Pottery 101: What makes handmade ceramics special?
When founders Nahla and Nour created Ellie they were embracing a calling to get back in touch with nature, to encourage themselves more than anyone to work with their own hands, to create, and inspire.
Over the past 9 years, they’ve fallen in love over and over again with pottery making and the pursuit to show people the magic of buying a piece for your home that is locally handmade! You see, we at Ellie believe that handmade pottery enriches everyday objects with purpose and beauty; it gives them a soul. When an object is made by hand, you won’t want to throw it away. You will care for it and cherish it.
Pottery will always remain a core component of what Ellie is all about. It’s part of our every day, the craft that started our journey, and with it came our endless love and appreciation for it.
Here are just a few of the many reasons why we’re head over heels in love with this material...
1. A More Conscious Choice
The re-emergence of this ancient art is a natural response to our single-use, throw-away culture. People have grown tired of buying mass-produced products—objects which are not unique, meaningful or memorable. Products that they have no personal connection to, so they can simply be thrown out with next month’s passing fad. Nowadays, more and more people are rejecting factory-produced homeware and rediscovering the soulful nature of hand-crafted goods.
2. Prosperous Nature
The prosperous nature of clay allows both moisture and heat to circulate through the food, resulting in slow-cooked, yet aromatic food. It also retains the nutrition of the food, which is generally lost in other types of cooking utensils.
3. Alkaline Nature
Clay is alkaline in nature and it interacts with the acidity in the food, thereby neutralizing the pH balance, and eventually making the food healthier and a lot tastier. It is believed that clay pots provide required minerals including calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, and sulfur to food, which benefits our health greatly.
Clay is a living material; it has energy, texture, and temperature. The components that form the ceramics are believed to be non-toxic, making them safe for the human body as it does not release any harmful toxins when exposed to higher temperatures.
In addition, the health benefits of cooking in a clay pot are vast. Not only does it provide the needed minerals to food, but it also allows the food cooked in it to have lower fat than food prepared with other cooking utensils. This is because oil is not necessary for cooking clay pots.
Ceramic is manufactured with natural materials; it comes from the earth. And due to its natural origin, it is totally recyclable.
Ceramics are not burnt or melted and, therefore, they do not emit toxic gases to the environment or your health.
Its manufacturing process is efficient, reduces the consumption of energy, water, and raw materials, reuses and upgrades wastes, cogenerates electricity, etc.
Its high resistance and durability make it a sustainable material and the excessive consumption of resources is avoided.
6. Built To Last
Ceramic pieces are one of the most durable types of cookware available. The reason behind that is that ceramics can handle extremes of heat and cold very well. Casseroles and other favorite cooking dishes are often used for freezer-to-oven due to their resistance to extreme temperature changes.
7. Endless Styling Options
Ceramics offer an outstanding visual representation for your guests to enjoy. They will elevate your dining table greatly and offer a great aesthetic.
Ceramics can be styled with all types of decor as it comes in a wide variety of colors, so you can easily complement all color schemes and styles of your place.
Ceramic cookware features a non-toxic glaze with a high-gloss, scratch-proof, and stain-resistant finish that will look like-new for years to come. You can serve roasted chicken straight from a ceramic Dutch oven, breakfast potatoes straight from a ceramic skillet, and mouthwatering cake straight from a ceramic baking dish, all without worrying about whether your food will look appetizing. No more worrying about transferring the food from the cookware to other stylish dishes.
8. Every Product Is Unique
Pottery is an art of a thousand variables. Along the journey from clay to table, there are dozens of factors that create subtle variations specific to each item. Like humans, art or music these differences are the things which you fall in love with and treasure. No two ceramic pieces are the same, every product is unique.
When you pick up a handmade ceramic piece for the first time, you immediately notice a depth about it. The sturdiness in your hand, the subtle variations in the glaze, and the textures which connect with your fingers all go far beyond the generic products we’ve been conditioned to expect. This heightened sense of physicality flows into the meals you share and your connection between table and planet.
Clay is one of the few natural resources which is being created faster than humans are using it, making it one of the most sustainable materials on the planet. If earth as a collective can continue to search for and incorporate these types of materials into our business practices, we can establish a sustainable economy and world which will be here for generations to come. Handmade ceramic products are truly from the earth, for the earth.