Care for your Ceramics

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How can I best take care of my ceramics when I first receive it?

Depending on whether you purchased a stoneware or porcelain piece, care for your ceramic can differ. Stoneware is a very absorbent material even when fired; this is because when fired to vitrification, moisture and organic matter burn out, leaving minute pores within the body, which can absorb and retain moisture. In contrast, porcelain has almost no water absorption properties because its raw material consists primarily of feldspar, silica, kaolin, and petunse.

Most of my pots are stoneware, made with Japanese techniques such as mishima, hakeme, and kohiki in which I use a white slip over iron-rich clay and a transparent feldspathic glaze over top. These pots change over time naturally with use; slight changes in color or staining are reflective of your use and the lifecycle of the pot, and do not result in issues of food safety. 

Stoneware: When you first receive your pottery, it can still absorb moisture despite the glaze. I recommend soaking it in water (cold or lukewarm) for at least 10 minutes, preferably overnight, before you begin using it to prevent stains. After that, you can prevent stains by dipping the pot in water before using it.

Porcelain: Since porcelain is not porous, it does not absorb water, and as such is more resistant to staining. It is also a harder material and typically more durable. Nevertheless, basic principles of care apply to porcelain as well as to stoneware.

Are your ceramics dishwasher/microwave safe?

My ceramics can be used with a dishwasher, but they will last longer if you hand wash. I use my own pots periodically in a dishwasher to test them with no problem; however, stoneware pieces are more likely to stain overtime due to the heat cycle of the dishwasher which can dry out the ceramic. I recommend gentle hand washing for my stoneware ceramics; porcelain is less likely to be impacted over time by dishwasher use. 

My ceramics can be used in a microwave at typical settings; however, repeated use over time can weaken the ware and exacerbate minute cracks invisible to the eye if such issues exist. Moreover, heating up sauces or oil-based items on handmade ceramics within a microwave can accelerate staining of ceramic ware. I recommend sparing use in a microwave to ensure longevity. 

Please do not use our ceramics over open flame, ovens, or toasters. They are not designed to withstand such drastic changes in temperature.  

Are your glazes foodsafe?

I work with very simple glazes (typically what you would call a “transparent” and a “celadon” in the U.S.), since my philosophy in my work is that depth and subtlety comes from the layering of slip and the fusion of different materials through reduction firing. My glazes do not contain lead or heavy metals. 

Will your ceramics scratch surfaces/leak?

I polish the bottom of every piece that I fire with sandpaper to ensure they don’t scratch surfaces, whether they be wood, concrete, or stone. I currently rely on commercial suppliers of clay which tend to have a fine particle size and less prone to leakage. I test my wares for leakage as well; please contact me if you have any problems (you hopefully won't have to!)

What should I do for returns & exchanges and defective products?

I package my pots carefully using 100% curbside recyclable products (kraft-paper and cardboard) as well as biodegradable peanuts as needed. There should be no breakage during transit; if you experience an issue please get in touch via the form on the contact page! I'll do my best to accommodate your needs.

For items with no breakage, returns will be accepted at the buyer's cost. The original shipping cost will not be refunded.

My ceramics chipped/broke. What should I do?

This is perfectly normal—I myself have chipped or broken a beloved piece from time to time. Ceramics are meant to be used and some degree of breakage is inevitable. If it’s a particularly dear piece for you, I can repair it for a fee, either using a special glue/ground ceramic to fill gaps, or with lacquer (essentially kintsugi without the gold). Bear in mind that the second option (lacquer) can be a time-consuming and a delicate process with a month+ turnaround. Please contact me to discuss!