Seventeen members including two prospective members met at the pottery which is on the outskirts of Saint-Pair-sur-Mer for a guided tour and commentary in French. The pottery has been in business for 61 years producing a wide range of pottery, ceramics and porcelain.
We split into two groups to learn about the different methods production methods. The mix of raw ingredients and the temperatures the pieces are fired at, produce different results and finishes. Production is either by hand (on a potters wheel), using moulds or by machine (for items such as a dinner service where each item must be identical). Once a piece is created, there are then different methods for firing, glazing and decorating it. 90% of the products are hand painted and therefore many can be personalised. An item can take two to three months from start to finish because the process is so labour intensive. It was a real eye opener to see how much work goes into each piece!
Following the tour we had time to browse in the shop (there’s also a ‘seconds’ shop). After our purchases had been made we headed off up the coast road to Granville for lunch at Le Borsalino which looks out onto the harbour. As it was a beautifully sunny day, many of us had a leisurely stroll around the harbour area before lunch.
A comprehensive à la carte and ‘formule’ menu awaited us providing plenty of choice. As you’d expect from a seaside town, there is a good selection of seafood on the menu but also a wide variety of other dishes. The staff were very helpful and we spent a pleasant couple of hours eating, drinking and chatting whilst sitting outside and enjoying the sunshine.
Many thanks to Pat for the suggestion and to Karen for making the arrangements for what was a fascinating and enjoyable day.