Earthenware pottery is a kind of pottery made from clay. It is usually white, beige, or red. This kind of pottery is popular because it can be hand made and is an enjoyable crafting hobby for many people. Depending on the skill and experience of the crafter, the resulting pottery can be quite simple, an object enjoyed for functionality and the natural beauty of its materials, or quite magnificent in its craftsmanship.
It is common for children and young adults to make earthenware pottery in arts classes and summer camps. This craft project is not just for young people, however. Small, simple kinds of earthenware can be made with very little equipment. A pinch pot, for example, only requires clay, water, and perhaps a small knife in order to score designs into the clay. More advanced kinds of pottery require a pottery wheel and materials to put a glaze on the pot.
A pinch pot is a kind of earthenware pottery that is made simply by using a pinching motion to shape a small mound of clay into the shape of a pot. A pinch pot is usually about the size of a small tea cup or even smaller. One of the keys to a pinch pot is making sure that the base of the pot is level so that it won't tumble about when it is set down on a flat surface. Some more advanced kinds of pinch pots have raised bases or even small feet.
A pottery wheel is especially important for tall bowls and vases as these kinds of earthenware pottery cannot be made using a simple pinching motion. Well, perhaps, they can, but it would be very difficult and tedious to make this work and the clay might begin to dry before the project is completely shaped. A pottery wheel spins the clay and allows the potter to get the most effect out of each motion. Using a pottery wheel takes skill, which can be learned through pottery classes.
For earthenware pottery that will be used to serve food or drink, it is important to glaze the clay after it has dried. This is because clay used for earthenware pottery is quite porous and therefore is unsuitable to contain foods and liquids unless it is glazed. There are a number of courses and even retail locations that specialize in glazing where novices can learn the process.