I've mentioned that when I go into the studio, especially if it's been a while since I've thrown, I always start out by making small items, like bud vases or tiny bowls. These bowls are usually grouped in a large flat basket like the one pictured at left, a treasure trove of colors, textures, and shapes, all priced at a point where almost anyone, even my youngest customers (usually little girls with allowance money, attracted by the bright candy colors) can afford them. I love to watch my customers stack these bowls in their basket, rearranging them by shape and color. This is where I let myself go a little crazy with my colors- you won't find that granny smith apple green in much else that I make.
These tiny bowls are really useful, too. I have a small stash of them in my kitchen to use for salt or chopped herbs when I'm cooking- a casual mies en place. Larger, deeper bowls are good salt cellars. I like to use them for dipping bowls for homemade spring rolls and nam plam-based sauces. Two sit on my kitchen window sill- one for rings, one for a small cake of soap my little boy likes to use for washing his hands. I keep one in my bathroom- it is very shallow and wide, perfect for swirling around a kabuki brush in mineral makeup powders without making a huge mess(I am hooked on everyday minerals, which offers free samples and a huge range of foundation colors- at a fraction of the cost of well-known brands). A friend uses hers for spoon and teabag rests-both are shallow, flattish bowls, another selected deeper bowls, still not quite ramekins, similar to the white bowls with blue and green interiors on the right side of the basket, for serving condiments. It's been fun for me to see and hear the creative uses friends and customers have come up with for my tiny bowls.