How do you make a teapot handle?

Creating a handle for a teapot is a crucial step in teapot-making, requiring both functionality and aesthetic consideration. Here's a basic guide for beginners:

Materials Needed:

  • Clay (the same type as your teapot)
  • Slip (a mixture of clay and water) or scoring tool
  • Sponge or a damp cloth
  • Pottery tools (for trimming and smoothing)

Steps to Make a Teapot Handle:

  1. Prepare the Clay:

    • Take a lump of clay and knead it to remove any air bubbles.
    • Roll the clay into a coil or slab, depending on the handle style you prefer. The coil method is more common for round, looped handles.
  2. Shape the Handle:

    • Coil Method: Roll the clay into a long, even coil. Bend the coil into a handle shape that fits comfortably in your hand. The size and shape should complement the teapot and provide a good grip.
    • Slab Method: Roll out a slab of clay and cut out a handle shape using a knife or a cutting tool. This method is suitable for flat, more angular handles.
  3. Refine the Shape:

    • Smooth out any rough edges or bumps. You can use a sponge or damp cloth to refine the surface.
    • If you want a more ergonomic grip, you can gently flatten the part where the hand will hold the handle.
  4. Test the Fit:

    • Hold the handle against the teapot to ensure it’s the right size and shape. The handle should be proportionate to the teapot and positioned for balance and ease of pouring.
  5. Attach the Handle:

    • Score the points on the teapot where the handle will attach. Scoring creates a rough surface for better adhesion.
    • Apply slip to the scored areas on both the teapot and the handle.
    • Gently attach the handle to the teapot, pressing firmly but carefully to ensure a strong bond without distorting the shape.
    • Use a tool or your fingers to blend the clay at the joints for a seamless look.
  6. Dry and Fire:

    • Allow the handle to dry slowly and evenly with the teapot.
    • Once dry, the teapot with the handle can be bisque fired, followed by glazing and final firing, if desired.


  • When shaping the handle, consider the weight of the teapot when it’s filled with tea. The handle should be strong enough to support this weight.
  • The placement of the handle is important for balance. It should be opposite the spout and positioned at a comfortable height.
  • Be creative with the design, but always prioritize functionality and comfort.
  • Make sure the handle is securely attached to avoid accidents during use.

Creating a teapot handle requires some practice, so don't be discouraged if it takes a few tries to get it right. Each attempt will improve your skill and understanding of the process.

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