Briggs Shore, Briggs Shore Ceramics, Briggs Shore Coupeville, Briggs Shore Pottery, Ceramics Center in Cedar Rapids Iowa, Cook on Clay, Cook on Clay Whidbey, Jan McGregor Studio, Little Red Hen Bakery Coupeville, Penn Cove Pottery, Penn Cove Pottery Whidbey, The Little Red Hen Bakery
Accompanying this picture of #17 Front St. Briggs Shore posted these words on the Briggs Shore Ceramics facebook page on December 31st 2019: “This is the day. This is the place. Tonight I get the keys to my very own pottery studio. From this tiny building on this blustery and rainy evening, I will begin to fully live my dream. Happy New Year everyone. May 2020 bring us every good thing we hope for.” – Briggs Shore New Year’s Eve 2020.
After signing the lease for 17 Front St. and getting the keys, it took a couple months to get moved in and set up. Excited, Briggs opened for a weekend in early March before the state shut-down of non-essential businesses in Washington was declared. Since that time she has been staying busy doing studio work, and beefing up her online store to help manage the shut down time.
Born and raised in Iowa, Briggs enjoyed working in pottery throughout her high school years. After high school she pursued degrees in Interior Design and Integrated Studio Art at Iowa State University, graduating in 2007.
After getting her degrees Briggs worked and looked at pottery as a continuing hobby. Then a friend promoted her participate in a ‘Pop-Up Craft Show’ in 2015 and the direction of her life and career changed. Briggs decided to become a professional potter (and waitress to pay the bills).
Not one to let time waste Briggs dove full bore into life as a potter. She became resident artist in pottery at the Ceramics Center in Cedar Rapids Iowa from January thru April 2016, moved to Whidbey in July 2016 to take up as a Studio Assistant at Cook on Clay in Coupeville and then became artist in residence at Penn Cove Pottery where she continues to be represented. Also a member of Whidbey Working Artists, in just 5 years after that ‘Pop-Up Craft Show’ changed her course Briggs has achieved her dream to have her own studio. We’re lucky it’s right here in Coupeville on Front St.!
Landing in Coupeville is part and parcel to effort, opportunity and a draw to creative community for Briggs. We’re not surprised Whidbey won out as a home and the place to bring a dream to fruition.
“There’s a really vibrant art community on Whidbey I feel really fortunate to be a part of it. I’m looking forward to being a place where people can get an up-close view of how pottery is made, and am excited to bring more art into downtown Coupeville.” – Briggs Shore
The Briggs Shore ceramics ‘style’ is simple, sleek and functional. She describes her style as Midcentury Modern, Scandinavian, and Contemporary West Coast. Using her background in design her ‘instinct’ in the studio is to make functional dishes. She marks herself as a proponent of simple and modern handmade ceramics. All her work is durable enough to use every day. They are dishwasher and microwave safe “just like any ceramic dishes you may have in your home now”.
“I’m influenced by my professional training and my love of Scandinavian design. It’s important to me to create pieces that are a joy to hold and use and will make parts of your day a little more special.” – Briggs Shore
It’s a delight to have a pottery studio and potter living on Front St. again. For many years Jan McGregor of Jan McGregor Studio lived and threw pottery in her building at #19 Front St. (next door to where Briggs is now). Since finishing her dream home and studio nearby several years ago, Jan now sells fine Japanese antiques out of her building and no longer throws. The antiques are a love Jan acquired while studying pottery under a master in Japan early in her ceramics career. Image Credit: Jan McGregor Studio
Some things change in Coupeville but (always) parts of it come back around to be the same. We have a potter living and throwing on Front St.
We welcome Briggs to town and look forward to the day we can all flood Front St. to enjoy her studio and the rest of our wonderful Front St. retail businesses forced to close right now.
As a bonus Briggs and her fiancé Patrick (head baker at Coupeville’s Little Red Hen Bakery) live in the apartment above her ceramics studio and store. Nothing better than a quick commute and being part of our small but mighty waterfront. Short walk to work and a vibrant work community for both of them.
We have a lot to be thankful for in Coupeville and having a new business is a just one of those things. For a small town of small businesses (who work hard to be solid and whole heartedly serve) Coupeville is doing pretty well.
Located in #17 Front St. Briggs Shore Ceramics is in a circa 1909 building built by Jacob Straub, a blacksmith by trade, for the law office of Judge Lester Still . The building has seen many businesses in the 111 years since Judge Still and we’re thrilled to see Briggs Shore Pottery settle in and bring a new era to this sweet buildings! The building is owned by Joel and Lorene Norris, who also own Kapaws Iskreme and 21 Front St.