'My Morning Cup of....' with Skratch Ceramics
Posted on 22 June 2017
Kate Russell is the maker behind Skratch Ceramics, working out of her beautiful garden studio in South Wales. We have fallen in love with Kate's pinch pots; each work is hand built using white stoneware before being decorated with sgraffito resulting a highly tactile and unique bowl that nestles perfectly in the palm of your hand. You can find more of Kate's work here
What drink do you have to start the day?
A big mug of Yorkshire Gold Tea, or two... The first one is usually abandoned, barely touched, in the mad dash of the school run. Then I get back to the house a make a second before heading out to the studio.
What are your studio essentials?
Clay, my hands, some colourful underglazes, a selection of pointy tools for sgraffito and my kiln, where the magic happens!
What do you listen to whilst you work?
I’ve become a bit of a podcast addict lately. I especially love listening to interviews with other makers. The Potters Cast by P. D. Blais is a bit of a favourite and I'm hoping there will be more episodes of Makers Broadcast by Hatchet+Bear soon.
What has been the most influential advice someone has given you?
I’m not sure where I first heard it, but something along the lines of “if you wait until you’re ready, you’ll never begin”. In the past I’ve tended to lack self-confidence and I’m the first to pick faults in my work, but this time around I decided that I just had to dive in. Life is too short - if you have the opportunity to do something you love for a living, then you have to give it a go. I’m really lucky that I have the support of my husband to make it possible. I think Instagram was also instrumental in getting me started. I saw that there were so many people managing to turn their creativity into businesses. Plus posting a photo and instantly having positive feedback from people around the world is a fantastic confidence boost.
What was the last thing you saw that inspired you?
Over the past few weeks it’s been lovely watching our garden spring into life. I can watch birds, squirrels and rabbits from the studio window and there’s a great range of plants too. I keep thinking I must come up with a range based on the nature in our garden. Recently, the beautiful structure of the plant Solomon’s Purse in particular has caught my eye as a potential future design.
What are you looking forward to in 2017?
In the summer we’re having a bit of a road-trip family holiday in Northern Spain. Flying into Madrid and out of Bilbao, travelling between various historic towns along the way and then a spell on the coast. We haven’t explored that part of the country before. I’m looking forward to taking some time to sketch new designs and gain fresh inspiration from the local folk art and fishing villages.