1. Dear Vanessa & Ari, I am very happy to introduce you and GOOD CLAY SUNSHINE as part of our Female Founder Community. Please feel free to tell us a little about yourself and your company.

Thank you Lisa, we are very happy too! We have been building this small ceramics studio for handmade ceramics and pottery courses together for about 6 years. It is located in Neukölln in the Reuterkiez and our customers and orders are diverse: from neighbors who commission a small series of plates to fine dining restaurants that have their dishes custom-made to favorite projects such as the ceramic furnishings in the design cabins from @raus .life or the production of special individual pieces for exhibitions and galleries. There are limited collections in our web shop and anyone who comes to our studio can be lucky and find reduced individual pieces or various limited time offerings. Twice a year we also hold studio sales or present new collections.

2. How did you get into the craft of pottery and start your business? What did you do before that?

The material clay played a role for both of us during our studies and design training, but then faded into the background again for a few years. Ari was responsible for conception and text in a communications agency for a long time, while Vanessa looked after various clients and their campaigns with graphic work and art direction.

There is actually no point in time when it was founded. Little by little, the joy of pottery crept back more and more, initially with small workshops and courses, then with a first after-work turntable in the shared office under the desk. The tone actually set the tone at some point on its own and today's ceramics studio emerged organically over time - there isn't really an official beginning...

3. In June this year you had top-class guests in your studio! Klaas, Schmitti and Jakob visited for the BAYWATCH BERLIN podcast. Tell me, what was that like for you? (We are big BAYWATCH BERLIN fans ourselves!).

It was a great pleasure for us to have Klaas, Schmitti, Jakob and the Studio Bummens team there. Cool ceramics were also created while the three of them, and us listeners, talked. This is definitely not easy when you sit at the turntable for the first time. An extremely nice visit and exciting to be able to experience their podcast production live.

4. How do you implement sustainability in your everyday work?

Although ceramics have a very long lifespan, the energy required is also extremely high. That's why we only use 100% green electricity. We avoid overproduction and primarily create commissioned work and small series. In our everyday lives, we also try to think and act as ecologically as possible and to save energy and resources wherever possible. Like every company, we need to keep an eye on our processes and optimize them to become more efficient. It's definitely not always easy to take the most sustainable path.

A clear example is the recycling of clay. It is very time-consuming because the dried clay has to be soaked for days in order to then remove the moisture again and finally knead it. The process takes a lot of time, space and energy. Buying new material will probably end up being cheaper and easier. The leftover clay piles up, especially during labor-intensive periods such as the Christmas season. But we don't have the heart to throw away clay. That's why we give away leftovers when we can't make it ourselves. For example, to the children in the children's courses, at the beginning of the workshops we also talk about sustainability in materials science and let the kids take part in the recycling process.

This creates a lot more appreciation for the material and the environment. We also recycle glazes and packaging materials wherever possible. We deliver our packages personally or with DHL GoGreen for CO2-neutral shipping.

5. What inspires you for your designs and approximately how long does it take from the idea of ​​a new product to completion?

We love good food, as do the people who come to us. A large part of our work is the development of table culture projects for industries related to food, life and living. When developing our products, we take into account the corporate identity, the character of the location as well as the aesthetics and practical requirements of the customers. We always keep the overall concept in mind, so that in some cases we develop not only the ceramics, but also other communication strategies for the companies.

As already mentioned, we both previously worked in the communications industry and therefore have the advantage of being able to provide holistic support to the respective companies if necessary. The actual craft process is very time-consuming and takes up to 15 working days. After we have shaped the workpieces by hand or turned them on the turntable, they have to dry for a few days, then stay in the kiln for more than a whole day during the first firing, are then glazed and have to be put in the kiln again for the same amount of time.

6. Who would you say the pottery courses in your studio in Berlin-Neukölln are right for?

Actually there is something for everyone. A lot of people come to us who have never worked on the potter's wheel before and really want to try it out. But there are also some who would like to deepen their skills. They then do this in further sessions or use our weekly Flex Studio. Here you can use our studio and the materials at fixed times and work freely. We also offer hand building courses in which participants learn various techniques such as thumb pressure, bead or plate techniques. These courses are mainly booked individually by larger groups as an event, such as team events, bachelor parties or children's birthdays. We have discovered that we really love being hosts and are passionate about always developing new formats for events.



If you would like to find out more about Vanessa, Ari and GOOD CLAY SUNSHINE, please take a look here:

To the website: www.goodclaysunshine.com
To Instagram: @goodclaysunshine