Pottery by P. Lyn Middleton

Photographs by P Lyn Middleton & Orlando Soria


Dear Travel Diary,

It’s been a whirlwind year so far, which has left little time for writing (sorry!) but I had a magical discovery over the weekend that I just can’t keep to myself. I went to Ojai with my boyfriend and some of his homies and one of the first shops we wandered into was the wonderful studio of P Lyn Middleton, a ceramicist who makes the most amazing avant pottery and runs P Space Pottery on Ojai Avenue.

Growing up, my best friend’s mother was a potter who made (and makes) the most amazing, innovative pieces. She was German, educated at fancy German design school, and influenced by Japanese minimalism and modern sculpture. I loved going to her house because everything in it was considered; she has an excitement for objects and filled her home with beautiful art, pottery, and natural artifacts that other people might look past but she found beautiful. There was always something exciting about her house because I always knew there would be a discovery. “I never noticed how beautiful pinecones are!” or “How sculptural and amazing are persimmons?”

Susanne French, the ceramic artist I’m talking about, has a soul sister in Ojai. Walking into P Lyn Middleton’s shop felt a little bit like walking into Susanne’s house, where I spent a lot of time every summer. There were beautiful things eveywhere, pottery adorned with natural objects and textiles.

Stylists love pottery because it’s original art and immediately gives a space a sense of uniqueness that cannot be replicated. Each piece P Lyn makes has a presence because its form cannot be replicated exactly. Additionally, the rough organic finish and the earthy hand-fired glazes give these pieces a warmth that can bring life into a room. Okay, I’ll stop losing my mind over pottery. To make a long story short, I’m hugely into it, and I think it’s often maligned as “craft” (what’s wrong with that anyway?) or someone’s charming hobby. It’s not. It’s beautiful and I think a great investment in something that is both practical and a piece of one-of-a-kind art that no one else has.


P Lyn’s store is somehow both maximal and minimal at the same time. I loved the plywood display and how the pieces were stacked and merchandised all over.


I snagged three of these lovely white slab plates ($30 each). I can’t wait to use them to serve appetizers at a dinner party and impress my guests so much that their eyeballs explode violently from their heads.

handmade-pottery-21I also snagged this bowl for $60. Some of the people I was shopping with thought this was expensive, but if you’ve shopped for handmade pieces before you know this is about $300 below average for a piece like this.

handmade-pottery-20I am obsessed with that organic white bowl with the rectangle in the middle but I couldn’t afford it ($200). It’s one of those things I’m going to have nightmares about because I wanted it so badly but perhaps someday I can find the person who ends up with it and murder them and steal it back from them. It reminds me of the incredible Calvin Klein Spring/Summer 2014 men’s collection which featured these amazing organic vs. graphic cloud shirts/sweatershirts. I also couldn’t afford those so I pretty much hate my whole life.

handmade-pottery-18I bought this live-edge bowl for $100, I couldn’t resist. The graphic glaze thrills and delights me.


Everyone should use dried weeds to decorate their houses. Forever. All the time.

handmade-potttery-22You can see P Lyn’s influences all over her shop. River rocks, twigs, tumbleweeds. All these natural elements provide the basis of her visual vocabulary. I hate myself that I just said “visual vocabulary,” but you know what I mean. Right? Guys? Is anyone still reading? WHY AM I WRITING SO MUCH IT’S JUST POTTERY???

handmade-pottery-4Girl, a pomegranate never looked so good!

handmade-pottery-3I wanted this, but I didn’t buy it because I would be bankrupt if I did. Another reason why my life is stupid and meaningless.


handmade-pottery-19Literally even the crappy crumpled up used tissue paper in P Lyn’s store looked awesome.


handmade-pottery-15Love this rough edge white bowl, accessorized with airplants (which I’m really good at killing, btw).


If you’d like to visit P Lyn Middleton’s wonderland, it’s located at 928 East Ojai Avenue, Ojai, California 93023. The address is one the door’s window, which reflects onto the floor depending what time of day you’re there. So you should probably plan on staying there all day long, just so you don’t miss anything. Also, when you’re there please buy me that white rectangle Calvin Klein bowl.


12 thoughts on “Pottery by P. Lyn Middleton

  1. I have a few of her pieces I picked up a years ago at a pop-up sale in an architect’s office in LA. I too could not resist. I wanted to buy everything! And I couldn’t agree with your more, absolutely amazing and unique pieces. Never been to her shop though, what a beautiful space. Thank for sharing!

  2. I’m reminded of Olympia Dukakis in “Moonstruck,” when she gets up from the table & shouts at her husband, “Your life is NOT built on nothing!” In response to your “meaningless” comment above. Anyway, I love all this stuff! I am equally parts glad & upset I cannot possibly squeeze more objet into my home. Until this weekend, when I make my guest appearances at local thrift shops.

    What’s this about boyfriend though? Will this homme-osexual distract you from blogging & designing?? 😉

  3. No, I totally get it. Her stuff looks great: so tactile and so ‘natural’, yet so artfully filtered, like it’s the epitome of those warm squishy feelings one gets when one sees something perfect in nature, and you want to fix it in time and space, so you don’t forget it – and a photo just doesn’t do justice to it, because it’s only two dimensional.

    I’ve had too much red wine.

  4. Thanks, Everyone for your wonderful comments. And feistycuffs71, no, just the right amount of wine. P. Lyn, the Maker P S P A C E. Yea! Orlando! Your visit was so fun!

  5. Your slightly insane rant on pottery has made my day. I still mourn a truly beautiful black bowl I bought on the side of the road in Cave Creek AZ. An old, old Pima woman made it and sold the pottery out of her pick up truck. Crafted, in the best sense of the word.

  6. I think I like you. A pottery obsession and a natty little self deprecating spewing visual vocabulary way of writing. I think I’m coming here again.

  7. I am equal parts obsessed with pottery and textiles. Thank goodness I (need) to go to Ojai soon. Found your blog through Apartment Therapy and your 2013 makeover(blue sofa). I love everything in your home!
    I’ll be coming here regularly 🙂

Comments are closed.