SHOP:: Kirkwood Clay Pottery
OWNER'S:: Scott and Tiffany
LOCATION:: Greensboro, North Carolina
Where is your studio located?
We live and work in the Kirkwood Neighborhood of Greensboro, North Carolina, and our home studio is tucked away in one of the oldest neighborhoods in town. Greensboro has been the absolutely perfect place to build our creative small business. We are a short bike ride away from the old Greensboro Farmer’s Market, minutes away from our historic downtown area that is full of places of inspiration - from the great museums and historic theaters to local breweries and even a new hackerspace, Greensboro is a place that is constantly reinventing itself.
How did you get started in your craft?
The path to our small business has been full of surprise and serendipity. A long, long time ago on a long, Long Island, Scott took pottery lessons while in high school. This small experience planted a seed that would long lay dormant until ten years later. We met as middle school teachers in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. When Tiffany went back to grad school, we moved to North Carolina, fell in love with Greensboro, and settled in. As a holiday tradition, we invest each year in something we can both enjoy. While we have gotten a lot of use out of our GPS and our iPads, the best thing we ever did was invest in pottery lessons at our local cultural arts center.
We fell in love with pottery immediately. While our class was only once a week, we talked the other instructors into letting us attend their classes as well. We found ourselves in the studio every night after work and all weekend! Our lives revolved around open studio hours. We even moved downtown across the street from the arts center to cut down on our commute!
What are the top 3 tools most important in your craft?
Interestingly enough, we’d have to say that a strip of leather chamois would have the most important tool in the studio. After each piece is made on the potter’s wheel, we use a little leather chamois to soften the rim and hard lines of each piece. This helps to make our work really comfortable to use. We also end up raiding our kitchen for tools! We use a vegetable peeler to make our popular faceted mugs and all of our wooden spoons have ended up in the pottery studio. When we are making a large vase and can no longer fit our hands through the neck to finish shaping the pieces, nothing works like a good old wooden sauce spoon :)
What's a typical day like in the studio?
A typical day in the studio begins with coffee and lots of music as we spend most mornings unloading and reloading the kiln. We are addicted to Spotify! Then we snap some pics of any new pieces that have come our of the kiln before packing and shipping the day’s orders. Then we usually break for lunch around noon and go on an afternoon walk around the neighborhood. We are so lucky that we both get to work from home! After lunch, we usually spend some time responding to customers, making some new listings, and scheduling a few social media posts until dinner time. New things never really get created around here in the daytime. For us, the night time is the right time to sit down at the wheel and get making :)
What are the greatest rewards of creating something handmade?
We get such a sense of pride from creating something handmade and building our little business. It’s awesome knowing that our work is in the hands and homes of so many people around the world!