View Full Version : Small hand turned glazed pot/cup at the local thrift. Can I safely drink from it?
12-13-2009, 03:20 AM
I got a very nice little pot the other day from the local thrift. It's about the size of a normal coffee "mug". It's evidently hand turned and signed on the bottom by the artist (no date). Although it has no handle I'd like to drink tea from it, but I am concerned that it might be lead glazed (I know little about pottery). What are the chances something like this is OK to drink from?
Here's two pics
Pic 1 (http://img193.imageshack.us/img193/3951/dcp8931.jpg)
Pic 2 (bottom (http://img94.imageshack.us/img94/3429/dcp8930.jpg))
12-13-2009, 06:04 AM
go to home depot and get a lead test kit, swipe it for lead. If it has no lead content in the glaze, it probably is reasonably safe to drink out of it. If you are that doubtful about it, use it as a pencil cup or plant a small cactus in it=)
12-13-2009, 06:30 AM
Agreed, it's all about what's in the glaze.
My inclination is to not use it for food or beverage, particularly anything warm, but if you can test it for safety then as long as it checks out you're OK.
12-13-2009, 06:47 AM
From my personal experience, every place I've taken pottery classes (3 schools so far) will only use food-safe glazes. The way the name is etched in the bottom of the piece suggests this was a class project rather than something done by a pro. So chances are you'd be OK.
But I wouldn't trust my health to such an assumption. If you can't test it definitively, use it as a penny-collector.
12-13-2009, 09:18 AM
It IS quite an attractive pot. However, you don't have any idea of how old it is...so you don't know if the class was held recently, or in 1940, so you don't know if they were as concerned with food safe glazes.
I'd use it as a decorative pot, myself.
12-13-2009, 10:46 AM
Isn't this the reason why people have husbands, kids and pets
12-14-2009, 10:35 PM
A number of years ago, I read a letter to the editor in "Mother Earth News"
by Bjo Trimble (of star trek fame), who pointed out that
pottery has only a finite amount of lead available to dissolve in solution.
Even if it is not safe now to use (And I would test it) It might be safe
If it were me, I would go to a arts and crafts place to see if they
could add a layer of clear glaze, just to seal everything in.:dubious:
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