Monday, December 30, 2013

Manufaktura Factory Tour

One of my favorite factories, also happened to be the one that took us on a behind the scenes tour.  It's called Manufaktura, and was a little bit outside the main area where the other pottery shops were.  I love this factories patterns, and their pottery is good quality- nice and thick and heavy.

Here is the entrance to their shop.

They have three nice big rooms full of pottery- all neatly organized by pattern, so you could quickly find plates, or bowls, if that's what you were looking for.

Ah- organization.  You are speaking my language.

This place also sold towels and table linens in similar patterns.

We were taken in the huge factory building behind the store.  We saw this man filling molds with clay. The thick white bowls are the molds, and inside they have the thinner piece of pottery.  The pottery is fired while still in the mold.

Each one of these tools makes a different shape of pottery.

After the first firing, the pottery pulls away from the mold, and it's not hard to remove it.

This company takes orders from all over the world, and produces special patterns and sizes for each place, upon request.

I was so worried I was going to bump into a shelf and break something!

There was a room filled with painting tables.  These women are among the highest paid workers in this area.  They are trained here on the companies special patterns, and eventually they are allowed to develop their own artisan patterns.  

Each piece is turned very quickly.  They use brushes and stamps.

The last step before the final firing, was an additional glaze.  Although it looks opaque, it dries clear, and the colorful patterns can be seen.

It was really cool to see how much work goes into these pieces- and it really explains why they cost so much!  In the United States, a Polish Pottery plate could cost around $40+, and if you come here to Poland you'll pay about $15 or less for it.  I came home with 4 boxes full!

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