Beautifully handcrafted in Staffordshire

The Story of ‘Gluggle Jug’

As your Gluggle Jug sits in pride of place in your home, have you ever wondered where this fish-shaped delight started its life?

Handcrafted in the UK at Wade Ceramics, a factory in the heart of Stoke-on-Trent (better known as The Potteries), the Gluggle Jug found first began its journey in Staffordshire over 100 years ago. Losing itself slightly along the way (with a few fakes and frauds popping up too), Wade Ceramics brought back to its place of origin in 2002 and the range has been growing in sizes, colours and popularity ever since.

So, what actually happens? The Operations Director at Wade has given us the low-down…

1. Mouldmaking

Multi part moulds are made from plaster, which are used in the slip casting process to form the original clay Gluggle Jug shape

2. Clay preparation

Specific, vegan and partly recycled clay materials are blended together with water to form a liquid casting slip

3. Casting

Liquid slip is poured into the plaster mould and left for a specific period of time to set. Water is absorbed into the plaster and a clay skin is formed into the shape of the Gluggle jug. Excess slip is removed from the mould and the residual clay piece is allowed to harden before being removed from the mould revealing the beautiful and intricate shaping of the jug

4. Fettling

The seams left by the moulding process are removed by hand using a combination of specialised fettling knives and wet sponging in an intricate process. Following this procedure, the Gluggle Jug is ready to be fired

5. Biscuit firing

The finished clay items are placed into a kiln and fired to 980 degrees. During firing process, the item contracts as water is driven from the body and the chemical reaction between the various clay materials renders the item into a hard durable biscuit item.

Following the biscuit firing process all items are inspected to ensure there are no defects present, any items are rejected and recycled.

6. Dipping

Fresh from the kiln, the biscuit items are immersed into a water based glass frit of varying colours which determines the final colouring of your chosen jug as it is absorbed onto the surface of each piece. This is a skilled process done by hand by highly qualified individuals. Once dried the items are ready for the second firing process called the ‘glost firing’.

7. Glost firing

The dipped Gluggle jugs are placed into a kiln and fired to a temperature of 1090 degrees. During the firing process the glass frit liquifies and forms a permanent glossy finish onto the Gluggle Jug body, inside and out.

All products are given a final inspection to ensure they are free from imperfections, all defective pieces are rejected, recycled or sold on as seconds at a reduced cost.

8. Packing

Finished items are then hand packed into bespoke boxes ready to be delivered to the customer.

Arriving at your front door perfectly packed and ready to use in whichever way you desire, it is clear to see why these special gurgling jugs are adored across the world. To find out where your nearest stockist or to order online click here, and to find out more about the home of The Original Gluggle Jug, Wade Ceramics, click here.


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