Putting Kelantan-made pottery on the map

Young artisan: Nur Syazwani showing ceramic burners made at her workshop in Kampung Bunut Payong, Kota Baru — Bernama

KOTA BARU: Growing up, Nur Syazwani Izyan Jefridin, 31, often watched her father, Jefridin Mat, 59, produce clay products beneath their kampung house.

That’s when she found her passion for pottery and ceramics.

“After completing my diploma in 2013, I decided to focus full time in this field.

“Currently, (my company) Belipot Craft Ceramic produces about 80 products, including door gifts for weddings such as egg containers, money pots as well as decorative items such as vases and lamps.

“Our most popular item is the ceramic burner,” she told Bernama when met at Kampung Bunut Payong here.

Nur Syazwani, or Onie as she is fondly known, said the main raw material, terracotta clay, is obtained from around Kota Baru and the ceramics are produced in a workshop near her family’s residence.

The Diploma in Management holder from Management and Science University (MSU) Kota Baru said the intricate process of producing clay-based products requires several stages, starting with liquid clay being poured into moulds.

She said the process will be repeated several times according to the desired thickness.

“After a few hours, the product will be removed from the mould and the joining and finishing process will be done.

“The product will dry after two or three days.

“The dry products will be arranged and then fired in a kiln for seven hours at 950°C.

“On average, each product will take four days to complete,” said Nur Syazwani, who is assisted by a worker.

She added that Belipot Craft Ceramic produces more than 2,000 products using about 500kg of clay per month, with prices ranging from RM1.50 to RM85 depending on the size and type of product.

She said 90% of the products are sold online and the rest through their participation in handicraft programmes.

“We also have customers who purchase directly from our workshop,” she said.

Nur Syazwani said many are still unaware of made-in-Kelantan ceramic products.

“We were once asked to produce pottery products such as ‘labu sayong’ – which originates from Perak – but we did not do it because we wanted Belipot Craft Ceramic to have its own identity.

“Every product produced here is based on my ideas and also customers’ requests,” she added. — Bernama

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