Craft Britannia Shop of The Week #6, CariadClay
In our CraftBritannia Shop of the Week interview this week, Chloe from CariadClay tells us more about herself. Read on to learn more about the creator of the beautiful nature-inspired ceramic magnets, buttons and jewellery in her shop!
Describe your “typical” working day or week
Where to start! Well, because the pottery process has so many phases and I’m always juggling various groups of work, it’s hard to track the course of one single item. But a “typical” day goes something like this:
First I check convo’s & Etsy’s front page, etc. If it’s a Monday or Thursday, I look at the BNS rota and set up the list ready for the next round, then convo it to the curators. This is all done around getting one child up and to school in the morning, while looking after my youngest until she goes to nursery in the afternoon. A fter dropping her off, when I finally get 2 hours to myself, I clean through and pack any outstanding orders. I take these to the post office on my way to the school run.
A fter school to 7pm is family time, so homework, baths, dinner, reading etc . Then we wind down until both children are in bed at 8pm . If hubby has a night off I tend to spend time with him, as well as keeping up with Etsy convos or the CraftBritannia team. If hubby is working then I get either clay time, me time or team time :) Clay time is spent either making, cleaning up dried work for the kiln, packing the kiln, unpacking the kiln, glazing, or sorting finished work – normally it’s a mixture of these activities.
Making something like a button goes through all these processes - first it is formed from clay , then needs to dry for a day or two (until it’s fired it’s called greenware). Next it needs to be cleaned up and all the edges smoothed, before it is fired to the Bisque stage – which is when pottery is hard and more sturdy. The piece is then glazed with colour glaze, then covered in clear glaze ,and finally it is fired again .
I normally have a shelf of greenware, most of which is finished ready for cleaning, but some is wrapped up waiting to be finished. I also have a shelf of bisque ware waiting to be glazed, and I store some work like this ready for special colour requests, so they can be completed more quickly. And finally I have a shelf full of completed work, organised into sections of listed pieces and not listed . Phew! I sound so organised, but in reality I do all the above in a hap hazard way!
When you are not doing Etsy related things, what are you doing?
This is easy – spending time with my family, reading or exercising.
What material do you most enjoy working with?
It has to be clay 🙂 I love how it feels in my hands, and making such a variety of things which can be functional or just pretty, or both. But when time allows I like to play with fabric – I don’t sew very well, but I enjoy it and have recently been trying felting.
If you could try a new craft, what would it be?
I have always wanted to try silversmithing, as I adore silver jewellery and would love to make some for me and my daughters. One day maybe!
Which piece of equipment would you be helpless without?
My kiln, of course 🙂
Tell us about one handmade item that you own and love
I have so many! But at the moment it has to be this lovely ring from Alison Moore designs
What plans do you have for your shop in the future?
Just to get a little more organised and less haphazard with my making process, LOL!
Thank you Chloe! It’s been lovely to learn more about you 🙂