When my husband and I were engaged, he loved to register for our wedding. Why, you ask? Because at every place we went, someone would sit us down and a conversation like this would follow:
Employee: “So, since you are registering for your wedding, you’d probably like to take a look at our catalog of china patterns and pick out a setting for your guests to purchase.”
B (my husband): “Oh, no thank you. We won’t be needing that.” Big smile at me.
Employee: “Oh, really? Have you already registered for china somewhere else?”
B: “No. We don’t need to. My wife is a potter, and she is going to make our china.”
Those conversations were happening years ago. Three years ago, to be exact. And for almost all of those three years, I have been working in porcelain, working on fairly functional pieces, and using mostly food safe glazes. Now, after almost three years of marriage and a number of shows and countless hours in the studio, would you like to guess how many dishes in our cupboard were made by yours truly?
Yeah. Like, less than 5.
Ironically, my last show was a show of place settings, but none of them are in my home. Oh, yes, the road to hell is paved with good intentions…
We ate off of plastic odds and ends for the past two years until we finally broke down and sold our souls by buying some cheap, massed produced dishes from Ikea. It was painful.
But there is good news. Great news, actually. Amazing news.
I sent out one email to the right group of potters, and by 5pm found a woman who lives 5 minutes from me down the road who has been looking for a friend to share a studio with. She just ‘happens’ to have two wheels, two kilns, a slab roller, and a space for making things. Amazing, I know. This morning I was able to go visit Kathleen at her home to see her studio. To her, it’s a mess spread between cinderblock walls and crowded by shelves of camping equipment and Christmas decorations in her basement, but to me, it’s heaven. I am going to help her get things organized and production should start soon.
Now the ideas start to churn. There is so much stuff flying around in my head I can’t even get it down. I have already missed the deadline for a show I wanted to enter, and only 10 months left to meet my goal of entering 4 shows this year. There are galleries I want to contact, a website in shambles that needs updating, and oh, clay, lots and lots and lots of clay….and glazes! Oh my, glazes to mix and things to make and glaze and oh, oh, I am so excited….
But I think I have a feeling what will be the first thing I work on when I get the studio ready. Dishes.