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If you do not find the answer you need below, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are happy to answer any questions you have.

Product and Shipping Questions

All of our pottery is made in the USA! We make each piece start to finish at our campus located in Bedford, Virginia.

Every piece we make is lead-safe and cadmium-safe. This includes all of the clays, glazes, and decorations we use. All of our pottery meets or exceeds the standards set forth by California Proposition 65. Read more about our practices here

No animals are used or harmed in the making of our pottery. We’re big pet fans around here and value the lives of all creatures. We even have two lines of Pet Bowls for every taste!

We take the hands-on approach to everything we do. While we don’t individually throw every piece of pottery any more, each vessel we offer is handmade and comes from an original that was hand-thrown by one of us!

All of our hand-painted design collections — American Blue, Copper Clay, Cherry, Pearl, and Ivory — have a smooth and shiny finish to them. Our Go Green Earthware, Dogwood, Blackberry, Moss, Baltic, and Greystone have a textured, semi-matte finish.

We make every effort to ensure our designs and solid glazes match from year to year. Please remember that we make all of our own clay, glaze, and pottery by hand. Sometimes, there are slight changes in raw materials, which can cause slight color changes for solid glazes. Every piece with a design is painted free hand, and older pieces could have been painted by a different artist than today’s dishes, so some differences are to be expected.

All of our decorations and glazes actually bond with the pottery when it is fired. Sometimes, the decorations may be slightly raised from the surface or have a different texture than the glazed area. They will not peel or wear off over time.

Each of our patterns has been individually designed by our designers and artists — some wrap all the way around the forms, some have a hint of decoration on the underside, and some are decorated only on one side. The continuous patterns are Field of Iris, Blueberry, Cranberry, Lavender, and Tuscan Olive. Be sure to look at all the gallery images on our product pages before purchasing a design! 

All of our pottery has an unglazed foot on the bottom that can be slightly rough in texture. This unglazed area prevents the piece from bonding to the kiln shelves while being fired. While we  smooth the foot before shipping, some customers find that using very fine grit sandpaper helps even more. Also, the unglazed foot will wear down to a smoother surface with regular use. If you are concerned about your countertops, you may want to consider using a mat under your pottery.

While our pottery is oven-, dishwasher-, and microwave-safe, none of it can be used on the stovetop. Our Teapot is made to be used to steep and pour tea. The Brookline Skillet Plate is a fun tabletop addition, perfect for outdoor dining and entertaining.

No, as any drastic temperature change may cause cracking. It is best to let your pottery return to room temperature before placing it in a hot oven. Allow the pottery to cool after baking before placing it in the refrigerator or freezer.

We recommend using Bar Keepers Friend, a mild cleaner, to remove any marks left by flatware.

All Emerson Creek Pottery products are completely dishwasher-, microwave- and oven-safe. Our pottery is safe to use in the oven up to 450F, just be sure to avoid extreme temperature changes such as refrigerator to hot oven or vice versa. We strive to make beautiful, functional ceramics for every room in your home, and we think being dishwasher-, microwave-, and oven-safe is a big part of the functional aspect! 

We will contact you by email as quickly as possible if there is a delay or problem with your order. Please add our email address to your “safe” email addresses in your SPAM settings.

Your data is safe when you shop with Emerson Creek. Data between your web browser and our shopping cart is encrypted using 256-bit SSL Data Encryption. If you’d rather pay over the phone, please call our office at 1-540-297-7524.

We normally ship in-stock items within three days of receipt of the order. If the item is out of stock, we will email you with the estimated date it will be ready to ship.

Please keep in mind that we hand make and hand paint everything, and this can lead to a delay in shipping, especially with our personalized pottery items.

While we work to keep our stock full to anticipate new orders, there may be a product listed that is currently out of stock. If this happens, you will be notified immediately and be provided with an anticipated ship date.

We occasionally have sales throughout the year. The best way to stay in the loop is to sign up for our email newsletter — We promise to not be pests, and you’ll get a special coupon code for signing up!

Influenced by the energy of Early American cobalt decoration, owner Jim Leavitt founded Emerson Creek Pottery in 1977. With the next generation stepping in, we are proud to be a family owned and operated American business. 

Your satisfaction is important to us, and we’ll do everything we can to rectify any disappointing situation. We stand behind our pottery and will warranty our ceramic tabletop products for up to one year from purchase for proven defects in manufacture but not breakage from regular use. If you encounter issues with your pottery please contact us with details and we will help resolve the issue.

We don’t offer tours of our campus, but you can see all about our process in this video

You can also visit our Outlet Store in Bedford, Virginia, and find second-quality items as well as overstock and discontinued pieces! 

We don’t offer these classes ourselves, but we recommend looking for classes through your local parks and recreation department. 

Your mug is unique! Each mug we offer is hand-glazed by one of our skilled artisans. During the hand-glazing process, there remains a small unglazed spot on each mug where the maker’s hand has removed it from the glaze. After setting each freshly glazed mug down to dry, our artisans will add a dollop of glaze to the unglazed area, sealing that spot. The finished result? A small, raised area will occur on each of our mugs which may look like a hardened drip of glaze. From our hands to yours, this spot serves as a reminder that your mug was hand made with care. We hope seeing this signature spot warms your heart as you enjoy your favorite warm drink in an Emerson Creek Pottery mug.

We do! All orders over $150 within the lower 48 qualify for free shipping.

Emerson Creek Pottery ships via UPS Ground and USPS Priority Mail. We can also ship Next Day Air. However, special charges will apply. Please email us at or call us at 1-540-297-7524 if you want to ship Next Day Air.

Emerson Creek can ship our pottery to you in Canada, but please do be aware of potential duties and taxes.

If you wish to ship outside of North America, contact us before placing your order by email, at to discuss options.

If your address needs special instructions, please write them in the order notes section. 

Special instructions include things like leaving packages at a front or back door or letting us know that certain carriers do not deliver to your address. 

We usually ship in-stock items within three days of receipt of the order, note carriers do not pick up from our campus on Fridays – if you place your order Thursday night or over the weekend it will likely ship early the following week. If the item is out of stock, we will email you with the estimated date it will be ready to ship. Please keep in mind that we hand-make and hand-paint everything, which can lead to a delay in shipping, especially with our personalized pottery items.

UPS Ground: Transit time to the East Coast usually is 1-3 days. West Coast transit times are approximately one week. USPS Ground: Transit times are 2-8 days as posted on the USPS website.

Once we have prepared your order and are ready to ship, we will email you your tracking information.

You can also check here to look up your tracking number by order number.

While we take great care in packing our pottery for shipment, sometimes damages do occur. Please email us at with your order and contact information. Save the broken items, the box, and the packing materials. We will contact you as quickly as possible about replacing the damaged items.

Returns are accepted with prior approval only. NO returns will be accepted after ten days of receipt of shipment. If you need to make a return, please email us at or call us at 1-540-297-7524. Returns will be credited for pottery only, not freight.