Finding beautiful and affordable ceramics, it has been a struggle for life. So when I discovered my favorite blogger-turned-stylist and her mother were starting up their own ceramics brand, the search was over! Charlotte Everaert is one of the most colorful people I know and as it turns out she’s got it from her momma, ceramic artist Kristien De Ridder. I picked up a bunch of my favorite items for shooting and asked these ladies about their plans for Atelier Turquoise:
Where did your passion for ceramics start? What is your first ceramics love moment you can remember?
A few yours ago I was following an initiation course at the art academy (adult education/dayclass) There I came in contact with a lot of different disciplines of art, like etching, sculpture, drawing, painting… There was one day where we had to sculpt a naked model using clay. I really liked working with the material, that was my true first love moment with clay/ceramics.
What materials do you use? Can you tell us a little bit more about the clay of your choice and the paints you work with?
The clay isn’t really special/mention worthy! But I mix the glaze myself so I get unique colors. The nice thing about making my ceramics is that I never know how a piece is gonna turn out. It depends on the location in the oven, the amount of glaze, the thickness of the clay, the kind of clay.. These are all factors that have an influence on the end product. Like that, I make unique one-of-a-kind pieces because they’re all handmade. It’s no factory work like some of the ceramics brands out there, so don’t expect identical items.
Where do you get your inspiration for your colors and shapes?
Museums and art, exquisite textures, travels, extravagant fabrics and clothes, nature… the beauty of the world around me inspires me.
What is it like to work with your daughter? Do you look a lot alike or are it your differences that make you a good duo?
It’s fun because we have the same taste/aesthetics, love for colors. but character-wise we differ. I am more of a chaotic person, Charlotte is very organized. We have complementary skills, so we enforce each other. We inspire each other as well.
Do you have an atelier with an oven at home? How does it work practically, to make your own ceramics? What do you need?
Every item is molded by hand, glazed with care and baked in our atelier.
First, each item is molded and dried for a few hours. When it’s dry, it needs to be polished. Then I bake it for the first time in the oven at 900°C: The clay becomes ceramical. The next step is to glaze the item, using different glazing techniques and colors. The last step is a final bake at 1100°C. After that, the item’s finished!
If you could give one golden, or should I say turquoise, tip to aspiring ceramics artists, what would it be?
Follow your intuition, only make things you think are beautiful. That is very important, you have to develop your own style. Stay close to yourself. Do something that suits you, don’t do anything that feels unnatural. I don’t like really tiny detailed work , so I don’t do that.
Making your own ceramics, it’s the new black! What sets you apart from other designers?
I like designing unique ceramics that you don’t see anywhere else, using innovative shapes and color combinations. Bright colors attract me a lot, not only when making ceramics but also in my interior, outfits, … I live a very colorful life!
What can we expect from Atelier Turquoise in the future? What’s your ideal scenario?Short-term: I am currently developing flower and plant pots, so those will be for sale soon on the webshop! We launched the webshop on the 1st of February, now the plan is to look for physical interior/deco stores who want to sell our products and also reach out to caterers, wedding planners and such because we also offer a ‘customized ceramics’ program, where we can design ceramics that are customized, for instance for a wedding/party/restaurant.
Long-term: I’d love to keep designing unique pieces and challenging myself every time to be more creative. I’d like to create more decorative designs that are seen as ‘art’, more than as a utensil. Our ultimate goal? Make people’s homes more colorful!