Calming colors and feel-good textures make Brooke Waters Pottery blissfully collectible.
We all have a cabinet full of them: heart-shaped pots, turkey-shaped cheese trays, cookie platters that look like Christmas trees. Unlike those overtly themed entertaining pieces, each handcrafted dish by Brooke Waters Pottery is meant to bring joy to countless moments around the table—from planned dinner parties to spontaneous tea parties.
Timeless hues and designs. Fresh ombres and fun piping. Easy, effortless elegance is served.
“Because I love to entertain, I focus on beautiful yet practical pieces that are useful in the kitchen and for parties. From serving bowls to teapots, Brooke Waters Pottery has something for everyone,” says Brooke Dersch, the hands behind the throwing wheel. “I’ve always looked for creative outlets, and hosting is something I really enjoy doing . . . [one day], I was in need of some cupcake stands. Instead of buying some, I thought, ‘I’ll make them.’ I tend to be that type of person.”
It wasn’t until her last year of college that the Oregon native found—and fell in love with—pottery. “I was instantly hooked on the medium. Feeling the clay was just really exciting and a lot of fun to work with,” says Dersch, who produces all of her work out of her airy and bright Upstate home studio.
“At first, I was only selling to friends and family, doing small shows out of my apartment. It went so well that I just kind of kept going,” laughs Dersch, whose business has only continued to grow as her style evolves. “My work morphs each year depending on what I’m into. The color gradients in my Cascade line remind me of my childhood in Oregon. [More recently], my Henna mug line is inspired by a henna tattoo that I got one summer and absolutely loved the texture of—I wanted to create that same vibe on a mug. Now, I’m enjoying playing with new clay bodies like black slip porcelain and just seeing where it leads me.”
Even as her aesthetics develop, the enduring sensibilities that make the potter’s work instantly recognizable never change. “It’s minimalistic while still bringing in neutral colors. I use a lot of my white dinnerware in my own home, and it’s something that works every year, and I never grow tired of. Timeless, clean lines is what I go for—something that isn’t going to go easily out of style.”
One of Dersch’s favorite things is hearing how collectors plan to use and love her work. “For instance, I have a platter that people like using for Thanksgiving turkeys. They’ll tell me what they’re planning to cook and serve, and that’s always really cool.”