Earlier this spring, central kitchen made the switch to a new line of espresso cups, handcrafted by one of their own, server Tyffany DeGray.
Working under the name Frankwares, DeGray spends much of her time outside of the restaurant creating mugs, bowls, plates, and plant pots in her studio space at Red Brick Studio in the Mission.
A recent transplant from Oregon, DeGray discovered pottery while earning her BFA at the Art Institute of Portland. She reconnected with the craft shortly after moving to San Francisco in 2014, and soon established her own distinctive aesthetic. DeGray works primarily with speckled buff clay which, true to its name, becomes speckled with glittering bits of iron when fired in the kiln. Once a piece has dried, DeGray selectively applies a white glaze to achieve an elegant, two-toned finish.
Beginning stages of a Frankwares mug.
DeGray visits her studio almost daily, occasionally even after wrapping up a long shift at central kitchen. “Everything is so time dependent,” she explains. Maintaining a successful ceramics practice requires a lot of commitment–pieces must be fired and “trimmed” at specific times during the drying process and, in a shared studio, time in the kiln has to be coordinated and quick.
[Spoons laying out to dry before being fired.]
In addition to being used for central kitchen‘s coffee service, DeGray’s work can also be found in salumeria–a variety of Frankwares mugs and potted succulents can be purchased in the shop.
For more information about Frankwares, e-mail DeGray at email@example.com, or follow her on Instagram: @frankwares.
Zoe Ferrigno has worked for Ne Timeas for three-and-a-half years, in a variety of roles. She will be spotlighting on our blog three to four times a month, offering a behind-the-scenes look at life at NTRG.
*Photos by Patricia Lee