About Wildwood Pottery
Wildwood Pottery studio is located near the small town of Plummer, Idaho, in the panhandle of north Idaho. this is where all the "magic" happens.
Wildwood's humble beginnings were student pieces created during classes at the local college and sold at student sales and craft fairs in the late 1980's and early 1990's. Some of these early pieces may be seen in our photo album.
Eventually, an older pottery wheel took up residence in the family room and a small kiln was hooked up in the garage. This was not a very productive period, because as anyone who has worked with clay knows, it is messy!! Complaints about splashes of slurry on the desk beside the pottery wheel, clay fingerprints on the telephone receiver, and pieces of clay on the floor were justified, but dampened my enthusiasm!
After our elder daughter married, the studio occupied half of her recently vacated bedroom in the basement. My husband's hunting and reloading equipment occupied the other half of the room. Soon, a nice new Shimpo wheel graced the center of the room and a shiny new Cress kiln joined the smaller one in the garage.
When our younger daughter moved into her own home, the reloading equipment moved into her bedroom (now my husband's den), and the pottery "studio" let out a sigh of relief and quickly expanded to fill the whole room. This arrangement seemed ever so spacious to both of us at the time. At that time we operated as Pottery by Merrilyn.
Well, times do change, don't they?! In the years since, more classes have been taken, new and wonderful techniques learned, and more equipment acquired. With greater skill, more pieces take less time to complete and more shelves are needed to accommodate the growing amount of green and bisque ware. Thus, plans were made for a separate building with work and storage areas, more shelving and space for equipment, and a firing room. Construction was begun in summer 2002 and complete that fall.
The new Wildwood Pottery studio houses the same Shimpo wheel and Cress kiln, not so new now, and also a newer Skutt kiln and a large slab roller and small extruder. Classes are also being considered for a small number of students for the near future.
Our preferred tool for creating pots is the pottery
wheel, but we have been known to alter thrown forms, add handles of clay, reed
or twigs, and hand-build pots of many types and sizes using a variety of
Our clay of choice is porcelain, but we also enjoy using stoneware and earthenware. Porcelainís light color makes a wonderful canvas for the painting the whimsical floral designs which are a recurring theme of decoration on our pots. These lovely flowers are hand brushed one stroke at a time.
Impressed, sprigged and stamped designs are
also used. Dragonflies, fish and
leaves and other themes from nature add interest to these pots.
All functional pottery is fired in an
electric kiln. This completes the
transition from raw clay to finished vessel, making the pot suitable for use in
your home. In recent years, open pit
firing has piqued our interest and yielded some very pleasing results.
Pit fired pots are for decorative use only and should not be used with
food or liquids.
Our studio is open by appointment and visitors are always welcome. You may also see our work at our web site.