Since I have changed the shop to become less of an antique shop and more a space selling a mix of things that I like, I have been on the lookout for some pottery to sell. Then in September I happened to be in a village in Dorset (having a cream tea I have to confess), when I found some work on sale there by Jonathan Garratt. So I phoned and asked if I could visit him and was amazed by what I found. He lives in an eighteenth century house which, with its barns, encloses a paved courtyard full of plants, colourful garden pots and decorations of varying shapes and sizes. Beyond lies the garden where he keeps his chickens, grows his fruit and vegetables and stores the wood he is drying (ready for chopping and using to fire the kilns he has built himself).
Jonathan studied archaeology and is also the son of a dealer (who by an extraordinary coincidence, knew my father), so the ancient forms of cooking utensils inform the shape of much of his pottery and the colour and surface pattern is heavily influenced by his love of African textiles. I had a wonderful time in his showroom barn surrounded by his amazing array of shapes colours and came away with a selection of mugs, bowls and jugs for use, but also some larger pieces. They are in the shop now, so I hope you will come to have a look if you’re passing.