designs to create a collection of unique ceramic wall hangings that showcase your artistic flair.

Ceramic Sculptures

If you're looking to create something more three-dimensional, why not try your hand at ceramic sculptures? These easy ceramic projects can be as simple or as complex as you like, making them perfect for beginners who want to develop their skills. Here's a simple process to follow:

  1. Start by sketching out your design, and then create a basic armature (a support structure) out of newspaper or wire if needed.
  2. Build up your sculpture using slabs, coils, or pinched pieces of clay. Remember to score and slip the clay to ensure proper adhesion.
  3. Use your fingers or sculpting tools to refine the shape, smooth the surfaces, and add any details or textures you desire.
  4. Once your sculpture is completely dry, bisque fire it, and then apply glaze or underglaze to add color and depth.

With patience and practice, you'll be able to create stunning ceramic sculptures that capture your unique vision and artistic style.

Ceramic Tiles

Want to add a touch of handmade charm to your home? Ceramic tiles are a fantastic easy ceramic project that allows you to create custom designs for your kitchen, bathroom, or even outdoor spaces. Here's a simple guide to making your own ceramic tiles:

  1. Roll out a slab of clay to a consistent thickness, and then cut it into squares or rectangles using a straightedge and a sharp knife.
  2. Add texture, pattern, or design elements to your tiles using stamps, carving tools, or even objects from around your home.
  3. Allow your tiles to dry completely, and then bisque fire them to prepare for glazing.
  4. Apply glaze to your tiles using brushes, sponges, or other techniques, and then fire them once more to achieve a glossy, durable finish.

By experimenting with different designs and glazing techniques, you can create a stunning array of ceramic tiles that reflect your personal style and brighten up your living spaces.

4. Functional Easy Ceramic Projects

Now that we've explored some decorative and artistic projects, it's time to create functional ceramics that you can use every day. These easy ceramic projects will not only enhance the beauty of your home, but also serve a practical purpose. Let's check out some functional easy ceramic projects you can start today:

Ceramic Planters

Ceramic planters are an excellent way to bring life and greenery into your living spaces. They can be personalized to match your home's décor and are perfect for indoor or outdoor use. Here's how you can create your own ceramic planter:

  1. Choose a hand-building technique, such as pinch pots or coil pots, to create the base of your planter.
  2. Add drainage holes at the bottom, so your plants can grow healthily without getting waterlogged.
  3. Experiment with textures, patterns, or even sculptural elements to give your planter a unique appearance.
  4. Once your planter is completely dry, bisque fire it, and then apply glaze for a beautiful, waterproof finish.

With a little creativity and some clay, you can craft one-of-a-kind planters that add a touch of nature to your living spaces.

Ceramic Vases

Another functional and beautiful addition to any home is a ceramic vase. Vases can hold flowers, plants, or even stand alone as decorative pieces. Here's how to create your own ceramic vase:

  1. Start by choosing a hand-building method or using a pottery wheel to form the shape of your vase.
  2. Consider the size, shape, and style that will best complement your flowers or plants. Don't be afraid to try something new!
  3. Add texture or design elements to make your vase stand out. This could include carving, slip trailing, or attaching additional clay pieces.
  4. After your vase is dry, bisque fire it, and then apply glaze for a beautiful, glossy finish.

Creating your own ceramic vase allows you to showcase your personal style while also providing a functional purpose in your home.

Ceramic Dinnerware

One of the most rewarding easy ceramic projects is creating your own dinnerware. Not only does it allow you to express your creativity, but it's also a practical way to enjoy your meals. Here's a simple process for making ceramic dinnerware:

  1. Choose the type of dinnerware you'd like to create, such as plates, bowls, or mugs. This will determine the best technique to use, like slab building or pottery wheel.
  2. Consider the size and shape that will work best for your needs. Keep in mind that clay shrinks when fired, so plan accordingly.
  3. Add personal touches to your dinnerware, like textures, patterns, or unique edges. This is a chance to make your pieces truly one-of-a-kind.
  4. Allow your dinnerware to dry, then bisque fire it. Afterward, apply glaze for a durable and food-safe finish.

Creating your own ceramic dinnerware is not only fun, but it also makes every meal feel more special when you're using pieces you've crafted with your own hands.

These functional easy ceramic projects are a fantastic way to combine your artistic skills with practical applications. Whether you're crafting planters, vases, or dinnerware, you'll be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor in your daily life—making your home a more beautiful and personalized space.

5. Easy Ceramic Projects for Kids

As we've explored various easy ceramic projects, it's important to remember that ceramics can be a fun and rewarding activity for kids as well. Engaging children in creative projects helps them develop motor skills, express themselves, and explore their artistic interests. In this section, we'll introduce three easy ceramic projects designed specifically for kids:

Ceramic Animals

Ceramic animals are a fun and accessible project for children of all ages. They can create their favorite animals or let their imaginations run wild with their own unique creations. Here's how to help your child create a ceramic animal:

  1. Start with a simple hand-building technique like pinch pots or coil pots to create the body of the animal.
  2. Encourage your child to add details like eyes, ears, tails, or other features using small pieces of clay. This is a great opportunity for them to practice their fine motor skills.
  3. Once the animal is complete, let it dry completely before bisque firing and glazing. This process will help ensure their creation lasts for years to come.

