Last year on Instagram, one of my followers commented on a photo. She had been following me for a while, but in the list of notifications I had never come across her account. For some reason her Instagram name caught my eye and I mindlessly clicked on it to check it out. And there before my eyes was some of the most beautiful imagery of ceramics that I had ever seen. Without even thinking, my finger hit follow, and I was writing a message to say hello and and see if she would like to be featured on our blog.
Simone’s philosophy is all about embracing a slower pace of life and being present in the moment which had me hooked [since I am a self-professed workaholic/perfectionist]. So I knew I was going to love interviewing her. But what I hadn’t anticipated was that I would be met with the most heartfelt answers to my questions in the history of the blog. You are in for a treat with this interview, so make yourself a cup of tea and enjoy this beautiful interview with the maker of Winterwares, Simone Nabholz.
Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Simone, I’m have a beautiful ceramics studio in Fremantle where I make dinnerware and other lovely things like vases and planter pots out of clay. I also hold workshops teaching mindful making, giving people the experience of slowing down and being grounded in the present moment while making pottery.
What is a typical day for you?
I like to wake up early and get a couple of hours to myself to exercise and have a quiet cup of tea before my boys wake up and the morning gets hectic. After I drop the kids at school I’m at the studio and each day looks different! I might be making and glazing, keeping the kilns loaded and fired, working on ideas for new products and collaborations, doing styling and photography. I love all the parts of it and I’m happy I can dip in and out of different things each day.
What do you love most about what you do and why?
I love how calm I feel when I am in my studio. Working with clay is such a grounding experience and my studio feels like a little sanctuary away from the busy world outside. I love the people that I’ve met along the way with Winterwares, through collaborations and workshops. I’ve met so many amazing people who inspire me. It’s really opened my world in such a good way.
When did you start creating ceramics and turn it in to a business?
A couple of years ago I burnt out from being too busy and trying to do too many things. I got to a point where I had terrible anxiety and depression and took stress leave from my corporate job. I started on a journey of simplifying, decluttering and learning to say no to things that weren’t essential. For a few months I gave myself time to stop, doing all the things on the to-do list, and to just be. I turned off all my social media accounts, swam in the ocean, cooked simple and wholesome meals, spent time with my children and enrolled in a pottery class as art therapy. It felt so good to do something with my hands. I instantly fell in love with working with clay. It makes you be present and in the moment and that’s exactly what I needed.
What has been your proudest career achievement to date?
There have been so many! Being featured in Home Beautiful was a really exciting moment for me, it has always been my favourite homewares magazine and to be in there with other people I admire was pretty special. Teaching workshops is always a fulfilling experience, I get such nice feedback from people who’ve come to a workshop and gotten a lot out of it. I’m also not so secretly in love with my Instagram community!
What does being wholehearted mean to you?
I think it starts with being true to yourself, knowing who you are and what you value. Once you know that, being wholehearted is aligning your life and your decisions to those things to live well. Living with intention, with your whole heart is a beautiful experience that brings endless joy.