Cotehele Craft Fair - Christmas

October 10 – Cotehele Craft Fair Poster

Cotehele Craft Fair 5 – 6th November 2016

Catching up with news from the weekend:

My scribble bowls are on the promotional poster for the National Trust Cotehele Craft Fair 2016! I am over the moon and very much looking forward to exhibiting once again!!!

Cotehele Winter Craft Fair is an annual event which takes place in November every year, this year on Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th. It is a fantastic fair perfect to kick off your Christmas shopping, with artists and craftspeople from the local areas.

Why not make a day of it, visit Cotehele Craft fair, explore Cotehele house and Gardens, take a walk down to Cotehele Quay and Mill.

Cotehele Christmas Craft Fair 5th - 6th november 2016

Monday Daily Blog Entry!

Moving on to today, Monday 10th October – Really where is time going?!?

I spent the majority of the day packing orders, including a set of my porcelain coasters pressed with summer Jasmine.

Summer Flowering Jasmine
Summer Flowering Jasmine
ceramic coasters

I will be making more of these coasters tomorrow ready for Christmas orders, xmas fairs and Galleries.

Find our coasters here.


This evening Garry mixed some more porcelain slip for me while I finished some glazing (Amelia-Jayne didn’t fancy more than a 40 minute nap this morning – she normally does a 2 hour nap and so I was running very behind, but got the kiln on in the end). I also poured some more scribble bowls with the new slip! See pictures!

Mixing the slip up
1. Mixing the slip up
2. Sieving the slip

Pouring the slip to make scribble bowls
Pouring the slip to make scribble bowls

That is it for today, watching a film and chilling now, will be back for tomorrows posting!

redecoring the kitchen (after partway though)

October 7 – A Day Of Redecorating

Today has been spent helping the hubby redecorating in the kitchen – well mainly holding things in place for him and keeping Amelia-Jayne (the baby!) out of the kitchen!

I found a few minutes to work on some of my etsy shop and add another listing to handmade on Amazon ready for the Christmas season!

Snowflake Christmas wine glass charms £4.99 each

I have also added my snowflake Christmas wine glass charms to my website shop here!


Before and After

I thought I would share a couple of before and after (well half way through) pictures with you!

Before redecorating the kitchen
Before redecorating the kitchen
before redecorating
Before redecorating the kitchen (just laid the tiles out!)

And the result at the end of today:

The end of today
The end of today
At the end of today
At the end of today


topiary garden

October 6 – Topiary Gardens

Thursday October 6

On Thursday mornings I go to my parents house to help Mum set up her website or do other computer work. She is currently building her website for her textile art work.

During this time I worked on my handmade on Amazon site, adding this set of pearl bowls.

nesting bowls

The rest of the day has been spent glazing and putting on a glaze firing and keeping the kids out of Garrys way as he is still home working on the house (he has spent today in the kitchen ripping down tiles and painting cabinets!).

Beautiful Topiary Gardens

I was scrolling through facebook (as you do!) and came across a post about topiary gardens, the images were beautiful and I ended up searching on pinterest for more topiary gardens, they truly are amazing works of art so I thought I would share my favorites here with you.

Some gorgeous topiary gardens:


These topiary elephants have been created by Steve Manning, I love the detail.

To see more see Steve Mannings Website here.

topiary gardens
Topiary Elephants by Steve Manning
topiary garden
chameleon topiary



topiary garden
panda topiary
Gorilla Topiary
Gorilla Topiary
topiary garden
Octopus topiary
topiary gardens
Sleeping bird topiary


These are some of my favorite topiary designs, I could have spent hours on pinterest looking at more ideas!

October 3 – Personalised Gift Tags

Just a quick post tonight about our personalised gift tags, and then I am off to bed (Amelia-Jayne is back in her own room as the paint smell has finally gone which means no more hurdling the travelcot to reach the bed! Woohoo!).

