All of our terracotta pieces are crafted by hand in Italy. The methods, skills and artistry are the same as have been used for hundreds of years. Our craftsmen work through a five-year apprenticeship to acquire the traditional skills required. The whole process takes up to six weeks of continuous care and attention, resulting in beautiful pieces that you will admire and appreciate every time you look at them.
To begin, we blend pure Tuscan clays to achieve the perfect pale colour and classic weathered texture using natural elements. The clay is hand pressed into gesso moulds where the pot will remain until it can stand without support. This initial process alone takes up to two weeks.
We then remove the mould and allow the pot to slowly air dry for a further four weeks, using residual heat from the kilns that is funnelled into the drying room. Drying is arguably the most critical stage of the process. During this period the pots are turned regularly to ensure even drying. This is a delicate process and can take at least three people to rotate a large pot every day. As the pots dry the colour will begin to take on a pink hue.
When completely dry, the items are moved into the kiln, where temperatures reach 1100°C. Firing time is about 36 hours.
Once cooled, each piece is carefully wrapped, packed and crated for transportation.
Finally, they will be delivered in person to you by a member of the Italian Terrace team.
- Grayson Perry