Pottery Courses


Pottery Courses (May 2018 onwards)

Details of our regular classes are shown below.  Please note we also offer we offer a developing programme of weekend and one-off workshops – follow this link to go to our “Pottery Workshops” page – click here.

How to book your course:   To book and pay please click on the preferred course link below – if you have a gift voucher please see bottom of page for further instructions. By booking on a course you are confirming that you have read and agree to our payment terms and conditions, cancellation, refunds and privacy policy set out at the bottom of the page.

Important:  there is an additional charge of £2 for 1lb weight of clay for kiln firing and glazing for all pottery courses.

An hour tutor-led session, for absolute beginners to intermediate learners to experiment and have fun throwing on the wheel.  Also available to students on one of our courses who just want some more time to practice.


Please note: pieces created in this session are recycled and not fired – this session is just to have a fun go on the wheel!

No booking needed – turn up and pay on the day.  Places are limited and cannot be reserved so please turn up early to ensure your place.

Tuesdays and Thursdays drop-in sessions
5.30 pm – 6.30 pm
Cost: £12 per session (cash only please)

Create a pot that tells a story.  Using wet slab techniques to build the form, images or freehand drawing and colourful under glazes express a story or verse in 3D!

A course for all levels of ability from the complete beginner to the experienced potter.

1:30 – 3:30 pm
6th June – 27th June 2018 (4 weeks)

CERAMIC GARDEN – NEW COURSE with Charlotte Berry and Mary Else

A course for all levels of ability from the complete beginner to the experienced potter you will be introduced to a variety of hand building and decorative techniques to create items that will enhance your summer garden.

Allow nature to dictate both form and function in this new course at the Art House taking inspiration from the garden for the garden.  Each participant will complete a birdbath to bring much needed water to birds and insects and will then choose to make other items such as sculptural ceramic seed heads, mobiles, bird feeders and planters.

Skills: pinch pottery, coil building, and slab building. Decorative techniques will include the use of coloured slips, impressing, incising and embellishing the unfired clay to create texture and interest and following bisque firing, the use of under-glaze and glaze to complete your project.

2.00 – 4.00pm
13th June – 11th July 2018 (5 weeks)

This short course will allow you to choose two projects from three options available:

  • Making a stylised human head/bust – this can be in your own personal style or maybe a more abstract piece of work?
  • Making an animal sculpture (complex coiling and modelling).
  • Designing and making a lidded pot with a small animal figure.


The pieces will be decorated using  a combination of slips, oxides and glazes.

This course is excellent for students wanting a more in-depth introduction to sculpture or to improve on their modelling and texturing skills.

6:30 pm – 9:00 pm (please note these are 2.5 hour sessions)
7th June – 19th July 2018 (7 sessions).
Cost:  £125
BOOK HERE! (Click to see number of places remaining)

Pottery, Art HouseWHEEL SATURDAY (WHEEL I & WHEEL II) – with Mick Randle  NEW DATES
A mixed class for complete beginners and improvers. More advanced students will be throwing larger amounts of clay and completing more advanced forms.  The classes will run as longer 3 hour teaching sessions over a 6-week period.

“I really enjoyed the course, it was brilliantly run and we were introduced to the throwing right away which was great.”

“A great way to unwind, made better by the expert guidance of the tutor”. 

This is a repeatable course and is encouraged for those who would simply like more practice with tuition.

10:00 – 1:00 p.m.
2nd June – 7th July 2018 (6 weeks)
Cost:  £144
BOOK HERE!  (Click to see number of places remaining)

A full year course (3 terms that follow the academic year, each term consisting of 12 weeks) designed for the student who wants an extended class in which a huge range of topics, skills and techniques are explored over an extended period of time. Students will learn the skills covered in: Introduction to Ceramics (Evening Pottery); Sculpture & Ceramics II; and the Surfaces and Design course, plus some incorporation of throwing on the wheel and development of independent projects with close tuition from their tutor.

