We make great mugs and yes, by hand. All of our mugs are made in our facility from start to finish using two different handcrafted processes. All of our work is either hand thrown on the pottery wheel or individually pressed, our logos are rolled out using a manual slab roller, then added to the body of our mugs, and each one is then handled, and stamped. Every mug we create is also marked with the initials of the person who made it because we take great pride in our products and our team of artisans who have dedicated decades to learning the art and craft of pottery. This is who we are and we love what we do!
The process is not easy. Many of our clients mention their own experiences with clay and it usually goes something like, “I took a class in high school because it looked easy and it’s a cool process only to find out…wow, it was really hard”, or “I learned the wheel once and loved it, but I never kept up with it”. Like anything, learning pottery is an undertaking. It takes patience, hard work, and a “madness” of sorts because things generally don’t work out on one’s first try, or second, or third…yet for some, a passion erupts and it becomes their life. It seeps into their dreams and all of sudden one finds themselves picking up scrap metal on the side of the road, or worse, head first into a dumpster in search of anything that can be used or formed into a tool. Potters love tools, and use them for everything from trimming to making interesting textures on their pots. But even after a potter masters the basic cylinder and other basic forms on the wheel, it takes years before they can make 10, or 100, or 1,000 look even remotely similar.
When you buy a set of mugs made from even the best and most experienced potter, they will all be slightly different. These subtle differences aren’t mistakes, in fact, they are what makes pottery so beautiful. Each pot has it’s own personality and will maintain it’s individuality yet assimilate beautifully among it’s peers in a set.
At our pottery, we work with each client individually to make mugs that emphasize their brand. And, we’re critical of each mug that we send and only select the very best from each batch that we make. This sometimes means we have losses because there are just so many variables present in the process of producing high quality stoneware pottery.
Clay is the most important part of making great mugs. We’re constantly evaluating our clay body to ensure it’s overall strength and it’s compatibility with our equipment and glaze chemistry. We’re also always testing our glazes to ensure that they’re compatible with our clay bodies. If the chemistry is off, it simply won’t work and the outcome can be devastating. Firing has it’s own charming variables, humidity, air temperature, and human error contribute to a mess of potential outcomes. So, we have to be diligent about each critical step in the firing process to ensure some control in the consistency of our results. Basically…clay, air, heat, moisture, & fuel are the fundamental elements and the rest we leave up to our kiln “goddesses”. We make offerings before each firing, and leave the fire and fuel process in their hands. Superstition has it’s virtues, especially in the process of making great pottery.
So this is just a taste of what goes into making our mugs great. We love working out the kinks so that enthusiasts can simply sit back and enjoy a choice beverage in a great mug, made by people who love making a living making great pottery!