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Stories

Ceramic; pieces that come to life in the kiln

Ceramic is produced from clay and other minerals from the earth. The term itself originates from the Greek word Keramos, meaning ‘burnt earth’. This is why you will find organic references throughout all of our ceramics. It is a humble nod to the origin of the material. We don’t want our products to look overly processed. We celebrate imperfection, and we embrace the raw nature of such a unique material.

Natural influences are central to our ceramic designs. The subtle texture of a stone or the deep grains in the surface of wood. Intricate patterns found in botanical forms often spark a new idea or interesting texture. We’re constantly experimenting. Sharing ideas and inspirations to our network of ceramicists to see what can be achieved. The artisans we work with are experts in their field, and they know exactly what can be tried and what might need adapting.

Our ceramic is sourced in Alcobaca in central Portugal. Clay materials are abundant in Portuguese soil, and the area is known across the world for its specialist expertise in the handmade production of decorative ceramics. Which material we work with depends on the design intent. Porcelain is soft to the touch. It is a noble material that is both beautiful and incredibly durable. Earthenware is fired at a lower temperature in the kiln, which means it can be produced in numerous shapes and decorations. It gives us vast possibilities with glaze – colour, texture and pattern.

The finishing of ceramic is complex and magical. Decorative glazes and rough textured surfaces are the result of unique reactions in the kiln during firing. Factors like heat, space and duration all play a role in how the finished piece looks. How the bubbles pop or the colour fades from one tone to another. These distinctive features hold infinite variation, which can never be replicated between any two pieces.

Consider Elara or Terra. They are finished at a higher temperature than other products. This causes the material to rapidly heat and, like little bubbles bursting, form a grainy texture that up close looks like the face of the moon. Reactive glazes also create endless characteristics. Take the delicate crackle of Camellia, or the layered black brush strokes of Pierre. The glaze looks plain when first applied, and the finished result can only be admired after firing. Distribution of pattern and colour fusions come to life behind the locked door of the kiln.

Our ceramic collection does more than cast light in a room. Each piece has a rare identity - an object of beauty, full of charm, quirk and craftsmanship.

All products in our Ceramic Collection are available to shop. Read more about our design process at the Heathfield Studio.

View all products in our Ceramic collection