Wesleyan Potters, Inc. is a non-profit school and cooperative guild founded in 1948 to promote the learning and development of skills in crafts.
Not just a pottery studio, Wesleyan Potters offers classes in three different media: weaving, metalsmithing and ceramics. We also offer Youth Pottery, Jewelry, Weaving and Sewing classes for children ranging from grade school up to high school. Additionally, we offer a wide variety of workshops which feature demonstrations and hands-on experiences with nationally known craftspeople.
Our classes are typically 9 weeks long and sessions are offered year-round in Winter (Jan-Feb), Spring (Mar-May), Summer (Jun-July) and Fall (Sept-Oct). Our well-qualified instructors design classes to accommodate all levels of experience and skill.
With support from the Connecticut Office of the Arts, which also receives funding from the National Endowment of the Arts, a federal agency.
Our vintage factory building boasts approximately 9,000 square feet of studio space. Our house next door provides an additional 1100 square feet of space for workshops, meeting space, as well a reference library and photo studio for documenting work. AC is provided throughout our light and airy workspaces.
Our pottery program currently serves 144 students in nine classes. Our pottery studio is equipped with 18 pottery wheels, 2 slab rollers, 2 extruders, 2 glazing booths, and generous working space and tools for Handbuilding. We have two gas kilns, 7 electric kilns for bisqueware, a raku kiln and a soda kiln. Our students’ work is high-fired to cone 10.
Metalsmithing & Jewelry
Wesleyan Potters’ metalsmithing department is a state-of-the-art studio containing a wide variety of equipment and tools to accomplish soldering, forming, cold connections, stone setting, enameling, polishing and sawing metal sheet and wire.
The jewelry studio contains 3 soldering stations, 3 kilns for enamel and precious metal clay (PMC), grinding and polishing stations, a bench shear, two flex shaft stations, a Bonny Doon hydraulic press and a rolling mill. There are also forming stakes as well as many hand tools for sawing, forming, fabrication and creating texture on metal.
Materials used range from sterling silver, copper, brass and nu-gold in both sheet and wire form.
Items created by students range from jewelry to decorative items such as wall art and three-dimensional objects.
Many different techniques are taught by instructors during regularly offered classes as well as special focus workshops throughout the year.
Our large weaving studio upstairs is equipped with 30 looms from various manufacturers—LeClerc, Macomber, Harrisville, Schacht—which allows a student to try different styles of looms before buying a loom of their own. Looms range from 4 shaft to 12 shaft, with weaving widths of 24 – 48”.
There is an extensive library of books and magazines to inspire students in their selection of projects.