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Ceramic shop in Brecksville reshaping business amid pandemic, offering socially-distanced pottery classes

Kiln pottery Brecksville
Posted at 4:29 PM, Feb 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-14 09:17:18-05

BRECKSVILLE, Ohio — There’s just something special about making things with your hands.

Homemade ceramics are everywhere these days and they offer a temporary antidote to the electronics that dominate our technology filled lives.

“It’s satisfying. You start with nothing and then you make something out of it,” said Caleb Zouhary, owner of The Kiln, a ceramics shop located in Brecksville.

Zouhary and The Kiln have weathered the COVID-19 storm and come out on the other side. In an industry that works with clay, being adaptable and workable is a common trick of the trade.

“There was a lot of pivoting. Every week, there was a new thing when we first started,” Zouhary said. “There were new rules that were coming up all the time. Different ways we had to change things.”

At the height of the pandemic last March, the business made the pivot to and offered take-home ceramic kits available for pickup or delivery.

“Everyone’s been stuck at home. They want something fun they can do with their family and they want to feel safe when they’re doing that,” Zouhary said.

For the time being, classes are limited in size and it’s recommended to call ahead to set up a reservation.

Under normal circumstances, The Kiln could handle anywhere from five to seven people in a group setting. Now, they limit the classes to couples or small groups of about three or four people.

Masks and social distancing are required inside the studio, but the class is still a hands-on way to learn how to mold your own mug or bowl. The Kiln also offers finished products that you can purchase and paint for yourself.

“We’re here to teach people. So, if they’ve never touched clay before in their life. They can come in here and make a piece,” Zouhary said. “We want you to make something nice, but we don’t want you to be pulling your hair out while you’re doing it.”