UFO and Dodo Coffee Mug

The cows had been disappearing, one by one, all summer long…


The Story

The cows had been disappearing, one by one, all summer long. They were usually found within a week in a neighbor’s field or frolicking in the nearby woods. They were, without exception, giddy. Their coats were shiny and brushed, their lashes even longer, making their big dewy eyes even more expressive than usual. They all mooed in cadence when returned to their herd, a noisy choir of contentment and gossip. And there were other changes as well.

Shelly got up before dawn, before the rooster even brushed his teeth. She found herself running to the barn though she was certain none of her siblings were even awake. The dew was cool on her ankles and she heard the whippoorwill make the last of the night’s announcements.

The cows were swaying sleepily around the water trough when she came in. Gertrude stepped right into the milking stand and looked at her expectantly. “Whatcha got for me today?” whispered Shelly warming her paws under the hot water. Gertrude shook her tail. “Ok, here we go.” Shelly settled onto the milking stool and positioned the canister. Squirt.

“Oh wow.” Gertrude looked pleased.

“Pistachio chocolate chip. This stuff is amazing!”

The Nitty Gritty

The word “mug” can be traced to early 16th century (originally Scots and northern English, denoting an earthenware bowl).  It likely comes from the early hedgehog term “muggetub” which loosely translates to “plunge bath” or “hot tubbe” in Olde English.  An extraordinarily tidy animal, hedgehogs of Scotland enjoyed combining their daily ablutions with daily whiskey, frequently resulting in what is today referred to as the Hot Toddy.

Our darn mugs are handmade and are approximately 3 inches wide by 4.5 to 5 inches tall. They generally hold about 16 ounces.

The Goods

All Darn Pottery is either hand built or individually hand thrown on the potters wheel, by little hedgehogs, with locally sourced clay. Our pieces are finished with lead-free, non toxic glazes made right here in our studio in the beautiful Blue Ridge. Our tableware is bright and durable, fired three separate times to temperatures exceeding 2000 degrees. It also feels really good in your hands, with sturdy handles on mugs, terrific balance in plates, good stackability in bowls, and sturdy edges all around. This is not your grandma’s fine china. This is your own darn china.

Every piece is individually made and painted and may therefore look a little different. The minor variations in height, width, and illustration are entirely the hedgehogs’ fault. A lot depends on how much they’ve eaten that morning and the proximity of the next meal. All of the colors look great together and make your table look really happy.

You should also know that our pottery is made without any lead, cadmium, asbestos, anchovies, pink slime or any other yucky stuff. It’s perfectly food safe. Also, our farm has solar power. And bears.

Darn Pottery does not mind being dishwashed because it is decorated with glaze that has been fired into the piece itself. It’s not sublimation and it’s not coming off. Just stack gently and don’t let the critters have a party in there. We do not recommend microwaving as the pieces may get pretty hot. Darn Pottery is not for cooktop or oven use. Do not use to freeze food or drinks. Use a Mason jar instead. Basically, avoid extreme temperature changes. The same goes for the pots.

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And now for something completely different...

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