Rachid Pottery

Rachid’s family have been making traditional Fez style pottery for three generations. They were the first factory to open in the area when the industry moved from the medina 13 years ago. The soft, dove-grey clay is sourced from rivers near Sidi Harazem (about 7km from Fez). It arrives in big blocks and is pounded underfoot in small pits before being hand crafted, moulded and dried inside for 3-4 days. It is then dried outside for another 2-3 days. It’s important no water is left in the ceramics or they will break in kiln. The first firing, to strengthen the pot is at 1200 degrees in a gas kiln (the olive pits that fired the kilns in the old days rather less romantically belched out tonnes of thick black smoke) and takes 12 hours, after which a base white glaze is applied giving the ceramics their distinctive oyster-shell  finish, then patterns are hand drawn on the glaze and they are fired again for 8 hours at 950 degrees. The most traditional of Fez glazes is cobalt blue, but a small range of other, mineral-based colours are blue, white, black, red, yellow, green, brown (new colours span to turquoise, orange, teal), making seven in total are a nod to the steps needed to make it to heaven. Our collection draws on three of the city’s most traditional designs: the tomato flower, bumble bee stripes, Berber tattoos and embroidery.