(Photo above by Paul A., beautiful crystalline pottery with backdrop of Colorado mountains).
As a consumer, you might ask yourself, Why support US handmade potters? and purchase higher priced US handmade goods vs buying much cheaper Asian or Latin American made pottery. After all, price is important, right?
On the surface this may appear to be self-serving, but there are good reasons why:
First: Health Issues - pottery made outside of the US does not have to meet FDA food grade standards, that means that foreign made pottery and ceramics can use lead based pigments in their glazes, which are toxic and can have serious health issues if you are eating or drinking from foreign made pottery.
Second: Tradition - There is a long tradition of pottery and ceramics making in various parts of the USA many since colonial times. Pottery making has often been passed down from generation to generation, improving the rich fabric of Arts and Crafts in America. Many of these potters do not make much money, and do what they do because they love what they are doing, it is the artist in them. Without our support this pottery making tradition would die in America.
Third: We love the work - If you peruse our site at Giftedpottery.com, (shameless plug here ;-) you will see literally hundreds of products all handmade, all richly made, all reasonably priced, all from US potters, all which we love. The work can be functional, artistic, crystalline, ceramic, porcelain, in an amazing array of glazes, all unique to the individual potter.
Fourth: Fair Pricing - Much of the foreign made pottery and ceramics that enter the US from other countries is very low priced and low quality. Ever wonder why? Aside from FDA standards mentioned above, What do you think they pay workers in countries like China, Central America, Mexico. I'll give you the answer, NOT A LOT! US made Arts and Crafts are higher priced because the Artist lives here, in the US and deserves a fair wage for his or her work. Isn't US made pottery and ceramics worth a little more?
Fifth: More Durable - Generally, with most of the pottery that we evaluate or buy ourselves or resell, the food grade products are not only handmade and meet FDA standards, but they are also Oven Safe, Microwave safe and dishwasher safe. They are designed to last for years, have great durability and the glaze has luster for years of use!
We hope you agree. Have an opinion, let us know. Have a review site, we'd love to talk to you.