Today started doing home work with Chloe (my six year old) learning all about question marks and exclamation marks! And since has been busy glazing and packing orders, all while watching out for Amelia-Jayne touching wet paint – she actually managed to tip over and split oven a new tub of white paint today (who knew she had the strength to move the paint tubs!). And will end acting the toothfairy (I very nearly forgot!) for tooth number two which fell out just in time for her to enjoy roast dinner!

Making our Personalised Gift Tags

Just a quick post tonight to show in pictures the making process behind our porcelain personalised gift tags.

Hope you enjoy!

personalised gift tags
personalised gift tags

First up making the tags, once dry the gift tags get bisque fired to 1000 degrees C, next (pic 2) the tags are glazed and high fired to 1260 degrees C. Finally to add the mother of pearl to the snowflakes and doves, lustre is applied and the tags are fired for a third and final time.

personalised gift tags
personalised gift tags
personalised gift tags

Next the personalisation for the gift tags is laser printed on to special ceramic transfer paper, and the transfer process is completed.

Finally the personalised gift tags are strung on ribbon. These personalised tags can be provided in a gift box sent along side an item as a gift.


personalised gift tags
personalised gift tags


Some quick links to my facebook page and instagram.

October 2 – Home Decorating & Making

Day Two of my Blogging Journey – Sunday Home Decorating and Making!

Today I have been busy helping the hubby paint the skirting boards, amusing Amelia-Jayne (the baby) while trying to stop her touching the freshly painted skirting.

Workwise I have made loads of wedding gift tags and Christmas tags, along with some orders for wedding charm buttons and wineglass charms.

To make these gift tags I rolled porcelain clay, pressed out the tag shape and applied either doves for the wedding gift tags or snowflakes for the Christmas gift tags.

I have also applied my mother of pearl luster to some bowls and set a firing going.

making christmas gift tags
Making Christmas gift tags, wedding gift tags and wine charms.


Home Decorating
Garry painting the skirtings grey to cover up the yellow mistake! 
home decorating
More painting while Amelia-Jayne watches some cartoons!


I have also added some more products to the website (mainly porcelain bowls) and taken some new photos using my pebble candles again (I do love my pebble candles!).

decorative bowl


cotehele gallery

October 1 – Cotehele Gallery

 A Trip to Cotehele Gallery and Pinch Punch First of the Month

So today opens my first blog post on my new website.

I have loved the idea of writing a diary and creating an online journal for a long time and so today I am starting my new blog “A day in the life of Melissa Ceramics”. My plan is to document each day (we shall see how I get on with that!)

Day One, the first of October 2016 

Today has been busy with both work and house redecorating. We started the day with a quick trip to Waitrose for a treat breakfast (we all need a treat breaky now and then!) and then on to B&Q in Plymouth. We are in the process of redecorating the house and needed more paint etc. My hubby found the paint and his bits and bobs and I found some gorgeous pebble shaped candles which will look perfect in our house and will also work fabulously with my product photography! See picture below!

pearl porcelain bowl

When home I started packing up some orders needed to send before the last post, we made the post with 10 minutes spare! When home and lunched I packed a box of work up for Cotehele Gallery and then we nipped down to deliver it!

Cotehele Gallery

My black and white scribble bowls
My black and white scribble bowls
cotehele gallery
Fabulous handmade goodies at Cotehele Gallery
cotehele gallery
Some of my bowls and a white cat!

There was this gorgeous plant in flower outside Cotehele gallery building which reminds me of orchid flowers.

Do you know what it is? Let me know if you do!

Cotehele Gallery

Cotehele is one of my favorite places to go in the local area, it changes so much between each season and it is a great place for the kids to run around and explore.

The final job for today was for me to put on a glaze firing and for Garry (my husband) to mix me up some slip (the porcelain clay I make my bowls with).

This weeks slip is reclaimed – left over scraps of porcelain clay that has dried out completely and then has been soaked in water overnight before mixing up with our trusty mixer! The mixture is then sieved before being put away for use tomorrow!

I will leave you with a picture of Garry mixing up my slip and Amelia-Jayne (my youngest) supervising!



 Useful Links:

Click here for Cotehele Gallery National Trust website.

Click here for the pebble candles