Sunday, 26 July 2015

Some People say Blogging is Dead! Mine's still Breathing at the Moment.

I've always been interested in Sales & Marketing
which is one of the reasons
I Love doing what I do.
I'm a Potter
But if your going to survive in this world
You have to get off your arse and sell what you make.
That's the bit I love
almost as much as the making.

 These are our new Tags for pots or Bags.

When I posted about them on Twitter.

a marketing lady in New York Favorited my Tweet
I was interested about this and followed up the link
I've attached it here
5 Digital Trends 
One of which is that the standard Blog is dead.

Make of it what you will
I was intrigued by the thought that people will have chips
put in their skin
so My computer would know when they walk into my store!
and I could then use this info to sell them stuff.
Luckily for me I operate on a much smaller scale and I can see them walk into 
my pottery and say Hi
and have a
with them and then I might just sell them a pot.
Moral of the story
"Keep it Small"!

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Two New Pottery Videos and Ceramic Shows update.

Here is a link to our New Video
Shot and edited by Marion's Son Nathan

I've put the picture here of the jug featured in the video
when it came out of the glaze firing a week later.

While Nathan was here we also updated  our previous video
to make one for the lessons 
in the Pottery school.

Here is the link to the school video

The old workshop  it all started in 7 Years ago, is having an overhaul 
at the moment.

Not everything is going to plan
These 4 large pancheons made for a new customer
cracked in the biscuit firing.
It's a combination of me drying them out to fast
and the bottom of the kiln heating up to quickly
with deadly consequences.
Where the hell was He when I needed him?
After many years of me resisting the purchase of a rubber stamp
to print out own bags as suggested by Marion over two years ago
I finally gave in and let Marion order one.
I hold My hands up and bow to the superior Power
that is Marion Lewis
I love the new bags
and they have already proved a big hit with our customers.

The Day before we set off to the Earth & Fire show at Rufford Abbey
in Nottinghamshire, we had no idea what to do as a stall design.

We had been working so hard that I just hadn't had time to think about it!
So we went off to a coffee shop
it's much easier to think about stuff when you are away
from the workshop sometimes.
we drew up a sketch on a napkin
and designed a stall using stuff we had found in a skip earlier in the week>

This was the result
But in fact it didn't work to well, the top tray was too far back for customers
to reach the pots easily
and it proved to be our worst Rufford ever!
Back to the drawing board for the next show.

We at least gave our new tent an airing.

It's a stunning setting for camping and we do love the show.

We attended the Richard Godfrey Exhibition
in the art center.
It Proved to be a very emotional event, and made us all think about
our own mortality. 

The following day the event continued with the 
Potters Games.
always a great way to show the fun side of pottery.

and demonstrations
I especially liked watching Niek Hoogland's
he decorated this dish

and later that day when we were both clearing away
he wrote this on the back
and presented it to me.
Very Special.
in fact I was so over whelmed I had to have a nap in the shade.
Our banner proved to be a popular meeting place
for potters.
Our sales at Rufford were not great, but we both came away feeling
that we had enjoyed ourselves, learnt a lot
and were both very excited about what the future may still hold.
so in that respect it was a good event.

We were only back three days and then we were off again
 this time to Art in Clay
our first time as a stall holder.
and one of the boxes ticked on my Bucket list.
By the time we were set up we had behind us the moon rising

and in front of us the Sun setting.
New show = New Stand
We had learnt the lessons of our Rufford stall
This stall was all about letting people know who we are.

As a Kid I used to live in Stevenage which is only about
12 miles from Hatfield
and My old art teacher from The Nobel School
Mrs Thomas came to the show and wondered if she might see me.
I used to sell pots at pottery parties
when I was about 16 to fund my school and college pottery
Mrs Thomas still uses a pot she brought from me in 1978.

The one thing about being Me is that I do seem to be able
to say things to people and get away with it!
I'm told people are surprised I'm still alive with some of the 
stuff I've said to people, but my cheeky approach 
certainly paid off with my Cider beakers, 
I sold a lot to ladies that were looking at Them when I said
Up here there Gin Beakers!

