Friday 31 January 2014


Evening all

Here's a little film of what we did today. Hannah is a fantastic decorator. It's rare that I would be brave enough to decorate one of her pieces, but the grasses on the centre of the large platter are by my hand, further embellished by Hannah's slip trailing. I'm a reluctant decorator, but Hannah encourages me and gives me confidence. I've always avoided flatware because of this, but I enjoyed my simplistic efforts on the big plate, a special moment captured in slip forever.

The little jug that I've been sgrafittoing is one of a number I was hoping to have available should anybody be looking for a Valentines Day gift for their loved one. The phrase on the front is appropriately by the Scottish Bard, Robert Burns. There are five of these little jugs, but as it's taken me all week to decorate just the one, maybe I'm being a bit ambitious to think that any more than this one will get completed in time. I expect I'll leave the other four here to scratch on, next time I visit in a couple of weeks time.

Tomorrow we open the wood kiln which will be exciting. I'll let you know how it goes. We know the bottom is a bit underfired in places, but otherwise we feel fairly optimistic that we did a good job - you never can tell though.

In the afternoon, we're heading off to Lancashire to visit Alex, before heading to Ruthin in Wales on Sunday, where Alex and I are presenting a talk at the Ruthin Craft Centre. After that, Hannah and I will continue on the long journey back to Devon where little Bernard the cat will be waiting to welcome us home no doubt.

Back tomorrow with firing news, be it good or bad

Goodnight all.

Wednesday 29 January 2014

Fired, tired, bed zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


Tuesday 28 January 2014

Stacked and packed

We finished the pack just as it went dark. There's no electricity in Hannah's kiln shed, so it was done just in time. It's going to be mighty chilly in the morning when we head off up the road at 6am to start the firing.

Here's a little film of the day's action

Off to bed to get some sleep in readiness for a busy day tomorrow. I'll let you know how it goes.

Goodnight all

Sunday 26 January 2014


Evening all
Here's a little film from today. I made storage jars and lids which will stay under wraps until I get back from Scotland.

I feel like I'm emerging from a debilitating episode of maker's block. My recent trip to Hannah's did the world of good for my confidence and made me realise that I can still make boards full of pots. For a while I just didn't want to make pots any more. Last year I was burned out, this year, I've found a new energy.

So an early start tomorrow and a long train journey to Hannah's, then a few busy days packing and firing her kiln.

I'll report back from across the border. I'd better go and pack my bag

Goodnight all

Another loooooooooooooooooooooooooong day

I'm putting the hours in at the moment while the creative juices are flowing - maybe I'm just trying to avoid the dreaded tax return? Whatever it is, it's working and I'm enjoying making pots again. There was a time when I felt like I didn't want to do it any more and I couldn't see my way forward.

Tomorrow I'm heading off to Scotland to see my love and inspiration Ms McAndrew, for her firing. It's good to know I'll be coming home to a whole lot of pots in the workshop.Better still to know she'll be coming with me.

It's pouring with rain again today, yesterday was wild and windy, you can hear the tin roof banging in the wind on this little film.

Oh well, this won't do, off to work I go, jars today I think. Back later, Happy Sunday y'all

Saturday 25 January 2014

looooooooong day

My goodness, that was a long day's work

Friday 24 January 2014

Hannah's and back

I'm back in Devon for a few days and getting back in to the swing of potting in my own workshop. I've been making tankards and beakers today. I haven't any photos yet, but here are a few more from last week at Hannah's.

We had such a wonderful time, making pots by day and watching pottery films on youtube by night. It sounds dull to most people I'm sure, but to us it was a really, really, lovely.

We had a most enjoyable day out, visiting our friends at the Castlegate House Gallery.  

We delivered a collection of new work. Here are a couple of examples, I pinched the picture from their web site, photo credit Steve Swallow

Costrel made by Hannah, fired in the wood kiln here at Hollyford, it's a beautiful pot this one, lots of flashed up naked clay and really well executed fingerwiping.

One of my moneyboxes, inspired by the crows in the winter trees.

This is a dribbly slip pot I made at Hannah's. The challenge with these is to get the timing right with the comb and slip, so that the runs don't go too far - this is just how I wanted it.
These little ones will be sgrafittoed. A couple of them collapsed as they probably a bit too damp when the slip went on .

The pots we made are going into a wood firing next week, which is to celebrate Hannah's ten years in business. She's made a special seal with an X on it which her pots are marked with.

I'm so proud of her and what she's done. She's worked extrememly hard and invested so much energy in to her work during the last ten years, she makes beautiful things.

I'm looking forward to next week as I'm heading back up on the train on Monday to help glaze and pack, then fire the kiln. Hopefully we'll have time to watch some more pottery films on youtube, woohoo!!! I can't wait.

Here's a pottery film below - ah, you watch them too!

Have a great Friday everybody

Tuesday 14 January 2014

Tuesday at Hannah's

 Hello all

 Well I'm still here in Scotland and having a really wonderful time making pots with Hannah.

We worked a long day today. I have to head back to Devon on Wednesday, so there are a lot of pots that will need finishing before I go.

I love making pots with Hannah, we've always been able to work alongside each other, which is a good job as we plan on spending a lot more time together!

Thursday 9 January 2014

Funny and lovely :)

My girl, funny and lovely :)

Tuesday 7 January 2014

Happy New Year!

Hello everybody. Happy New Year to you all.

I'm in Scotland at the moment making pots with Hannah which has been just lovely. Here's a little video of today's throwing - it's my turn to ball up for her tomorrow! These are happy days indeed.