I fell in love with the feel of clay as a child, while playing in the clay dirt near home. In college, I took a ceramic arts course; and, between throwing my own pots and hand-modeling projects, I chose to concentrate on hand modeling. I quickly subscribed to Ceramics Monthly magazine, which is still in publication today. I purchased my first hobby kiln in 1975. Manufactured by Cress, the kiln cost me less than $200. Spending $200 on a kiln in 1975 would be equivalent to purchasing a kiln that sells for around $1,000 today. At the time of my purchase, there were three primary kiln manufacturers in the USA, Cress, Skutt, and Paragon. All three of those manufacturers are still in business.
At this stage in life, I am not all that interested in firing ceramics again, albeit I do have a production kiln that needs to be put into use or disposed of. I am more likely to fire some glass for jewelry projects in the microwave oven. I’m even thinking that might be a good application for Cricut projects in the months ahead.