Meet Nicole Aquillano: Modern + Timeless Hand-Etched Porcelain from Boston

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  • By Susannah
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Meet Nicole Aquillano: Modern + Timeless Hand-Etched Porcelain from Boston

It is not absolutely *necessary* that your dishware simultaneously evoke a feeling of fresh, simple, modern beauty and an ineffable nostalgia for a classic bygone era (the exact specifics of which remain gloriously fuzz-toned in the inexact way of feelings) but ISN'T IT NICE WHEN IT DOES??

Boston-based engineer-turned-ceramicist Nicole Aquillano has a way with porcelain. Every simple, gorgeous piece is handmade in Nicole's studio from start to finish—from mixing the all-natural porcelain clay to refining the alchemy of her glazes and pigments, from slipcasting the iconic shapes to the painstaking process of hand etching the lines and applying the pigments, from glazing to firing, each step is a love labor. As she says, "I draw subtle narratives on functional work to elicit memories of times past.  I create a story you can hold in your hand forever." SWOON.

 

 

The resulting exquisite, pared-down porcelain pieces remind us of scrimshaw, and with good reason: like a storm-tossed sailor carving the dreams of her journey into ivory, Nicole etches the subtle embellishments on each piece of bone-colored porcelain by hand, fills them with rich, inky, custom-blended pigment—it reads a deep indigo blue in some lights, and black in others—applies a signature hand-mixed glaze, and fires them twice. The high temperature of the kiln combined with a clear glaze overlay slightly blurs the drawing, much like a faded memory.

 

 

The luminous palette of the slipcast porcelain is simply the natural color of the hand-mixed clay itself and the double high-heat firing means that these pieces are (truly) as sturdy as they are stunning. Who said porcelain was fussy? These diamond-hard pieces are good to go in the microwave, fridge, or dishwasher. We think we've found our new everyday dishes.

 

See the whole (glorious) line here.

 

 

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