The technique of using horse hair in raku firings creates striking lines across the surface of the ceramic.
The pottery piece is formed, then burnished. Burnished pottery works best, as the smooth unglazed surface accepts the carbon marking with the strongest effect. The piece is fired to between 1300 F and 1800 F in a raku kiln. Using the raku kiln allows much easier access to the pottery. Once the correct temperature is reached, the incandescent pottery is taken from the kiln using long raku tongs and proper gauntlets and other protective gear. The hot pottery is placed on a non-flammable surface (such as a piece of broken kiln shelf) and the selected hairs are draped onto it. Once the piece has cooled completely, it is washed to remove residue. It can then be waxed to bring out the markings.