At the conclusion, students will have had the opportunity to develop all the core/essential skills covered in the range of our courses and be able to transition smoothly into our Open Studio.

“I enjoyed every moment of the new class and I have gained valuable new skills and experience. The Open Studio will allow me to take it further and to be more creative.”

Next year-long course will start in September 2018.


Handbuilding, Art House SheffieldEVENING POTTERY 
For the complete beginner, this course explores the basics of hand-built ceramics through a variety of techniques and intricate decorating practices.

You will learn to manipulate clay to come away with several beautiful and personal hand-formed pieces reflecting an understanding of the basic elements of pottery and a foundation of craftsmanship to explore further in later classes.

As well as being a good starting point for working with clay, this course is an excellent introduction for those interested in exploring sculptural techniques and for throwers interested in improving their carving and alteration skills.

“Everything you need for an induction to ceramics, hand building and glazing. Cannot recommend it enough! “

Please note this course uses a variety of hand-building techniques – but does not include the use of a pottery wheel.

6:30 – 9:00 pm (2.5 hour sessions)
1st May – 10th July 2018 (10 sessions) – (break for Whitsun week 28th May – 1st June).
Cost:  £192
BOOK HERE! (Click to see number of places remaining) 

Same content as the evening pottery class (above) – a chance to learn all the basics of hand-building techniques in 12 weeks.

Repeatable course – after completing the course once you have the opportunity to work on your own projects with the tutor.

“I enjoyed very much to be able to be encouraged to be creative. My friends loved the work I did.”

10:00 am – 12:00 pm
25th April – 18th July 2018 (12 sessions) – break for Whitsun week 28th May – 1st June.
Cost: £162
BOOK HERE!  (Click to see number of places remaining)

10:00 am – 12:00 pm
27th April – 20th July 2018 (12 sessions) – break for Whitsun week 28th May – 1st June.
Cost: £162
BOOK HERE!  (Click to see number of places remaining)


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Surface decoration (daytime course) – NEW COURSE
Learn how to use coloured slips, oxides and under glaze colours with confidence.  Improve your knowledge and application of techniques to get the effect you want.  Best suited to potters who have already some experience and want to learn more about surface decoration.

You will be shown:
• Various slip application techniques scraffito, inlay, incised, stencil and wax resist.
• How oxides and under glazes can be applied and work with other mediums.
• How to combine surface decoration to their best effect.

You will be given the opportunity to:
• Make a selection of tiles with all the decorative techniques.
• And at least one completed hand built piece using slips oxides and under glazes.

1.00 pm – 3.00 pm
26th April – 7th June 2018 (6 weeks)
Cost:  £80

leavesUse of slips
This block of five sessions on achieving bright colours on pottery with the use of decorating slips.  The course will look at the makeup of decorating slips, ideal temperatures for best results, and the following application techniques: dipping, scraffito, slip inlay, sponging and using paper resists.


New September dates to follow

Glaze TechnologyUse of oxides and underglazes
This short course looks at applying some of the most basic materials from which pottery colours come from. Students will learn the makeup and different applications of oxides and underglazes, utilising fine brushwork, sponge application of watered down washes, and observing how these interact with glazes.

Students will produce two pieces of work on the course plus tester pieces.

New September dates to follow

Use of glazes
This short block explores both the chemistry and the breadth of application techniques using stoneware glazes. Students will learn the differences between glossy, satin, and dry/matt glazes and ideal means of applying these to pottery and sculpture.


Students will produce two pieces of work on the course plus tester pieces.

7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
5th June – 3rd July 2018 (5 sessions)
Cost: £70

RAKU ~ with Mike Scown
This 4-week course takes you through the techniques of Raku as you decorate and participate in the firing of unique handmade pieces.  The cost of the course includes four pots for decoration – additional pots are available for £5 each.
Week 1 – History of Raku, ‘Naked Raku’ decorating & firing.
Week 2 – Mixing and applying glazes, masking tape resist.
Week 3 – Horse hair decoration or bring your own combustibles.
Week 4 –  Glazing & copper matte alcohol reduction.

