I don’t know about you, but I have a love for handmade wares that blur the lines between refinement and organic imperfection. Perhaps it’s about my need to see the courage in others to reveal just a few of their flaws in the context of their beauty. I think we’re all drawn to that when we stop and think about it. Anything {or anyone}too perfect just feels shrink-wrapped and intimidating, at least to me. Don’t get me wrong, I love sophistication and excellence! I just need to see that human touch.

Today’s featured maker blurs the lines between refinement and organic imperfection with such beauty. Michelle Micahel of Elephant Ceramics truly imbues her inspiring humanity into the stunning pieces she creates with an authenticity that creates in me admiration and reflection. There is a sense that she works with the most organic of elements, gathering up bits of earth and sea and sky – dust and salt and ocean air – to create her simple yet elegant collection of ceramics. There is a sense that she knows how to stop herself from “polishing to perfection” such that she reveals the true beauty in her pieces. I need to learn from that.

I think it requires significant restraint to create something so organic. Or maybe it’s really just courage. The courage to allow the imperfections to be a part of what makes it so beautiful. Makes me think about how I see myself, how I try to clean myself up for the world. Maybe my flaws are a part of my beauty? Do I have the courage to find out?

I’d say I’m working on that, trying to balance the “polishing and the refining” with the “revealing and relaxing.” It is a lost art, I think. The art of being yourself. 

I’m grateful today for Michelle’s work – for the beauty and refinement, for the organic and rustic simplicity, for the imperfections and textures that takes centre stage in the coming together of the whole. I’m grateful for the ways her work has caused me to reflect.

I hope Michelle has inspired you, too. Perhaps together we can find the courage to shed perfection and instead find beauty.