Valenspringtine 2020

   

Treat your sweet self or special sweetie! For the past five winters, I’ve given myself a month to delve into Valentine & springtime colors to escape the winter greys culminating in a Valenspringtine shop update. I always try to come up with a couple new forms in addition to new patterns on familiar favorites, and this year is no different.

For the first time in over 15 years, I made cup & saucer sets! They’re extra special in rarity & elaboration. I also made some fun, dessert-themed pillow forms —Petit Fours & Bonbons!— lovely for the wall or perched anywhere. They may be pint-sized, but they too are special and more elaborate than ever. And just like all great sweet things, hard to have only one! I’ll be posting almost 40 new pots, including Deluxe Cup & Saucer Sets, Deluxe Clover cups, Yunomi, & Wall/ tabletop Pillows. Pictured is just a sampling!

I posted earlier in the month that the sale would be Monday, but have moved it to Friday because of a change in my travel schedule, AND because shopping on Friday seems much more fun!

As I did with my last shop update, there will be a preview that begins in advance so you can peruse & plan. NOTE: During the Preview, the work will be labeled Sold Out till the sale goes live when everything will become available. (Refresh your device at noon.) There is lots of lovely work that is currently available too if you can’t wait!

Preview: Thurs, 1/30 @ Noon Est
Valenspringtine shop update: Fri, 1/31 @ Noon

Kieffer Ceramics Shop

Please note: Last day to purchase for Valentine’s Day delivery is no later than Noon, Mon, 2/10.

As always, thank you for supporting and buying
handmade and elegant from my studio!

Pottery Saved My Life

I posted this short yet poignant missive to Instagram & Facebook on June 14, 2019. Because it received so many comments (many of shared understanding and camaraderie, which you can click to read in the links above), and because social media posts basically disappear after a few days, it just recently occurred to me to post it here for easier reference and shareability.

“I thought today and finally, I’d explain how I came to clay. Two years ago Roberto Lugo emblazoned a t-shirt with this phrase, giving me the opportunity to share for the first time privately on FB then and publicly here now that this is literally true for me: Pottery Saved My Life.

For over three years (1988-91) in high school and the start of college, I was anorexic. I was hospitalized and nearly died. Twice. At almost 5’8”, I got down to what I considered to be the dream weight of 78 lbs. Anorexia nervosa seems a privileged illness (my fellow hospitalized inmates were actually a variety of different races and classes), but is really about perfectionism, depression, self-loathing, and learned body image distortion.

I couldn’t go away to college because of the illness. Too much risk. I enrolled at a local community college, which was only for ‘losers’ according to my public high school classmates. Fortunately, after my first year I took a summer hand-building course and found something that preoccupied my brain more than the addiction of perceived perfection. I’m well on the other side of too thin, but even after 28 years, think about my weight, food, and appearance multiple times a day, every day. If I hadn’t found clay (even after years of medication, therapy, and hospitalization), I’m not sure I would have gotten out of that black hole.

Pottery, as well as its tactility and physicality, consumed my mind and body, and do so to this day. I speak out frequently about back health and body ergonomics, on which I’m sure for me being anorexic took a toll, but I’ve never spoken out about my anorexia (in part because of my current weight) and the resulting ebb, flow, & desire for self-love, body acceptance, and psychological stability. I’m finally sharing this now in the hopes of helping others stuck in the nightmare of self-hate, whatever form that may take, and because we don’t know everyone’s story.

When I feel low, my mind still goes back to a rhetorical question I posed in my journal around age 18: Isn’t it better to be imperfectly happy than perfectly miserable?”

Studio Cycles Pictorial 2019

   

This is my ninth, year-end roundup of favorite and meaningful images featuring new ideas, important moments, and my pottery journeys. It’s always interesting for me to look back on the collection of images I’ve shared over the course of a year, and reflect on what continues to excite me and what was new in 2019 for me as a maker. Some of these were shared on Facebook and Instagram, but others you haven’t seen. My June post about how Pottery Saved My Life was indeed one of the most liked and commented on ever. If you missed it, you can read it here. As with past years, this is not an order, it’s a cycle.

As always, thank you for your continued support of my work and studio.
A happy, healthy New Year to you and yours!

New Store!


I have a new online store!

I’ve been selling in Etsy’s online marketplace for over 10 years, and it served me very well. Unfortunately they’ve made a lot of changes lately that negatively impact sellers, so I’ve opened up a new personal online store which is very exciting!

If you had my old shop bookmarked, please update and replace with: KiefferCeramics.shop (indeed the actual url). As always, I will aim to keep it stocked year-round, post about small adds on social media (IG & FB), and share my bigger updates in my newsletter.

Below is just a small selection of the over 30 new pots I posted last week. Several new stamps debuted including a bumble bee, new butterflies, and several new patterns!

There may be some kinks as I figure out the new store, but it has nice customer perks for you, like the ability to create an account for quicker check out, more payment options, and a cool image rollover to view detail! I’ve also added FAQ & Shop Policies pages, which were limited and hard to find on Etsy.

NEW Kieffer Ceramics Store

I couldn’t do any of what I do
without you & your support,
so thank you for your support & patronage!

Spring Studio Sale


Handmade for springtime! My Annual Spring Studio Sale is next weekend! I hope my fellow New Englanders can swing by to check out my studio and shop gallery-quality pots, plus “aesthetic” and “minorly flawed” seconds*. Everything that’s listed in my online shop is available, plus much more. Early birds claim the best finds!

Sat, May 18th 10 – 5 &
Sun, May 19th 11 – 4
Baldwinville, MA

Purchasing:
Cash preferred; checks and credit cards accepted.

Directions:
Baldwinville is in Templeton, just west of Gardner and about 3 miles from Exit 21 off Route 2 near Route 68. We’re centrally located about an hour or less each from Framingham, Worcester, Northampton, and Shelburne Falls, MA as well as, Keene, NH and Brattleboro, VT. We do recommend using GoogleMaps or GPS for the best directions from your particular location.

Parking:
We live on a busy road, and there is no parking in front of our house. Parking is best in our driveway or on the opposite side of the street. Please be considerate of our neighbors.

Accessibility:
My studio is in a walkout basement, so entering the sale requires using stairs either outside or inside.

Drop me an email if you have any questions: KiefferCeramics@gmail.com.

As always, thank you for supporting and caring
about independent business and handmade design.

*I don’t recommend gifting seconds, but they are perfect price-savers for you to take home and treasure.