Check out the YouTube video below, which takes you through the various manufacturing processes involved in making Old Tupton Ware handmade pottery. The video details the seven main steps in creating Old Tupton Ware, the first of which being casting, which involves filling a handmade mould with liquid clay known as slip. Once partially dry, the piece is then removed from the mould and left to dry overnight.
After drying is complete, the second process is initiated; turning. It is at this point the potter turns the clay, removing seams and belmished in the plaster as they go.
Following this process is sponging, which involves using a sponge on the piece to ensure a smooth finish.
Once the piece has its shape, smooth finish and is blemish free, it is ready to decorate. It is now we move on to tracing, the fourth process. This part involves a skilled designer drawing the unique Old Tupton Ware pattern onto the piece by hand using drawings. This manual process ensures no two pieces are ever exactly the same.
After this, the next process to be performed is tube lining. This process requires the tube liner to go over the traced pattern using soft clay pumped through a bag, in much the same way as you would ice a cake.
This is then left to dry overnight before the sixth process can be performed; painting. The paint is watery and is applied to the gaps in the tube lined pattern using brushes, pens and artists’ fingers, to blend the colours and create the beautiful layers of paint that make Old Tupton Ware so distinctive.
When all of these steps are complete and the artist is happy with the final design, the seventh and final stage is performed; firing and glazing. Each piece is ‘fired’ at over 1000 degrees celsius in a kiln for 8 hours, before being briefly dipped in a special clear glaze. Following this, they are left to dry overnight before a final 8 hour firing to complete the distinctive Tupton Ware coloured finish.
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