Use early American motifs to decorate your home.
Country stoneware has hardworking roots in early American life. These pots and crocks with an outwardly decorative look were used to store all types of foods and dry goods. Today, their artful exteriors take the lead in reminding us that the most utilitarian items can shine with their own simple beauty.
SALT-GLAZED STONEWARE EMBODIES THE SIMPLICITY OF COUNTRY STYLE, FORM BEAUTIFULLY FOLLOWING FUNCTION.
THE FOUNDATION OF COUNTRY DECORATING is built solidly upon the presence of salt-glazed stoneware. The earliest settlers used clay and simple design elements to create versatile storage vessels to successfully keep all types of supplies and foodstuffs. Crockery was created in the form of bowls, jars, pitchers and, of course, crocks in all shapes and sizes. Artisans often embellished the stoneware with their own personal style, adding iconic nature motifs, numbers denoting the size of the piece, and regional designs showing its provenance. Today, collectors look for all of these elements to create showy country displays in cupboards and on open shelves. Try some of these featured ideas to add the graphic style and design of salt-glazed pottery to your own home. All it takes is some paint, a brush and design inspiration.
Stoneware designs can find their way into all types of home decor, such as fabric details fused to a curtain border.
DETAILS FOR DESIGN
Look to your vintage crockery to inspire all types of design treatments. A pitcher’s feather-shaped flourishes can become a border on linen drapes. Cut designs out of fabric and fuse them to curtains with an iron. A vintage metal chair gets a number- inspired treatment that takes it from simple chair to spectacular focal point.
Sketch on linen and hand-embroider your own “bird in hand.” Add a frame decoupaged with paper cutouts and glazed in dark wax (left page). Photograph and print your favorite salt-glazed design to fit within the cutouts of a vintage lantern (place design on the outside of the luminary). Upcycle a cast-off muffin tin. Paint the tin with a gray wash and cut out circles of printed crock designs to place within the openings. Display in your kitchen or pantry area.
BE CREATIVE AND MAKE IT YOUR OWN. ADOPT THESE COUNTRY ICONS INTO YOUR DECORATING MOTIF.
An old scroll- cut window box gets a salt-glazed paint treatment inspired by early stoneware. The piece was first coated in a subtle shade of gray and then embellished with cobalt blue. A final glaze of Saltwash gives the entire piece the same feeling as an early crock.
Numbers on crocks were practical in nature (denoting vessel capacity) but were made into interesting icons by artisans looking to show off their own style.
A watering can gets a salt-glazed effect from handpainted stencil details added on with a liner brush and then distressed with steel wool. A glaze of Saltwash painted over the exterior provides a faded, vintage look.
Embroider on linen and display in a country frame.