Step 9 – Finishing the Handle

Here’s where we left off in the last post, just having gently pressed the new, soft handle onto the scored spot that was prepared before the handle pulling started. The handle is very tender at this point, and it’s easy to deform it with a careless gesture.

You can see the handle extending past the bottom of the cup. I let the handle form a bond to the cup while I do a little refining with a small sponge at the top attachment.

I have pinched off all but about an inch of the extra clay at the bottom of the handle. This will be enough to make the little bunp that I like at the base of my handles.

I form the little bump by folding one side of the the extra handle stock to the middle, and then folding the other side over it. I fiddle around with my finger until I get it like I want it.

This cup handle is related to handles that I have seen on early American pewter cups and pitchers. I feel that the little bump at the bottom balances out the volume of the curve at the top of the handle, and makes visual sense to me.
I dry these cups right side up. If you invert the cup, the handle will dry faster than the cup and be in danger of cracking off. In summer, I cover them with plastic for a couple of days so handle and cup can slowly dry together.

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