Learning to throw clay on a pottery wheel is a basic skill every potter needs, and it is generally used to make round objects such as cups and cookie jars. After the basics have been mastered, many potters are looking for new skills to conquer. Making a decorative vase may be the challenge sought, and creating one made of find porcelain could result in a new skill. Bone china vases are also beautiful, and this would be a step up in the challenge of creating a unique vase.
The creation of the vase begins with the clay, and making porcelain rather than pottery takes knowledge of clay composition. Porcelain requires additional kaolin in the clay mixture, and this allows it to be fired at the kiln temperature required to transform the clay into porcelain rather than pottery. The reason a potter creates porcelain is for the finer grain of the finished piece, and this will also result in a smoother finish when decorated. Once a potter learns the basics of choosing clay, they have the knowledge required to begin their project of creating a fine porcelain vase.
People have long admired English fine bone china for its strength and translucent qualities. The light seems to shine through the piece, yet it can stand years of wear and tear. Potters, unless they are in England, cannot make the English version of this beautiful material, but they can still make fine bone china pieces of their own.
A vase made of bone china requires the addition of bone ash to the porcelain clay mixture, and this requires a pottery student to experiment with different amounts for the final product they desire. Once they have mixed their clay to the correct consistency, it is simply a matter of forming the clay for kiln firing and decoration to create the ultimate unique vase.