Firing clay can be complicated and unpredictable.
Our team can spend an entire week going through all the steps required to create, refine, glaze and fire a piece, however, that does not guaranteed a perfect outcome. We often will not know if a piece will be retail quality until after the final step of sending it through the glaze firing.
More often than not, at least one piece in the kiln comes out with some kind of defect. Rather than throwing imperfect items out, we save them to sell at a reduced price, during our annual Seconds Sale! This is one of our company’s many sustainability initiatives.
Since the Seconds Sale is online, you won’t be able to see the unique product imperfections before purchasing. To give you a better idea of what to expect from the sale, we’ve outlined 5 main types of imperfections to consider as you shop from our Online Seconds Sale. Although defects come in many more forms, these are the main 5 that you are likely to encounter.
Defect 1 : Chipped Clay from the Base
Featuring our Minimal Oil Cruet | Raw Stoneware.
This defect may occur when there is a thin layer or a drop of glaze on the kiln shelf that went unseen, and a piece was placed on top of that glaze. When glaze is fired, it melts and fuses to anything it touches. When the item is pulled away from the shelf, it can chip or break pieces of clay from the base.
Thankfully, this defect goes unnoticed in daily life because it almost always is at the bottom of a piece.
Defect 2 : Glaze Inconsistencies
Featuring our Verdure Vase No. 3 | Stoneware.
Glaze defects may be present in a variety of forms, from runny glaze to crazing to crawling to pinholes and more! Each defect can be due to a variety of variables affecting the glaze before or during the firing process. For example, runny or pooling glaze may occur when a piece is overfired.
No matter the defect, every glaze inconsistency that may occur will always be cosmetic and will not affect the durability or safety of the piece. They may even be a pleasant surprise for those who enjoy extra texture and personality.
Defect 3 : Hairline Cracks
Featuring our 8" Minimal Planter | Raw stoneware.
Hairline cracks are due to a variety of issues. One cause is when too much pressure has been applied to the surface, causing a crack that easily goes unseen before the firing process. For example, if a piece is stamped at the base without enough support, it may press through the clay and cause a thin crack that can become a larger one once fired.
Hairline cracks come in a variety of lengths. You will never receive a product with a crack so large that you can see through the open crack. Hairline cracks will always been sealed on one side of a piece.
What’s great about this defect is that when a piece like a planter is filled, the crack goes unnoticed.
Defect 4 : Extreme Warping
Featuring our Geodesic Fruit Bowl | Porcelain.
Extreme warping is when an area of a piece is stretched outside of its intended form.
For example, instead of a bowl with a circular opening, the edges may appear pulled out into a more oval shaped. Warping may also happen at the base of the piece. This may cause the piece from sitting flat on an even surface.
This defect is perfect for those who enjoy more organic shapes.
Defect 5 : Efflorescent Glow
Featuring our 10" Minimal Planter | Raw Stoneware.
Efflorescence is a residual dark, amber colored glow that may appear on the exterior surface of a ceramic piece. Light efflorescence that results in subtle tone variations is normal for our stoneware clay body and to be expected.
However, extreme discoloration may occur from time to time and is often due to material or recipe inconsistencies, such an increase in iron content or soluble sulphates in our clay body. The discolorations may also be due to overfiring.
Efflorescence is purely a cosmetic imperfection. It does not affect the durability of the piece in any way. The effect may even be a pleasant surprise for those who enjoy additional color or texture.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: How large are hairline cracks, and will it continue to grow larger with use?
A: Hairline cracks are thin cracks that occur only on one side of a piece. Though they come in a variety of lengths, the crack itself will never grow. We do not offer any dinnerware with hairline cracks to be extra safe.
Q: What distinguishes a hairline crack from a normal crack?
A: In a normal crack, you can see through the opening of the crack. In a hairline crack, you cannot. For example, a hairline crack may be seen on the interior of a planter, but not on the exterior. You will never receive a piece with a crack so large that you can see through to the other side.
Q: Does the imperfection of a Seconds Sale item affect its durability?
A: No. Whether its hairline cracks or extreme warping, none of the defects offered at our Seconds Sale are significant enough to compromise the durability of the piece.
Q: Are Seconds Sale items still food safe, dishwasher safe, and microwave safe?
A: Yes. No seconds sale items are defective enough to compromise its safety or usability. They will always be safe to handle, safe to eat off of, dishwasher safe, and microwave safe!
Q: Can I return a Second Sale item?
A: No. All sales on Seconds Sale items are final. However, if the piece arrives broken, we will kindly replace it if notified within 14 days of arrival.
Have any additional questions?
Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org