Who is Woodside Ceramics?
When did you start your handmade journey and why?
The Woodside Ceramics journey started with us looking for a hobby that we would love together and to provide a creative outlet.
Naturally after the grand total of three lessons we went all in on a pottery wheel, kiln, slab roller and covered a third of our garage from floor to ceiling in glazes, glaze ingredients, clay, tools, sponges, shelving etc. If you can use it to shape clay (and even probably shouldn’t) it’s now in our shed.
With the addiction fully fueled (luckily the hobby stuck!) over time our quirky, small, chunky-bottomed creations slowly got nudged to the back shelves (and tables and cupboards) as we upgraded them with balanced, even, character filled pieces. With consistent compliments from friends, and not just our Mums, we took the leap to start sharing our pieces at local markets and branched out into ceramic jewellery as well.
What has helped shape Woodside ?
Sept 2018 Purple Vase
Our first pieces were made taking ceramic lessons together. Those early days were full of excitement and discovery. From trying to perfect forms and then being introduced to the next element in the design phase like glaze making and the marketing side with trying to photograph the best angles of our pieces. It felt like when we did something well we were bombarded with the next thing we had to grapple with. It didn’t take very long for us to realise that we wanted to put all our efforts into growing our skills and making a business so we can share our passion.
Jan 2019 Amalfi collection glazes
Part of the expression of ceramics is not only in the forms but the glazes we use. These processes take time and development. We make tests to see if we like the glazes, then make sure it fits with our clay choices and whether it fits the aesthetic we are looking for. We fell in love with the Amalfi range of glazes which were some of our firsts. It transported us over the hinterland to the oceans and cool breezes. We continue to use them today and they are a staple in our collections. Naming a collection is also one of our favourite parts of the reveal process (and has been a big help during stocktake!)
Feb 2019 Stud Drop Earrings
These stud drop earrings were one of the first pairs we expanded our creativity to combine multiple earring pendants and glazes into the one piece. They are also the first pair that were stocked and sold in a local, small bespoke linen clothing store. Seeing these earrings styled with such elegant, luxurious fabrics was the catalyst for us to keep creating ceramic earrings. This and developing relationships with the surprising number of creatives a small country town harbours has been a great source of inspiration, support and fuel for the creative fires.
Our love of handmade ceramics is with the potential for surprise at every stage of the creative process, with opportunities to create unique forms and see a piece come together with beautiful (and sometimes unexpected) colour combinations and patterns. It provides an ongoing patience lesson for our Type A personalities and a reminder to find the beauty in the perfectly imperfect. No two pieces are exactly the same and have their own beautiful character. We love that we get to share handmade items that have been crafted with soul and intent.
It's easy enough to grab any old cup or bowl from the cupboard but imagine cradling the warmth of a handmade piece of pottery. Same great coffee or meal, but with the added bonus of the smooth texture of polished stoneware. You'd see the ribbed throw lines on the inside of the cup shaped by hand, marking the cup as uniquely yours.
Our stoneware clay is a natural clay without vinyl, plasticisers and other nasties.
Our design process allows us to provide a more environmentally friendly option for special homeware and jewellery pieces. We aim to lower our carbon footprint through the use of our electric kiln powered by solar to help offset part of the firing cycle, we use tank water in our studio and our homeware clay trimmings are recycled into our jewellery pieces.
Consumers can know who made your jewellery and homewares and how they were made. We can both have a moment of happy, being super chuffed you prefer using your Woodside Ceramics pieces.
What's next for Woodside Ceramics?
Expanding on the earring options to incorporate sterling silver and have more creative control over the earring fixtures and designs – to know the origin and environmental footprint of the whole piece of jewellery is very exciting for us.