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Mary Shumate

As a child I loved making mud pies.  When I got the opportunity as an adult to “play in clay” I felt right at home.  I love the feel of the smooth clay under my fingers as the wheel turns, and in the end the clay is formed into a useful shape.  I tend to be a “functional” potter, so I look for ideas that can be used to create functional rather than strictly decorative pieces.  Some of my work is thrown on the wheel and some pieces are made from slabs of clay.  But the focus is always to make something useful and useable.


All my pieces are stoneware which is oven, microwave, and dishwasher safe.  The glazes are food safe.  I’m always playing around with new glazes, but I have three that I use consistently. They are my standard.


My first pottery class was at Community School in Belfast, PEI in the late 70’s.  I loved it so much that I took an evening pottery class at Holland College.  At that time I didn’t pursue the pottery because of family and time constraints, so I put pottery on the back burner while we raised our 8 children. Meanwhile, we moved to Kingston, Ontario, where I enrolled in pottery classes and became a member of the Kingston Potters Guild, soon to be on the Executive and participating in their semi-annual sales. We moved back to the Island in 2012, and I was happy to find an outlet for my pottery.  Having something like pottery to make helps pass the long winter months as I prepare stock for the summer sales.

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