Sailor Vee

leaf tileI’ve been slapping leaf sprigs from the Green Man construction all over the place, and here they are on a tile, coated with my favourite blue glaze. The last  of my stock  sold last weekend, but some nifty footwork in the studio has produced a new batch – which should be coming out of the kiln as our first visitors surge up the drive on Saturday on Day 3 of the Arts Trail. Sod’s Law says none of them will sell. As I said, c’est la vie.

Building the Ship as we Sail down the Harbour

EAT13 gallery -2

This is it, almost my total stock. Perilously little for 5 days of Arts Trail. A lot went last weekend at the Art in the Garden Trail, and it has been too cold recently to get much more made. EAT13  gallery -1On the  upside, I’m pleased with the gallery (as I like to call my garage). Pointedly, no photo of the studio, but come opening time tomorrow it will be spruce. If I say that often enough, it’s bound to be true.EAT gallery -3Oh, and then there are all the neode pots on the window wall – forgot about those. And all the Green Men, sun tiles, leaf tiles and  fish tiles. Not too bad then. Roll on tomorrow morning.

Emsworth Arts Trail

EAT brochureJust a couple of days to go and the pace is manic. Oh dear – the weather is starting to look like a repeat of last year. Never mind, the kiln will be on, and the wood-burner, and the kettle, so we can snug down and moan about the cold. The screenshot above is of the front and back pages of the brochure – spot Pete’s Pots!

Neodes & Neologisms

neode w rimAmongst the bigger pots these are one of my top sellers, and  always attract comments and questions such as   “What are they for?”, “How do you make them?”, “What are they called?” . The answers are: “Anything or nothing”, “It’s a secret”, and “Neodes”.  I’m waiting for the call from the OED.

The Orbs are Back in Town

Back in the UK and all the ware which was drying out nicely while we were getting soaked in the Pyrenees is lined up for firing. First batch for biscuiting included the bigger orbs and a couple of large plates. All the stock orbs sold during the Open Studio days in May, as did the ‘tyre’ planters – replacements for these went in the kiln as the orbs came out.

All ticked off

Finally I have made the last of the items for orders received at the Open Studios weekends. But for the Irish trip, they would all have been fired and delivered by now – apologies to those affected. All the sempervivum (house leek) planters in stock sold at the time, even though they were a bit wonky and narrowly escaped the bin. I think I’ve cracked the technique now, tricky but satisfying. Working out how to make unfamiliar items is a large part of the joy of making them.

The Rowans Collection and a Little R&R

The blog has been quiet for the last 3 weeks as we have been in SW Ireland. A great trip but disappointing on the pottery front. For example we visited a couple of high profile potteries where the work was, in my opinion, a blatant rip-off targetted at tourists. Ridiculously expensive for what it was, ie poorly made, lacking elegance, churned out in quantity with little attention to detail, etc.

On the upside, The Rowans Hospice have told me that our Arts Trail collection on their behalf was worth nearly £75 with Gift Aid included. Our deep thanks go to everyone who contributed.

The snails? On the wall of the Signal Station at Mizen Head. Design inspiration – see them on a pot soon. Oh, and if you find yourself near Dingle, do visit the Phoenix Restaurant. Beautiful place, beautiful people.

No Rest for the Wicked?

Another superb weekend for the Arts Trail  Open Studio. This time the sun shone, so there was a lot of sitting in the sun and chit-chatting.  A big party and a really great time. People were very generous with the Rowans collecting tins; I’ll post the total amount here when I know it.  I’m trying to keep the gallery much as it was, because numerous people asked if it was possible to come and visit at any time.  On the other hand, I need the working space for the slab roller and the bigger pots, so I’ve put covers over the shelves to keep the dust off. The gallery will probably stay for the rest of the year.  Meanwhile, I’ve got a batch of commissions to work through. No rest for the wicked, as the candle commiserated with the oil lamp.

Arts Trail w/e 1

We have had the most wonderful 3 days, with a steady stream of visitors to the studios. We are some way off the main Trail, so anyone making the effort to come here, especially in the cold & wind & rain, probably had a particular interest in pottery, knitting or weaving. Many friends & neighbours also popped in, some that we hadn’t seen for a while. The wood-burner in the pottery kept us cosy, and the lemon drizzle & flapjack took a hammering. So did the stock, but we are still good for next weekend.

O&P go to Sea

Day 2 of the Arts Trail, and another lovely day. We had a steady stream of visitors,  lots of chatting and drinking tea in the studio huddled round  the wood-burner. From this you may gather that it was another wild wet and windy one, but spirits were not dampened. This evening O&P went to Thornham Marina to take their position in the Arts Trail exhibition tent ready for tomorrow. We also had a chance to have a good look at the boat. Absolutely fantastic, what a visionary idea, what superb craftsmanship.   Double-click to enlarge pics.

A Flying Start

Despite the cold and the rain it has been a great day, with a steady stream of visitors who seemed to like the pots and certainly bought a lot. Thank goodness I have built up a good stock level, otherwise by Day 5, at this rate, it would be “Yes, I do make pots, but I’m afraid I haven’t got any to show you”. In the afternoon I did a session on the wheel which seemed to go down well, and the lump of mud obediently transformed into a fine  jug which is earmarked as a present for one of our guests.

Open & ‘oping

Things are looking up – the forecast has changed from heavy rain to light rain for today.  All is spruce and dapper, and apart from everyhting that I”ve forgotten to do, everything is done. Our first visitor arrived on the dot of 10, a  passing dog-walker, who stayed for a chat and a browse.  The rain has stopped, no-one has nicked the wind-sock and poster in the road yet, so all is good.