Please help me come up with a name for my pottery shop
November 28, 2017 11:22 AM   Subscribe

I've never sold my stuff before, but am participating in my first ever sale at our studio for christmas in just over a week. I've put some of my work on insta and FB to attract people in and already made some sales, which is amazing! But now I'm having more direct enquiries and commission requests I thought I better set up an etsy shop. I'm just at a loss as to the name.

My husband suggested just using my initials - like XX Pottery, but it feels a bit corporate/impersonal? We're based in Vancouver BC but move around a bit, so place name feels wrong too. I currently have quite a wide selection of stuff, from animal busts to jewelry and bowls/cups. So it's not very... coherent? as a brand.

I put some pics of the most recent stuff here.

What name would you put on this? I'm struggling to come up with something. TIA for any help/suggestions!
posted by everydayanewday to Shopping (28 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
How about "Creature Pottery"? The animals and other organic forms jumped out at me, and I also like the fact that the word creature has the "create" root.
posted by dlugoczaj at 11:27 AM on November 28, 2017

posted by Caxton1476 at 11:28 AM on November 28, 2017

Deep Roots Pottery
Home Planet Pottery
Comfort Pottery
posted by fingersandtoes at 11:32 AM on November 28, 2017

The common element is you, and it looks like you have a point of view. I hope you just use your name. Maybe just your last name with initials if you're worried about privacy. You're an artist.
posted by amtho at 11:33 AM on November 28, 2017 [9 favorites]

Something that hones in on your glazing technique. A Glazed Expression (more on the dreamy side, rather than the dull)? Fired and Glazed? Glaze of Glory?
posted by Iris Gambol at 11:34 AM on November 28, 2017

Clay is Not Dirt Pottery
posted by lois1950 at 11:44 AM on November 28, 2017

Other Forest Pottery

Calm Creature Ceramics

Morphing Matter Mudworks

Bowl of Bear

Everyday A New Day Ceramics (no, really)

Silver Chairs

Third Bowl
posted by suedehead at 11:59 AM on November 28, 2017 [3 favorites]

nthing Glaze of Glory. Reminds me of the Zenna Henderson "People" books and the little girl who has to leave her planet because it's going to go up "inna a blaze of glory!"
posted by MovableBookLady at 12:05 PM on November 28, 2017

After looking at your work (which is beautiful), I think you need the word "Nature" in there somewhere. Back to Nature Pottery? Natural Wonders Pottery (sounds too much like a woo mall shop)? Pottery by Nature?
posted by jabes at 12:10 PM on November 28, 2017

A name that implies certain qualities to your work—like crazed finishes or animal themes or particular vessel forms—seems premature and limiting. It's early days for you and you're exploring a lot of different directions. A name that comes from how you feel about your pottery would be better, but to be authentic it would have to come from you, I think, not from us telling you how [pictures of] your pottery makes us feel.

Unless your own real name is terribly ungainly, or you're committed to anonymity, I'd use your first and last names—not corporate/impersonal initials—as the unique identifier part of the business identity, and then think a bit about what exactly the business is and how you would prefer to describe it. So is it a company, like "Jane Doe Pottery," "Jane Doe Clayworks," "Jane Doe Studios"... or is it you, doing your art: "Jane Doe, Potter," "Jane Doe, Ceramist" ? That kind identity is a big umbrella under which you can create a lot of things whose only common thread may be that they came from your hands.
posted by mumkin at 12:20 PM on November 28, 2017 [8 favorites]

Most of the names we come up with based on what you've told us will already be taken or be very close to something that's already taken (lots of businesses of all kinds have a variation of "nature" in the title). So I'd suggest thinking more about what makes you unique. Using your name would be one way to do that. You could also use the name or nickname of a family member or even a beloved pet. Is there a character in a book or movie who speaks to you? A family in-joke that could be the basis for a name? A lake or mountain that is meaningful to you? Try making a list of 50 or even 100 proper nouns that mean something to you. (By making the number 100 instead of say, 10, you'll be forced to use whatever you can think of instead of discarding words because you think they might sound stupid - this could have awesome results).

