Painting
 
Will you paint a piece for me?
Yes. We have several excellent painters available for commissioned work. Lead time is required for the artist to execute your order. Prices depend on the size and complexity of the design. We sometimes have completed pieces available for sale, especially around holidays.

How does painting your own pottery work?
Enter our studio and choose an item from our large selection of bisque (pre-made, cleaned, once fired ceramic pieces). Select a table and answer a few questions from our staff. Design your piece. If you like, you may consult our library of design books and array of stencils, stamps, stickers, and other pattern aids. Our friendly staff is generally available for coaching or consulting whenever you paint. Choose paints and tools. (All of our paints and materials are nontoxic, and dishwasher and oven safe.) With a barely damp sponge, wipe your piece to remove dust. Relax and have fun executing your design. When you finish painting, check out with staff at the customer counter. We'll get a description of your piece (don't forget to sign your art work!) so we can be sure to return the correct piece to you. After your piece is thoroughly dry, Laurel Street Arts will glaze and fire it. We'll give you a call to pick up your piece in about 7 days.

Can I drop my child off to paint alone at Laurel Street Arts?
The safety of your children is our highest priority. Therefore, unless your child is registered for a class/event or over the age of 13, we request they have supervision.

Can I special order bisque pieces?
Sort of. We order from vendors all over the country and there is no single catalog you can look through. Also, we have minimum required purchases at most of our vendors so may not be able to place your special order for several months. Laurel Street Arts is happy to look for a special item for you and can call or email you if and when we find something we think you might like along with the price. If the piece is unusual or costly, we will require payment before we place the order for your piece.

Will you paint a piece for me?
Yes. We have several excellent painters available for commissioned work. Lead time is required, however, for the artist to execute your order. Prices depend upon the size and complexity of the design requested. We occasionally have completed pieces available for sale, especially around holidays.

Do your products contain lead?
With the exception of some products used in adult classes, all products used at Laurel Street Arts are certified non-toxic. Each bottle has a non-toxic label that shows you it is safe for you and your children. All of the glazes used by staff to finish your pieces are also non-toxic and contain no added lead.

Is it safe to eat off my piece?
All of our pieces painted with our standard paints are safe for eating. We offer some additional painting techniques that can be used for display pieces only and we will let you know when this is the case.

Are pieces safe for the dishwasher or microwave?
We recommend you treat all your handpainted works of art like fine china by handwashing and not using the microwave. The pieces are in the kiln for over 24 hours with a slow heat up and an even slower cool down. The quick change in temperature from the dishwasher and microwave can damage your creation.

What if I make a mistake when I'm painting?
Often you can correct your mistake simply by letting the paint dry and using an eraser. With lighter colors, you can simply paint over your mistake. Sometimes you may need to scrape off the paint with a toothpick or a sanding stone. Our paints are water-soluble and generally will wipe off a piece using a sponge and a little water. Some darker colors may actually soak into the pottery and will need additional measures.

I can't paint, I'm not artistic; can you help me?
Absolutely! We have patterns, stencils, sponges and stamps that can make anyone look like a pro. And our friendly staff is always glad to help.

Why does it take so long for my fired pottery to be finished?
We know your pieces are important to you and Laurel Street Arts makes every effort to finish your pottery so it will last. Each step in the finishing process is important and takes time. The paint on the piece must dry thoroughly. Half of the piece is then dipped in clear glaze and allowed to dry thoroughly. The other half of the piece is then dipped and allowed to dry thoroughly. After firing, the kiln must cool to a relatively low temperature before we can open it. This can take 24 hours or more. Premature opening of the kiln can crack the pieces. After the kiln is opened, we must smooth any rough surfaces to prevent injury. Simply put, a quality product takes time. In our experience, 7 days generally is sufficient to cover variables in preparation time for firing and in the number of items waiting to be fired during a given week.

I don’t like my handwriting, will you customize my pieces?
Yes. For $1 we’ll add your child’s name and the date to your piece. For additional wording, we charge $1 per word. Check with our staff for even more customization.
Laurel Street Arts
733 Laurel Street
San Carlos, CA 94070
650-591-1005
HOURS
Mon-Thurs
10 am - 7 pm
Fri-Sat
10 am - 8 pm
Sun
noon - 5 pm