By crafting their own ceramic animals, children can develop their artistic abilities while also creating a fun, personalized keepsake.

Ceramic Pendants

Another easy ceramic project for kids is creating ceramic pendants. These can be made into necklaces, keychains, or even ornaments for a unique, personal touch. Here's how to guide your child through the process of making ceramic pendants:

  1. Begin with a small piece of clay and have your child shape it into their desired pendant shape, such as a heart, star, or even their initial.
  2. Use a toothpick or a small tool to poke a hole in the pendant, which will be used later for attaching a cord or chain.
  3. Encourage your child to add details, textures, or patterns to their pendant using various tools or their fingers.
  4. After the pendant has dried, bisque fire and glaze it to give it a lasting, beautiful finish.

Creating ceramic pendants allows children to express themselves through wearable art and can even make for thoughtful, handmade gifts for friends and family.

Ceramic Handprints

Lastly, ceramic handprints are a timeless and sentimental project that kids will love. These keepsakes can be displayed in your home or gifted to loved ones. Here's how to create a ceramic handprint with your child:

  1. Roll out a piece of clay to about 1/2-inch thickness, making sure it's large enough to fit your child's handprint.
  2. Have your child press their hand firmly into the clay, leaving a clear imprint. Make sure they don't press too hard, or they may tear the clay.
  3. Use a knife or clay tool to carefully cut around the handprint, leaving a border for a finished look.
  4. Allow the handprint to dry, then bisque fire and glaze it for a lasting keepsake.

Ceramic handprints are a wonderful way to capture a moment in time and serve as a cherished memento for years to come.

Incorporating these easy ceramic projects into your child's artistic endeavors is an excellent way to foster creativity, develop motor skills, and create lasting memories. Whether they're crafting animals, pendants, or handprints, children will be proud of their handmade creations and eager to explore the world of ceramics further.

6. Glazing and Finishing Techniques for Easy Ceramic Projects

After exploring various easy ceramic projects, it's time to discuss the final touches that will bring your creations to life. Glazing and finishing techniques not only enhance the visual appeal of your work, but also make them more durable and functional. In this section, we will dive into three popular methods that can be applied to your easy ceramic projects:

Underglaze Decorating

Underglaze decorating is a versatile technique that allows you to add color and detail to your ceramic pieces before glazing. With a wide range of colors available, underglazes offer a creative way to personalize your work. Here's how you can use underglazes in your easy ceramic projects:

  • Choose your colors: Underglazes come in a variety of colors, so pick the ones that best suit your project and desired style.
  • Apply the underglaze: Using brushes, sponges, or even your fingers, apply the underglaze to your bisque-fired piece. You can create detailed patterns or abstract designs — the choice is yours!
  • Let it dry: Allow the underglaze to dry completely before moving on to the glazing stage. This prevents smudging and ensures a clean, crisp finish.

Experimenting with underglaze decorating will add a unique touch to your easy ceramic projects, making them truly one-of-a-kind.

Glaze Application

Applying glaze to your ceramic pieces not only adds color and shine, but also protects the surface and makes it more durable. There are several methods for glaze application, each producing distinct results. Let's explore some popular techniques for glaze application in easy ceramic projects:

  • Dipping: This method involves dipping your bisque-fired piece into a container of glaze. It's a quick and easy way to achieve an even, all-over color.
  • Brushing: For more control over the glaze application, you can use brushes to paint the glaze onto your piece. This technique is ideal for adding details or creating gradients of color.
  • Spraying: If you have access to a spray booth, spraying glaze onto your piece can create interesting textures and effects. This method requires more equipment but offers a unique finish.

Whichever method you choose, glaze application is an essential step in completing your easy ceramic projects and giving them a professional, polished look.

Sgraffito Technique

Looking for a way to add intricate designs and texture to your easy ceramic projects? The sgraffito technique might be just what you need. This carving method involves removing layers of underglaze or slip to reveal the clay body beneath, creating striking contrast and depth. Here's how to incorporate sgraffito into your work:

  1. Apply underglaze or slip: Coat your leather-hard or dry piece with a layer of underglaze or slip in a contrasting color to the clay body. This will create the background for your sgraffito design.
  2. Carve your design: Using a sharp tool, such as a needle or a carving tool, carefully scratch away the underglaze or slip to reveal the clay underneath. You can create any design you like — from simple geometric patterns to elaborate illustrations.
  3. Finish and fire: Once you're satisfied with your sgraffito design, let the piece dry completely before bisque firing and glazing.

Sgraffito is a fantastic way to add a personal touch to your easy ceramic projects, and with practice, you can achieve stunning results that showcase your artistic flair.

With these glazing and finishing techniques in your arsenal, you'll be well-equipped to bring your easy ceramic projects to life. Whether you're working on hand-built pieces, wheel-thrown creations, or decorative items, mastering these methods will elevate your work and make your ceramic journey all the more rewarding. Happy crafting!

If you're eager to dive into the world of ceramics and try out some creative projects, be sure to explore Meghan Yarnell's workshop, 'Pottery Basics: Everything You Need To Know.' This comprehensive workshop will equip you with the essential knowledge and techniques to kickstart your journey into pottery, ensuring you have a strong foundation to build upon. Happy crafting!