The ceramic mug use one every day but how are they made? First the raw material is fed into a grinder and pulverized into smaller more manageable clay powder. The clay powder is combined with quartz feldspar and water in a mixer for 15 hours. The refining process continues as the clay slurry is fed into the moulding tubes and cast into long clay logs which are cut into specific portions. The portions are placed into a single use mould and formed into the shape of your mug.
Once dried, the cup is removed from the mould by hand and is ready for the next step. The mug handles have been created in a similar fashion to the body of the mug. Once they’ve dried and been released from their own moulds, the handles are dipped in a mixture of the clay and water called slip, which acts like a glue. Then it’s time for some detail work. A technician carefully removes any excess clay or rough edges, rinses off any dust or debris and gives the mug the perfect smooth finish.
Now it’s time for the mugs to obtain their colour and trademark ceramic glaze. Some mugs are dipped into a single coloured glaze. The edges are padded and they’re ready for the next step. Other mugs require a bit more flair, such as a specially painted rim or a different coloured interior and exterior. All the mugs are hand dipped and painted to ensure quality coating every time. The mugs are set aside for at least 12 hours in order for them to completely dry before moving on to the ovens.
Now it’s time to bake them which will cause them to harden permanently. Rows and rows of mugs are placed onto a conveyor which will carry them through the oven and out the other side. The standard oven temp is around 2200 degrees Fahrenheit. Then the mugs are now finished and they look great! The shipping department wraps them in plastic boxes them up and ship them out to some lucky customers all over the world. Some mugs will remain blank and some will have a logo or text printed on them, transforming them into branding superstars. So the next time you’re enjoying a cup of coffee, tea or cocoa, take a minute to glance down and appreciate all the hard work and craftsmanship that went into your favourite mug!