Change of Pace

I was going to show you my progress on the Family Tree quilt, but I decided to wait a couple more days for that. To date, I have completed 17 out of 25 blocks. 8 more to go!!

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I love English fine bone china and porcelain items. But once in a while, I find myself attracted to the more primitive and rustic ware that are characteristic of the colonial period as well, one of which is the Westerwald pottery. Shown are reproduction of storage crocks made in the Westerwald region in Germany, certified by the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation:

A quick summary from Wikipedia: “The Westerwald is known for its basalt mines and distinctive salt-glazed grey Westerwald Pottery with cobalt blue decoration. The pottery industry is centred round HΓΆhr-Grenzhausen. In the mid 16th century, potters from Raeren in Belgium migrated into the Westerwald, bringing with them some of their moulds. This type of pottery was taken to the New World and was found in the early Chesapeake (New England) settlements.”

The characteristic “dimpled” surface that you see, besides the blue grey base color due to the clay, is due to salt being thrown at the pieces (salt-glazing) during the firing process in a hot kiln:

These Westerwald pieces I have are supposedly food, microwave and dishwasher safe, although I have yet to locate a microwave that is tall enough to fit these crocks. :) Also, I find it a bit odd to serve lemonade out of them. So, they have only been used for decorative purposes thus far. I could store my potatoes or onions or turnips in them, I supposed. ;) But we have pantries for those things….

I have in mind to adapt the design for an applique quilt one of these days.