Pottery Classes with Keeeps: Clay Taster

Pottery Classes with Keeeps: Clay Taster


So, you’re thinking about pottery classes but you’re not sure which one to take?

We are always happy to answer this question over the phone or in person at our store, but we have also put a series of blogs together about our pottery classes to help you make your decision. 

One thing is for sure, you are going to love your Keeeps pottery class, no matter which class or course you opt for.  

First in the series is our clay taster class and this is where we recommend you begin your pottery class journey with Keeeps. 

What is a clay taster pottery class?  

Our clay taster pottery class is a 3-hour class designed to give you a working knowledge of all the methods of making pottery. This includes the various methods of hand building, including slabbing, coiling and pinching as well as wheel throwing, where you’ll have a whirl on the wheel! 

The clay taster pottery class focuses predominantly on hand building techniques, with over two-thirds of the class being dedicated to your hand-built creations. 

Who are clay taster pottery classes for? 

Our clay taster pottery classes are designed for those who are completely new to making pottery or for anyone who has done a clay taster elsewhere or has a little experience of making pottery but wants a refresher.  

How many people will be on my clay taster pottery class? 

The pottery classes are in groups of up to 7 people so you’ll have plenty of time with the tutor and it will still be a relaxing experience as well as good fun. 

How much are the clay taster pottery classes? 

We offer peak and off-peak sessions for our clay taster pottery classes. There is no difference in content or format of the class, just in the timing and price! A peak clay taster pottery class is £80 per person, whilst an off-peak clay taster class is £70 per person. 

The price includes everything – tuition, clay, glazes, use of equipment and apron, and firing of your work. We also provide free tea and coffee! 

What will I learn on my clay taster pottery class? 

You will learn how to hand build pots. Potters use various methods of making pots by hand but the most popular of those methods are: 

  1. Coiling is where you roll the clay into thin sausages and wrap it round a solid clay base that you have cut and prepared. You’ll learn how to do this then transform into a smooth pot. 
  2. Slabbing is technique the includes rolling out slabs of clay and then cutting out pieces and attaching them together to create pots, cups, and urns. 
  3. Pinching is where you press a ball of clay with the thumb and shape it into a pot using just your trusty fingers and thumbs! 

Once you have made a few pieces using these methods, you will glaze (paint) your pottery using our studio glazes. 

Clay Taster Pottery Class

You will also get a go at wheel throwing, which will last around 30-40 minutes. You will learn how to centre the clay and will get used to how the clay feels under your hands, how it moves and behaves (or misbehaves!). 

What will I make at a clay taster pottery class? 

Whatever you want to make! But don’t worry, if you need a little guidance our expert tutor will be on hand with some inspiration as will your fellow classmates and shelves of pottery making magazines if you are really stuck for ideas.

So far, the majority of our clay taster customers have made trinket dishes and pots, phone stands, or a small sculpture of their choice in all different forms, shapes and sizes – we love seeing you come up with your own creations! 

You will glaze your hand-built pieces and we will fire them for you in the kiln to seal and finish them. Your finished pieces will be available to collect within 4-6 weeks so you have a lovely memento of the day and can display your artwork proudly at home! 

If you’re visiting Marlow and don’t live locally, don’t worry, we can post your items to you for a small fee of £5.95 for any sized box. 

What should I bring? 

Just bring yourself and a positive attitude ready to get potting! A couple of things of other things we recommend bringing and/or doing beforehand are: 

  • Water bottle – potting is thirsty work! 
  • Mask (optional) 
  • Clothes that you don’t mind getting dusty and dirty – making pottery can get messy! 
  • Flat shoes/trainers, no open toe shoes 
  • You will need to remove your rings so you may wish to leave these at home (or risk them getting caked in clay!) 
  • Hair tied back  
  • Sensible length nails if you are going on the pottery wheel 
  • Something to make fun or pretty textures in the clay (totally optional as you will be given plenty of tools to use!) 

I LOVED my clay taster…what pottery class should I do next? 

If you’re a pottery beginner and want to take your pottery journey to the next level, we’d recommend that you take a wheel taster class. Here, you’ll spend the whole 2.5-hour class on the wheel and will learn to throw forms and make objects which you don’t do on the clay taster.  

Pottery Wheel

If you found you were more interested in hand building, then you can either attend another clay taster, or we would recommend signing up for the Keeeps Club hand build-only open studio sessions, where you can continue your learning in a more informal environment.

Have a great time on your pottery class! 

We hope this blog helps you understand what the clay taster pottery class is all about, what you’ll learn and which pottery class you should take next once you’ve completed your clay taster and fallen in love with making pottery! 

If you have any other questions, feel free to pop them in the comments below, give us a call on 01268 397000 or an email at marlow@keeeps.co.uk. 

We’re so excited to see you on your next pottery class!

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