After our talk with Meg at Insole Court I’ve decided that I want to make a tea set specifically for their reading room. I want to work closely with the needs of Insole court as I want to experience creating for other and being able to capture their needs. I think it’s an important aspect for me to learn before leaving university and I really enjoy working with others and making for others.
This is what insole court wants us to consider :-
- Public engagement
- Contemporary way of looking at heritage location (unlike National Trust)
- Variety of audiences – marketing audience is younger than usual 20-30
- Lively space-engage with envirnoment
- In house cafe
- Beautiful and usable
I would like to take a design approach to this project with out forgetting the context behind it, there isn’t much depth of information in regards to Insole Court about their architecture and design but i know it was heavily based and influenced by Cardiff Castle. Some artefacts at Cardiff Castle follow an Islamic style of organic shapes, i will need to research these further and maybe incorporate the shapes into my designs for them to have some context in relation to Insole Court.
Market research will be very important as well, i need to make contemporary pieces which will catch the eye of younger audiences, i will keep designs minimal, simple and maybe add character by varying the handles? I will visit popular coffee chains to see which shape they’ve decided to use to represent their company and find out why possibly. Drinking tea has also become quite fashionable recently with stores such as T2 taking over our high street who specialise in tea, it will be interesting to see what their concepts are.
In regards to design i want them so they can be functional but also function well. They could be used regularly at Insole Court which can result in breakage, this will make me consider which clay I should use (porcelain is the typical clay to use for tea wear but is earthenware more durable?) they need to be washable and be able to store nicely, this is why I’ve decided to do a stackable design for ease of storage as I don’t think they’ll have a specific kitchen area for this, the design also takes in consideration the consumer, it will be a tea set for one as I imagine people will come to read on their own instead of with a group of people. General ergonomics will need to be considered as well, ease of handling, weight and comfort of use.
I’ve had many ideas on which methods of making I will take, my initial though was to throw so I can develop my skills I learn at work experience but to have a consistent design I need to consider designs that they use in the making industry to make repetitively. I though about using CAD to design a form then 3D printing and transforming that into a slip cast but I don’t think my CAD skills are good enough for this, although they want us to take a contemporary approach I think it’s important to take some traditional techniques as well. Plaster turning would be a new method of making and would be a great process for me to learn, it will also allow me to make consistently.
IN terms of finish, the glaze needs to be dinner safe, simple and minimalist. These are some quick glaze samples I made using glaze from Bath Potters so I could familiarise my self with the kilns again.
1 Brush Coat 2 Brush Coat 3 Brush Coat Dip
I’m not sure what temperature the kiln reached, my cone was for 1186°C but the thermostat said it was 1216°C and it still hadn’t fallen. I checked again at 1260°C and I couldn’t see the cone so I switched the kiln off. I am Happy with how they turn out but I think they would work better if there were textures on the surfaces. I might do another test to experiment.