My heart always falls when the weather is horrendous and I’ve got a day planned to go out with N.  He’d probably not be too bothered about being out in the rain, but I’m not that keen.   So over the break I decided maybe we should give pottery painting a go.

wet weather activity - pottery painting  Bubbablue and me

Now, of course you can do pottery (or glass) painting at home.  It can be pretty cheap if you just want to decorate a mug, plate, tile and you can get pens or paint to use where you just bake the crockery afterwards.   We’ve used this activity with mini plates at our NCT’s Cheeky Monkey Tea Parties before, and it always goes down well with the tots.

But we needed a trip out, and there’s a great pottery place just under an hour away in Witney.  The bonus is that there’s plenty of free parking, some nice places to grab some lunch if needed and nice shops we don’t have near us.  Although I didn’t get to explore any of those being with N.

N’s just getting into colouring and drawing. Since school he’s done a lot more, in particular colouring, and writing, much of it a lot of garbled mixed up letters and zigzags.  We don’t get much painting sent home but I thought he might like painting an item.

He couldn’t believe the shop when we walked in.  The Pottery Place do decopatch as well as pottery painting, and baby hand and footprints. In fact, I think the last time I went was before he was 6 weeks old to get his done on a tile.

pottery painting colour tiles

We chose our pieces – me a plate (one time I went I painted a really nice strawberry bowl) so wanted a nice plate for breads or similar, and N a welly boot money box.  I was a little wary of what shade of brown N’s would end up, given he started going over colours he’d already painted, but on the whole it’s a nice mix of green, purple, pink and blue with a touch of brown on the top.

painting pottery

painting a pottery wellington boot

I decided after having painted pottery a couple of times (the first was on a work social with drink involved – the end products were ‘interesting’), that less is definitely more, so opted to do some trailing leaves and branches around the outside.  Perfect if we’re having an italian meal to use it for garlic bread, or for any summer meals eating outside where we need a small serving plate.

painting pottery at The Pottery Place

N didn’t take long – probably about 10 minutes, and mine was a bit longer.  There was a small party of kids going on while we were there, and they seemed to be very intricate and detailed with what they were painting.  Not like N’s swirl of colour.  We decided not to have drinks while we were there – I could see N knocking stuff over the tables and paints if we did.

We paid for our pieces, and left them to be fired.  That’s the only problem with pottery painting, you do need to return to pick up your pieces at a later date, although 3 days isn’t too bad if you live nearby.  We couldn’t get back until a week later.  Luckily N didn’t mind too much because he realised it was going to be dried out first and then fired.

After a bit of a walk because N wanted to see what else was in Witney, we dodged the puddles and went to grab a quick lunch before heading back home.  It’s lovely to just do a relaxing activity like this and not to have to clear it up at home afterwards.

A week later we nipped over to The Pottery Place to pick them up.  I was really pleased with my plate, even my slightly wonky middle leaves didn’t look skewed, and N’s boot turned out better than I expected.  He was very proud of it and insisted on showing his dad, and it now has pride of place on his dresser.

final fired pottery

If you go to a pottery place to paint, it’s not the cheapest if you all have a go, and choose more than small items to paint, but it’s great for a treat, or for a birthday activity.

Maybe next time I’ll have to let N loose with my decopatch supplies and see what he makes of that.  Ripping and sticking has got to be something he likes doing!

Have you ever painted pottery?  How did you get on?

18 Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing. DIY pottery painting places are definitely a great way to have some fun when spending time outside isn’t an option. Taking time during the day to create something for yourself is relaxing, and it gives you something to show off when company is over!

  2. We live right by a pottery painting place and I’ve never been, this looks like a lot of fun though. Maybe we should visit! x

  3. I keep meaning to take Sebastian pottery painting as there is a newish shop opened near us. Your plate is gorgeous x

  4. Aw now this is a great idea, shame it doesnt work for entertaining my cats lol, I love the boot x

  5. Aww this is such a good and I love that you get to paint your own item. My kids would absolutely love to do this x

  6. It sounds like a lovely relaxed day and I really like your design on the plate, simple but pretty. It’s a bit of a pain that you have to go back, that might put me off a little bit I guess it’s fine if you’re not too far away. It’s something I’d love to try sometime.

    • Yes, the going back is a pain. It’s handy if you go as a group then one person can collect everyone’s.

  7. I must do this with Pickle – I did it with all my others and we had a great time. Our local place is also a cafe too – bonus! I can have a coffee whilst he paints! Kaz x

    • Yes, ours can provide basic refreshments, cakes, sandwiches, drinks. Although we weren’t there for long enough

  8. We have been a couple of times recently, Monkey chose a plate last time and we put his hand prints on it. Its such a great activity although I sometimes struggle to keep him entertained while I finish my piece! x

    • Yes, I was worried about that as well, but thankfully n was quite good about sitting nicely. It helped we had a window seat overlooking the road and other shops

  9. You know from our FB conversation that I’m a big fan of the Pottery Place, but you’ve made me realise that I’ve never actually painted anything myself. I’ve come up with the ideas and got Monkey’s fingers to do the painting. Not thought of this as activity we can do together before.

    • Ah you should. It’s surprisingly hard to get what you want without streaking or light and dark areas.

  10. Last time I painted pottery was in Primary school when we went to Swansea and then I distinctly remember going to mining tunnels or caves after. It is a great activity when it is wet.

  11. I haven’t done anything like this since my daughter was really little and we did some footprints on mugs for Christmas presents. It was a fairly small place and I remember a LOT of kids (and babies and buggies) so it was a bit more stressful. Now my daughter’s older, I’m sure she would love painting her own though.

  12. I went pottery painting years ago with the kids and they loved it. I think we even had a birthday party there at one stage. Definitely worth having a go at!

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