Planning a design for your project is our first step in the process. Using good old fashioned graph paper, your chosen design is drawn to scale to your measurements. We will send you this plan depicting your preferred colour options along with glazed colour samples for your approval.
Once we have the go ahead, we can then cut templates. We have to take into account the shrinkage of the clay and allowance for grout before the actual size of each individual piece can be determined.
Slabs of fine, English, white earthenware clay are rolled and left to dry for a day before cutting around the templates. The edges are smoothed by hand and any impressions are made using various wheels and stamps.
Each piece is transferred to a board and taken to the damp cupboard where they will dry very slowly over 5 days. This process substantially reduces warping which is inherent with handmade flatware. After a further 5 days on open drying racks, each piece is loaded into the kiln and Bisque fired to 1100°c.
The clay is now hard and white and the pieces are checked and sorted ready to be glazed.
Depending on the ceramic glaze recipe, various raw materials, oxides and stains are carefully weighed, added to water and mixed by hand to a smooth creamy consistency.
Each piece is then hand dipped into the glaze often twice and returned to boards to allow to dry for a day, before reloading back into the kiln for a glaze firing that will reach a temperature of 1060°c. After waiting a further 12 hours for the kiln to cool - the finished pieces emerge.
If a crackle glaze is chosen we can enhance this by rubbing stain into the crackle lines. We usually use a medium grey colour as we find this a perfect balance of not being too overpowering, but enough to define.
A delivery date is agreed, then each piece is carefully packed, with any particular installation advice and sent via courier.