Contributor post by Natalie
Please join us in welcoming New Day Pottery, our featured member!
Tell us about yourself
My name is Judy Abdelaziz. I have been married for 26 years and have 2 son’s (19 & 24). We have lived in Charlotte, North Carolina for the past 16 years but we are originally from Montana where I grew up on a dairy farm.
When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?
My husband had bought a wheel and a kiln for me in 2008. Soon after I quit my day job and my husband said “You need to make enough money to pay for your hobby.” Being highly competitive with myself I jumped right into a pottery business. In 2009 I went to 16 arts and crafts or pottery shows. I started selling on Etsy in 2011 in addition to selling in Gift shops and shows.
Tell us a bit about your products
A New Day Pottery I offer a range of products, from functional to decorative. My most commonly sold items are in the $20-$40 price range. They include: berry bowls, brie bakers, earring bowls, wine bottle rests and stopper sets and yarn bowls.
I am very excited about my new line which is primarily done using textured slabs. Some of these pieces have been added to the online shop but they primarily get sold at Art shows and in galleries. They include olive oil bottles, salt and pepper shakers, vases, teapots, trays and square mugs.
I ship to the US and have shipped to Canada upon request.
My pieces are made with stoneware clay and fired to cone 6 in oxidation. In 2013 I started making my own glazes and continue to experiment with new colors.
What inspires your work?
In December of 2012 I went to a workshop at the John C. Campbell Folk School. Sylvia Coppola taught a class on hand building and it changed the way I make pottery. This class helped me to use wheel throwing and slab building in combination to make more creative pieces. Even my simple forms have evolved from this experience.
What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?
My dream is to be able to make one of a kind, beautiful pieces that people can treasure for a lifetime.
Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?
My clay studio is in my garage where I make my pottery. There is a showroom in my dining room. The bonus room in our house holds my photography studio, packing and shipping materials and showroom overflow. My office resides in the kitchen and on my lap on the couch. So needless to say it flows throughout our house.
Of course it would be great to have a building dedicated to my business but right now this works out great because I can go into and out of the studio all day long working on pieces as they dry.
Where can people find out more about you and your business?
Why do you believe people should buy handmade, such as your products, vs buying mass-produced products from box stores?
It is so important to support artists. When you buy handmade, you know that it’s going directly to someone that has put their heart into making something special and not to a millionaire who sits behind his desk while factory workers make something thousands of other people will own.
Do you have any advise for someone thinking of opening their own business? Any advise for those wanting to sell on Etsy?
There is not a lot of advice for someone starting their own business except to make sure it doesn’t take over. Be sure to continue a healthy routine and take care of YOU. As far as selling on Etsy, I have enjoyed selling on Etsy. I would recommend joining teams, making treasuries and having at least 50 items. This really boosted my sales.
If you would like to be featured, please go to the CIJ Etsy Forum and fill out the questionnaire. Please note you must be a member of the CIJ Etsy team to be featured.