Stallholder Profile for Pump House Pottery
Your name: Leona Stevens
Your business name and facebook/website name and link: Pump House Pottery
The suburb/town you live in now: Sunshine Coast. One of the most beautiful places in the world.
What is it that you make and what skills do you use?: I am a potter. I make functional pieces such as bowls plates etc on a pottery wheel. I also make decorative pieces such as bud vases and pin cushions. I use my muscles, haha. Pottery, especially wheel thrown pottery is very labour intensive. When entering a 2.5kg slab of clay on a spinning wheel you have to get your whole body behind it. I also need to plan and design a lot beforehand so I know what I am going to make before I sit down at the wheel. I also need to be good at chemistry as making glazes needs a lot of knowledge and failures.
What inspired you to start your business?: I love working with clay. I can get lost in the making process and before I know it several hours have passed. I also love ceramics in general. I think everyone can relate to the feeling of picking up a lovely finished piece of pottery. Something about pottery just makes you want to pick it up and feel it. I couldn't think of a better business to be involved in so I wanted to start producing work that people would love as much as me.
How long have you been creating?: I have been creating for roughly 20 years on and off.
Is it a full time/part time hobby or business?: I would love it to be my full time business and that is my goal, but at the moment it is just my hobby/part time business.
Where do you sell your creations?: I have an Etsy store and do sell through facebook. And of course the Handmade Expo.
What makes you so special or different?: I think what makes my work unique is the fact that I produce most of my work on a wheel and not slabs. I was technically trained so always produce fine work. I love a trimmed foot on pottery, it makes it a little more special.
What is the most rewarding part of what you do?: Pottery can be a love/hate relationship. At anytime in the process my work can fail; a crack in the piece while drying, a crack from the first firing or second or a glaze not turning out as i expected. But the most rewarding part is after all the time and effort I put into a piece and when I open the kiln for the last time a piece comes out that looks absolutely stunning and not quite what I expected.
What is your favourite product to make? I love making all the pieces I currently produce. If I had to pick one I think it might be my cake stand / chip and dip bowl. I love the versatility of it and how it can be used for two totally different purposes and the beautiful crisp white of the clay.
Do you teach classes or workshops? I don't teach classes but I am always happy to share my knowledge with anyone who listens. I am always trying to recruit more potters haha.