It's probably not unusual for a florist to have a thing for pots and vases and vessels. My collection will never be complete.
I'm always on the look out for interesting containers to arrange my flowers in.
I buy a lot of my event vessels from my wholesalers and local nurseries, to tie in with clients requirements and current trends. But I like to pick up the more unusual ones from antique shops, markets, charity shops etc... the usual suspects for all of those old, perhaps even chintzy treasures.
Glassware is often the easiest find, sold in pairs or sets, which is ideal.
Rare are those vintage ceramics and handmade pottery.
When my husband and I visited Kyoto Japan back in 2014 we spent a while in Kyoto and I happened across Kyo-Yaki, or 'Kyoto ware'. Traditional Japanese handmade ceramics.
It's the stuff of my dreams.
The origins of this hub for ceramics dates back in the early 1600's. The Tea ceremony spawned an interest in tea containers and the production of them. An influx of artisans from surrounding areas fled to Kyoto to create their wares and over time developed their use of materials and methods.
Some of the earliest tea sets were thought to be fired by Raku. This process, a pretty aggressive approach to firing, whereby the piece is removed from the kiln whilst it glows with heat, and exposed to cooler temperatures and smothered in combustable materials in order to starve it of oxygen, creating a variety of colour, texture and unique results every time.
It sounds incredibly exciting, but also, a little more advanced for my very ammeter experience.
I love the over glazed designs, that are appear to drip with colour. But also the mottled and cracked texture of the glazes. The raw and imperfect finishes to a handmade item is what makes it an individual piece. It is the charm.
Whilst in Kyoto I spent a whole afternoon (without hubby) wandering in and out of these troves of treasure, swooning hard!
Needless to say, I came home with a few treasures. Only disappointed that I didn't have more space in my suitcase.
A couple of years ago I decided to give pottery a go for myself and see if I could create anything near reputable. I had a ball, and even felt pretty confident behind the wheel. However... it's going to take a LOT more practice before I manage to produce anything I'd be happy to share in my work.
The dream is to one day have a collection of handmade ceramic vessels to deck out a room of wedding centrepieces.