Making of: The Manchada Collection

Handmade artisan ceramics from Spain

Meet the Manchada Collection, a curation of green speckled ceramics from southern Spain.

We’re always on a quest to source and design unique pieces that will help you craft a home that is as unique as you are and these handmade beauties have a wonderful story…

Our new collection of tableware is glazed in rustic warm white and yellow, splattered with green and brown.

Sourced from Spain by Late Afternoon

You may know that Late Afternoon was born between London and Madrid, where we were living as we shaped our first collections. We discovered many of our artisan makers by literally hopping in cars and driving to remote towns to visit them and learn about what they do. This collection is no different! Last year, after a few messages exchanged, we drove to the olive groves of Jaen in Andalusia in search of Alberto and Paco, the brothers that make these pieces.

Rustic speckled tableware

The collection takes the name ‘Manchada’ from the Spanish word for ‘speckled’. The distinct green colour is traditional from the area where the pieces are made, which were heavily influenced by the Moorish tradition of ceramics brought from northern Africa.

Eight generations of potters

Each piece has been developed for Late Afternoon by Alberto and Paco, two brothers who are the 8th generation of potters in their family. They can trace back the lineage that far, but say there could be more…

The family’s pottery studio has been in the same place for over 100 years. They still have the original kiln which was fired using olive stones left over from olive oil production. They are rich in oil and energy and excellent for making pottery, the brothers say, although of course now they use a modern gas kiln.

“Before we used a modern gas-fired kiln, the old kiln used to be operated by a man shovelling in olive stones and wood 24-hours a day, knee-deep in ash.”

Weeks of work in every handmade piece

Every piece in this collection has been handmade, dried, finished at the ‘leather dry stage’, baked once, glazed and baked twice. Many pieces are lost along the way, so literally weeks of time and work go into creating every piece. This is one of the many reasons why we think shopping for handmade pieces is so fulfilling and important, instead of supporting the production of poorly-made factory tat.