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Handmade

Ceramics is a craft dictated by time. In the world of ceramics, time reigns supreme, setting the rhythm for every creation. Each ceramic piece undergoes a metamorphosis, evolving from a formless lump of clay into a breathtaking masterpiece, much like a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly over the course of weeksAt Slou Ceramics, the creation process is a labor of love. Our pieces are meticulously crafted through a series of steps: modeling, drying, trimming, further drying, polishing, finishing, glazing, and the final touch—careful wrapping, individually done by Alba in her cozy studio space in Bonn.

The dedication to time and craftsmanship invested in each piece reflects the core philosophy and values of Slou Ceramics, infusing an intangible essence into every item. Explore our collection and experience the extra 'something' that our ceramics can bring to your life.

Balls of clay ready to be used at the wheel
Illustration of an hourglass meant to represent time

Deliberate Craftsmanship

The journey of a potter unfolds slowly, commencing long before the clay takes its final form. It begins with the careful preparation of clay, a process some artisans undertake by sourcing it from natural enclaves. These raw lumps of clay undergo meticulous wedging and weighing, one by one, as illustrated in the accompanying image. This ensures uniformity in size and eliminates potentially harmful air bubbles that could rupture during firing.

Once prepared, the clay can be transformed by hand or on the wheel, aided by water and specialized tools, into a diverse array of exquisite objects

Illustration of two vessels

Taking Shape

With meticulous care, each ceramic piece is crafted one by one. Once a piece is skillfully formed on the wheel or by hand, a crucial phase begins - the drying process. The time required for drying can vary depending on the season and the humidity levels of the region. Typically, within one to three days, the pieces attain the desired hardness, known as the 'leather-hard stage.' At this juncture, whether it's a vase or a bowl, the leather-hard piece undergoes meticulous trimming and polishing to achieve its final form. It's during this stage that the distinct features of the product emerge: a delicate rim, an elevated base, a unique pattern, or a particular shape. With the form perfected and while still in the leather-hard state, any additional elements such as handles or attachments are seamlessly integrated into the piece

Back of a freshly trimmed piece with artist mark at its base reading Slou Ceramics
Handgefertigte keramik stücke
Illustration of a hand covered in clay

Handfinished to Perfection

Each of our ceramic creations undergoes a meticulous two-step firing process to ensure they are entirely waterproof. Depending on the season, our meticulously polished leather-hard pieces receive additional drying time before they are ready for the bisque (or biscuit) firing. The initial firing, reaching temperatures of 900 - 950ºC, lasts approximately 24 hours. This bisque firing transforms the pieces, making them porous and rigid, perfect for absorbing glaze without compromising their shape.

Once bisqued, our pieces are adorned with a variety of glazing techniques and colors. Following this, they undergo another drying phase, lasting a day or two, before they are fired at a higher temperature (1200 - 1250°C) to achieve their final form. This concluding phase typically spans an additional two days, completing the journey from raw material to fully finished ceramic masterpiece.

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