Light colored unglazed clay staining

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Iizuki
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Tue Jul 21, 2020 1:39 pm

Example white clay pot
Example white clay pot
whiteteapot.jpg (32.9 KiB) Viewed 326 times
This thread is not about cleaning teapots. There are already good threads on the subject.
My questions are about the speed and quality of the staining process and how to prevent it.

So lets get down to business:
  1. How fast do teapots like the one in the picture get stained?
  2. What does the stain look like? Inside and outside? Please send pictures for reference, if you happen to own such a pot.
  3. How to slow down the process? Throughout rinsing after use comes to mind.

A bit of context: I'm on a verge of buying a white teapot but the staining uncertainty is holding me back.
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Victoria
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Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:36 pm

Hello @Iizuki, I only use my unglazed white kettle just to heat water. When I first got it the taste of clay was very strong, so I heated some rice water inside a few times, followed with heating spent green tea leaves. Clay flavor seems to be gone now. I didn’t notice any staining, but I’d suspect with frequent use with tea that could be an issue. I think these unglazed pots may be just intended to heat water.
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Youzi
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Tue Jul 21, 2020 4:12 pm

Use extra soft water, don't overfill, always rinse out your teapot, use light colored teas. Basically these.
Last edited by Youzi on Wed Jul 22, 2020 3:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
Iizuki
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Wed Jul 22, 2020 12:26 am

@Victoria using it only with clear water is certainly a safe bet. Was that your plan all along?

Youzi wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 4:12 pm
Use extra smooth water, don't overfill, always rinse out your teapot, use light colored teas. Basically these.
That's solid advice. About the color: How bad do you think Japanese greens would be?
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Bok
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Wed Jul 22, 2020 12:35 am

Iizuki wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 1:39 pm
[*]How fast do teapots like the one in the picture get stained?
A lot depends on how the pot was fired and how porous the clay is. More porosity, more staining. Some very porous ones might stain from the inside > out. If it is high fired it won't stain too much.
Iizuki wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 1:39 pm
[*]What does the stain look like? Inside and outside?
Same as any pot, wherever the most tea flows by will stain: lower outside of the spout, inside everywhere, except the inside of the lid, rims top and bottom etc. Always brown, getting darker. Maybe white in between, depending on how your water is.
Iizuki wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 1:39 pm
[*]How to slow down the process? Throughout rinsing after use comes to mind.
[/list]
If it reaches an intolerable level for you, just reset it with sodium percarbonate 8-)
Iizuki wrote:
Tue Jul 21, 2020 1:39 pm
A bit of context: I'm on a verge of buying a white teapot but the staining uncertainty is holding me back.
In my experience white clays are rarely good with tea, but I might be wrong. Even porcelain when unglazed I found terrible with tea.
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Victoria
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Wed Jul 22, 2020 2:51 am

Iizuki wrote:
Wed Jul 22, 2020 12:26 am
Victoria using it only with clear water is certainly a safe bet. Was that your plan all along?
Yes, sorry maybe I wasn’t very clear these unglazed white Japanese pots are for heating water, not really for steeping tea. The one you are looking at is most likely for heating very small amounts of water for use with gyokuro.
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Victoria
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Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:04 am

Interesting, I just saw the Shukei piece you referenced in your OP on Artistic Nippon. It seems he is suggesting to use as a teapot and priced accordingly. Before buying I’d ask if when wet it has smell of clay, it could take a while to cure before use. Personally I wouldn’t want to use for tea only for water, it will be absorbent, taste like clay, and stain, but hey maybe it can work eventually for tea once it’s marinated :).
As white teapots tend to stain faster than darker teapots, it is recommended that you slow down this process by soaking your teapot in clean, cold water before every use.
I have a light beige fine clay mogake set by Chitoshi Morita (Koudou Studio kiln). It has a very light glaze partly on the outside though, and does not stain with use. Inside it is unglazed and hasn’t stained with green tea.

A few TF members have Yamada Sou’s Aoyu (blue glazed) kyusu, those are unglazed white/beige clay inside, wonder how easily those stain. But I think the clay is very different from the Shukei you referenced. The Shukei clay is like my Japanese white clay kettle.
Iizuki
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Sat Jul 25, 2020 9:04 am

Thanks for your input @Bok.
Victoria wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:04 am
Interesting, I just saw the Shukei piece you referenced in your OP on Artistic Nippon. It seems he is suggesting to use as a teapot and priced accordingly.
Yeah it really does seem that way. And there are others too. Well, maybe I'll just play it safe and don't become a white tea pot beta tester.
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