Lori Keenan Watts - Fine Mess Pottery
Lori Watts Fine Mess Pottery
Upcoming events:
Portland Pottery's Annual Holiday Show & Sale
December 17-20, 2020

Holiday Pottery Shop
Monkitree, Gardiner, Maine
November 17 - December 24, 2020

Lori Keenan Watts is a potter, gardener, and notorious cat lady. Lori is the creative force behind Fine Mess Pottery, and makes soda-fired stoneware pottery at her Augusta, Maine studio. Her work is cheery and whimsical, intended to bring joy to the every day rituals of making & serving food & drink

What is soda-fired pottery? I'm so glad you asked.

Soda firing is a type of stoneware firing wherein soda ash and baking soda are introduced to the flame when the kiln is nearly at its hottest. The heat of the firing splits the sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate (soda ash and baking soda, respectively) into their component elements, sodium and carbon. The flame carries this vapor into the firing chamber and onto the pots. The sodium interacts with the silica and calcium carbonate in the ware (as well any slips or glazes that have been applied to the ware) to form a layer of glass. It's fired to a very high temperature - between 2200 and 2400 degrees fahrenheit - so it's very durable.

The flame deposits the sodium more heavily wherever it strikes the ware directly, and more lightly on the lee sides of pots, making for a delightful irregularity. This can be observed whenever one side of a pot is very glassy and shiny, sometimes with the design softened or melted away entirely. In fact this is the great appeal of soda firing for many: it allows the flame to collaborate in the final result.

Soda firing is not for control freaks! But if you love spontaneity and uniqueness and surprises, if you can see beauty in irregularity, check out Fine Mess Pottery here.

You can also find Fine Mess Pottery at these locations:

Mainely Pottery, Belfast, Maine

Lisa-Marie's Made in Maine, Bath, Maine

Gifts at 136, Damariscotta, Maine

Bay View Company, Saco, Maine

Portland Pottery, Portland, Maine

Monkitree, Gardiner, Maine


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Fine Mess Pottery stoneware Soda fired sugar creamer
Stripey Sugar & Creamer Set, $80
Fine Mess Pottery Soda fired stoneware sugar jar
Dotopia Sugar Jar, $45
Fine Mess Pottery Soda fired Mug
Blue Blossom Mug, $45
Soda fired stoneware pottery bottle Maine
Squat Bottle, $38