Your work is really beautiful. Good luck.
posted by FencingGal at 12:20 PM on November 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

Should have added this: my last name is a very common English noun. It occurred to me that if I ever needed a pseudonym, I'd use the Lithuanian word for that noun (I'm of Lithuanian descent). Something like that could be cool too.
posted by FencingGal at 12:22 PM on November 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

You seem concerned with it being too corporate, so how about something that feels personal? i.e. Pottery By Julie or Julie's Pottery Creations.
posted by AppleTurnover at 12:31 PM on November 28, 2017

First of all, nice work. While it doesn't have a "brand" as you say, it seems very coherent as a body of work, probably because it reflects your unique tastes, ideas, and internal themes. I'd go with something related to either your name, favorite things, or something else that's meaningful to you. Let the creator be the brand, even if it's metaphoric or obscured. I like FencingGal's suggestion of making a long list of proper nouns and seeing what really resonates with you. Good Luck!
posted by perrouno at 12:38 PM on November 28, 2017

Clay & Nature
posted by Oyéah at 12:48 PM on November 28, 2017

There's a section in the creatively-translated Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám, a collection of 1000-year-old Persian poetry, which is a conversation between a group of clay pots about the potter who made them, as an allegory of humans discussing the nature and intentions of God. Perhaps a carefully-chosen phrase would make a good name for a pottery shop. There were several different editions of the English translation with different wording which you might look through, but at a glance here are a couple examples from the third edition: "All Sorts And Sizes" and "Loquacious Vessels".
posted by XMLicious at 12:52 PM on November 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

Hearth Fire Pottery
Hearth Hart Pottery

I'm mostly thinking in word pictures, so a logo could be a hearth with a doe or dear, or a heart.
posted by dreamling at 12:52 PM on November 28, 2017

posted by a3matrix at 12:52 PM on November 28, 2017

Every Clay a New Clay...
posted by Nancy_LockIsLit_Palmer at 12:54 PM on November 28, 2017

I follow various potters/ceramics artists and I really like names that are the artist's name in some way. For me, puns and cutesy names are less preferable to the clean aesthetic of initials or a name. How do you sign your pots? Maybe use that as a basis so that people can find you again more easily if they have bought one of your objects or were gifted one. Also, your own style may change in a way that makes cutesy or very specific names involving subject matter or glaze styles something you grow out of. Good luck! The resurgence of pottery and ceramic arts that is happening now is exciting.
posted by quince at 1:06 PM on November 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

I strongly recommend just using your name, especially if your name is unique or easy to remember. You'll get tired of a pun, or your style might change in the future such that any name that includes nature or organic wouldn't fit any longer. I have a relative who does pottery, and her company/website name references a type of art she made about 10 years ago. Now that her technique and style has changed, she's stuck with a name that doesn't work so well anymore, but she has a clientele so she doesn't want to change it.
posted by OrangeDisk at 2:00 PM on November 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

The Potted Owl
posted by MonkeyToes at 2:13 PM on November 28, 2017 [2 favorites]

not sure of an idea, but wow, I love your stuff! in the Raku and Bizen realm, very natural and with a Northwest feel to a lot of it. nature theme, fire theme, only you know what you're thinking about when you're making stuff....

Crazed and Crackled ?
Campfire clay ?

will look for you on Etsy! :)
posted by acm at 2:58 PM on November 28, 2017

Harried Potter
posted by obiwanwasabi at 5:04 PM on November 28, 2017

The surfaces are very lively and I like the cups with the sides pushed in...Dimple Pottery?
posted by bonobothegreat at 6:14 PM on November 28, 2017

When I think of buying pottery I never think of the name of the business. I always think of the name of the potter. The potters I follow all use either their names or their initials. They may have business names but I have no idea what they might be. You could look up your favorite artists and see what they do.
posted by cairnoflore at 6:58 PM on November 28, 2017 [2 favorites]

Hello, fellow potter! I strongly agree with others that just using your name is the best way to go, for all of the reasons that have been mentioned already. I wanted to add a link to this post on Design*Sponge -- it's an interview with a potter who recently rebranded and went from using a made-up business name to just using her own name.
posted by kitty teeth at 9:28 PM on November 28, 2017

First Name Last Name Clay Creations
posted by WeekendJen at 10:15 AM on December 1, 2017

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