One of the local museums i used to visit many years ago was the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery in Stoke-on-Trent. As a students i used to spend hours in their extensive ceramics collection. There were always certain areas i was drawn to such as the studio and Asian pottery but i always ended up looking at the Medieval pottery. The baluster jugs were my favourite and the way they were made. As everyday items they were made quickly with very simple design. I noted that in some cases the handles were not just attached and pulled as we do now but ‘riveted’ on. A hole was made in the jug and the clay of the handle forced through and spread out on the inside. This made the jug much stronger for daily use.

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What has renewed my interest has been a request from family members who are involved in the re-enactments of Tudor life at Kentwell. I was asked if i could make a colander and it got me interested in looking again at the pots and having a go at re-creating some forms to try to learn something from the making process. A little project for the summer i think.


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