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Sustainable Practice


My Method

I have chosen to work with stoneware as it is durable and strong and should last a lifetime if looked after well. My clay comes from St. Agnes, 5 miles from here,  where it is dug and mixed on site. I also recycle and reuse all leftover bits of clay and mix this with new clay to use again.While I admire the beautiful effects created by wood and gas firing, I prefer to use a very efficient electric kiln (and renewable energy supplier) to limit my environmental impact. I mix my own slips and glazes, so I can control which ingredients are used: I buy from suppliers who can reassure me as to the origin of raw materials, and avoid using toxic ingredients.

After much experimentation, I have started to use the single firing method to fire some of my pots. The fact that they are fired once rather than twice, results in less electricity being used. I will always make it clear which products were fired once only.

My Studio

My studio is is fitted out almost entirely with re-used items: The sink and cupboards were taken from an unwanted kitchen removed from a friend's house, the shelves were made from old planks removed from our house and the wheel was bought second hand, from a potter who moved overseas. I have a plethora of re-used containers, from old paint buckets for my glazes, to margarine and ice cream tubs for slips and other bits and bobs. My favorite tools are a butterknife bought at a second hand shop and a succession of old store and credit cards, used to smooth out the walls of my pots.

The Rest

I try to be strict with myself about what goes in the kiln: once fired the pots are not recyclable, so I have to be ruthless! 

My packaging is either reused (kind friends and colleagues know I collect used bubble-wrap) or recycled (boxes) and recyclable. Whenever possible, I take my electric bike to deliver packages to the post office.

On a personal level, I don't eat animal products for reasons of sustainability.

All of this is an ongoing and imperfect attempt at living and working in a way that does least harm to the earth. 

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