“A brilliant experience- fantastic helpful tutor, well organised & a great range of techniques tried.”

Please note the sessions will be run in the outside courtyard area bring some warm clothes!

7.00 pm – 9.00 pm
23rd April – 21st May 2018 (4 sessions) – break for bank holiday 7th May
Cost: £70


This course focuses on learning the core skills of throwing on a wheel.  Students will be taught basic pulling of handles and attaching them to the cylinders they have made to produce an aesthetically pleasing piece.

It is recommended that people wishing to continue to improve their throwing technique move into the “Wheel II” courses rather than repeating this course.

“Its been great to learn a completely new skill in a relaxed atmosphere. Everyone is really friendly and helpful.”

“Much better than trying to learn off YouTube!”

7.00 pm – 9.00 pm
24th April – 17th July 2018 (12 sessions) – half-term break Monday 28th May – Friday 1st June.
Cost: £192

7.00 pm – 9.00 pm
2nd May – 25th July 2018 (12 sessions) – half-term break Monday 28th May – Friday 1st June.
Cost: £192
BOOK HERE! (Click to see number of places remaining)

7.00 pm – 9.00 pm
26th April – 19th July 2018 (12 sessions) – half-term break Monday 28th May – Friday 1st June.
Cost: £192
BOOK HERE! (Click to see number of places remaining)

Wheel II is for students who are competent in the fundamentals of throwing (covered in Wheel I): throwing uniform cylinders, bowls, turning and attaching handles. Students will progress into throwing larger amounts of clay, lidded containers vases and other more advanced forms.  Students will learn to apply various slip and chattering effects to finish their work, as well as basic glazing techniques. The pace and specific techniques covered will vary slightly according to the collective and individual skill levels comprising each class.

This is a repeatable course and allows students to develop their skills and learn new techniques.


7.00 pm – 9.00 pm
3rd May – 26th July (12 sessions) – half-term break Monday 28th May – Friday 1st June.
Cost: £192
BOOK HERE! (Click to see number of places remaining)

Learn wheel throwing for the complete beginner and improver. Beginners will be learning the basics of producing wheel thrown pieces while creating mugs and bowls. Students wanting further improvement will start working with larger amounts of clay and be shown advanced techniques for forming lidded containers, bottles, and teapots.

Please note that this is a mixed class and the skill levels your classmates will vary.

This is a repeatable course and is encouraged for those who would simply like more practice with tuition.

10.30 – 12.30 pm
3rd May-26th July 2018 (12 sessions) – half-term break Monday 28th May – Friday 1st June.
Cost: £162

1.00 pm – 3.00 pm
27th April – 20th July 2018 (12 sessions) –  half-term break Monday 28th May – Friday 1st June.
Cost: £162
BOOK HERE! (Click to see number of places remaining)

Payments: All courses or workshops must be fully paid in advance and all major cheques, cash and credit/debit cards are acceptable methods of payment. To pay by cheque please click here to download a booking form and send back with a cheque made payable to “St Matthews House Ltd”.  You can also drop in Monday-Friday from 11am-3pm to pay in person.

Cancellation and refunds: If you wish to cancel your place on a course you must do so at least 14 days before the course starts in order to receive a full refund. Cancellation must be made in writing or email. If you require a refund we will charge £15 administrative fee. Alternatively you may transfer your booking to another course free of charge.

If you cancel your place less than 14 days before your course starts, you will only receive a refund of 50% course fee (or 50% of the fee value to transfer to an alternative course).  If you require a refund we will charge £15 administrative fee or you can transfer your booking to another course free of charge.

After a course begins we do not offer any refund unless in exceptional circumstances.

If we have to cancel a course for any reason, then you will receive a full refund with no administrative fee deducted.

If you have an Art House gift voucher please follow the instructions below:

• Pay the full price of the course online.
• Email us prior to the course date to tell us you have used a voucher.
• Bring the voucher with you on the day to receive your cash back.

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