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Pit Firing Workshops with Patricia Miller


Renowned ceramicist and featured Craft NI Directory maker, Patricia Millar is offering two 2-day Pit Firing workshops at her open studio in beautiful surrounds of the Ards Peninsula. Taking place May 20th & 21st, and June 24th & 25th.

Bring your own work or pre-order six wheel thrown pots. Learn how to prepare, pack a pit, fire and finish pit fired pottery. Take home your own unique pieces from the pit.

Day 1 typically lasts five hours (usually longer) and Patricia will demonstrate how to wrap the pieces in different materials and explain the typical effects likely to be achieved. You will be guided in preparing your own ready made work with a choice of organics. The group will be guided in packing and lighting the pit. A much needed break for lunch is provided after the pit is lit. The day finishes with the clamming up of the pit. Patricia will tend it throughout the night.

Day 2 the group returns for the big reveal! In this session the pit will be unpacked. Patricia will demonstrate how to clean and seal the work. You will be helped with your own pieces. Approximately three hours depending on the groups' items. Finishing with lunch.

Price: £140 per person (Add an extra £30 for six pre-ordered, wheel thrown, burnished and bisque fired pots).


  • At least 8 hours of pit fire tuition
  • Vegetarian lunches and unlimited tea breaks with cake
  • Pot preparation materials -includes a selection of seaweed, oxides, copper, wire wool, selection of organics
  • Fuel for Firing- seaweed, wood shavings, turf and hard wood logs
  • Sealing wax
  • Masks and gloves


Maximum 7 participants.

Some tips for successful pit firing-

  • Participants should come with work which has been bisque fired to 900oc.
  • Raku, stoneware or earthenware clay are all suitable.
  • If possible, pieces should be burnished at the leather hard stage which will enhance the pit fire patina.
  • Wheel thrown or hand built pots and sculptures are all suitable
  • Be aware that breakages are inevitable! A range of shapes and sizes will increase your chances of success. Flat pieces usually break...
  • The pit measures 3' x 4' x 4'
To find out more and book in, follow the weblink below.


Where: Strangfjord Open Studio
60 Dunover Road
Co Down
BT22 2LE