We had a great show at Art In Clay,
My Demonstration on the Friday morning was well attended
and got rave reviews from those who attended
and it was very well attended.
To cap a great weekend Marion brought me this great book
from the Ceramic review book shop stall.

One Happy Potter
well Two Acually.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Mixing Business with Pleasure

It's all systems go at the Pottery at the moment,
but it seems like it's been that way since January,
where have these past 5 months gone.

I love this picture
it's a screen grab from our latest workshop video
that will be live soon
so watch this space.

We are working so hard that we really need our day off
to unwind and relax a bit.
Last week we went to Bridport
to look at all the Antique shops,
This pic was taken whilst enjoying a piece of cake
and some builders tea from the red brick cafe.

We also popped down to West Bay
for a stroll along the sea front.

we came across our pots in the Old Custom house.

We have also been working on some exclusives 
for the National Trust
I'm liking this new Blue/ Grey colour.

Sales in our showroom are continuing to grow
with more visitors seeking us out
which is a really nice feeling, that people are
making a visit to our workshop a part of their holiday experience
and we hope we always make them feel like it was
worth it.
The Article in Country Homes & Interiors Magazine
really has been a great boost to us this year,
with visitors coming from as far away as Kent.

I was reading the latest copy of Ceramic Review this week
and spotted a small feature on ourselves. 
We ordered our third tonne of clay so far this year
last year we used 5 tonnes
looks like it's going to be six this year.

The new kiln is still firing a bit to high
but people seem to be loving the toasted look.

Me I'm not so sure!

I fired this very large jug in our old kiln just to make sure
it came out how I wanted it.

I've spoken to the kiln makers and I think I can sort it out.

This was a very dramatic sky over the workshop
the other day.
So over the next few weeks we shall be at Earth & Fire 2015
at Rufford Abbey Nottinghamshire
followed by
Art in Clay Hatfield House

We hope to see you there

Thursday, 14 May 2015

So whats been going on @ Barrington Pottery

It's been a while since I last posted a Blog
almost a Month.
We have been very busy, and I'm not sure where the time has gone?
But since I last posted a number of things have happened.
So here is a brief update on where we are at!
In the showroom I built a new table from old scaffolding planks.
We have a friend in the Village that owns a scaffolding company
so I asked him one Sunday night in the pub
" what do you do with old planks you no longer use?"
He said he would get some of his lads to drop some down to us
when they were next in the area.
All I did was put it together and sand it down afterwards
Just Perfect!

We have also made some more pots for a medieval style film being made by
20th Century Fox.
Being filmed in Cardiff at the moment.

The new Large kiln means I can fire lots more Pancheons
at any one time.

Here is one of the new finished pancheons out of the new kiln.
and I've re subscribed to Ceramic Review!

I still am amazed as to just how many pots I can fit into the 
New Kiln.
It's still firing hot at the bottom but I'll sort that.

I've been extremely busy making pots 
this is a Sunrise when I turned up at the workshop one morning.

I'm sure I will soon work out the best way to get 
the most out of the kiln.
It's taking much longer to load a glaze firing
but it's also taking an extra half a day to cool down.

We are now on St Mary's Church Key rota
and we have had our first two weeks.
I love opening it up in the morning and closing it up at night
it just gives you a bit of time to appreciate
it on your own. and capture some of the sunlight.

These Cereal bowls were fired at the very bottom of the kiln
you can see they are much darker.
But all the dark ones sold first!

A Bit higher up the kiln our Honey glaze looks great

and this ramakin is what the bowls above should have looked like.
Here  we have some new Pancheons 
on my new showroom table.
We  have supplies two new shops
one in west bay called the Lobster in the Cupboard
and one in Lyme Regis called Found ( Ryder & Hicks ).
and then we set off to Scotland for Doug & Hannah's Wedding
we went Via the Lake district 
Strange to see Snow on the hills in May! 
But it all went brilliant!
One of the few shots that was taken of us both.
Now we are making pots for 
The River Cottage Spring Fair.
See you soon.