Q&A with Hannah from Mayclay Ceramics
Introducing this amazing human, my dear friend Hannah - the talented, creative soul and heart behind Mayclay Ceramics.
I first met Han a few years ago at a local meet the makers market day, here in our hometown of Newcastle. I had been following her for a while on Instagram, admiring her work from afar, and loving watching her go from strength to strength with her new startup business - she was such an inspiration to me, as she was someone I could relate to. This passionate young woman, who was also a wife and mum, was chasing her dreams and turning them into a reality, whilst also juggling the work/life balance perfectly - I was in complete awe of her. Han was bringing her dream to life, and it was so inspiring to watch it all unfold. So when the chance came to meet her, and finally get my hands on one of her gorgeous handmade ceramic pieces - I just couldn't resist, and walked straight up to her and introduced myself. Fast forward a few years, we have been close friends ever since that day, and we continue to support, encourage and be there for each other on a daily basis. How lucky I am to have her in my life!
Today we talked about her professional journey and what led her to becoming a ceramicist, and also dive into some personal questions to get to know her more on a personal level.
So find a cosy spot to sit down and relax, and enjoy this interview.
Love Sally x o
Tell us a bit about yourself, and what you do?
My name is Hannah, I’m a ceramicist, business owner and first and foremost, a wife and mother of two beautiful children.
Using clay is my creative expression, and I love using my hands to make works of art. I also have a passion for lighting design, and have been blessed to be able to incorporate the two.
When did you realise that this is what your passion was, or what you wanted to do?
A few years ago, I had a really difficult month and it transformed the way I showed up in life.
I needed a form of therapy to help me heal through my hands, and so I decided to take up ceramics.
I had good and bad days, but as time went on something switched in my mind, and I found a love for what I was creating.
What’s been your biggest accomplishment to date?
Personally, my beautiful children, Ivy and Billy. I feel so thankful to be a mother. From a work perspective, Mayclay Lighting!
What has been your greatest challenge in life so far, and how did you overcome it/how are you working to overcome it?
My greatest challenge was suddenly losing my Dad to a heart attack, followed by giving birth to a 17 week old (in utero) only a few months later. We were all devastated and the grief was hard, but being there for one another, and using clay as therapy, helped me overcome the pain.
Describe yourself in five words.
Motherly, genuine, loyal, resilient, nature-lover!
What are you most proud of?
My beautiful children! I’m also proud of starting a business from nothing.
What are three things you are most grateful for?
I’m so grateful for my family, to live by the ocean, and for the connections I’ve made in my beautiful friends.
What do you love most about yourself?
I’ve always loved the colour of my eyes.
What’s your favourite way to move your body?
Bushwalking and swimming in the ocean.
How important is self-care to you, & how do you take time out just for you - to nourish your soul?
Self care is often hard, but also so necessary - I love morning walks, and every now and then, a warm hot bath at night with a face mask, candle and bath salts.
If you had a self-care box you could open up when you needed some timeout, what would you fill it with?
Healthy raw treats, a candle, flowers in a Mayclay vase (haha), and face mask.
What’s the best business advice you have ever received?
If you’re going into a business for a lifestyle change, just remember it’s about working smarter, not harder. Thank you to Emma Lemke for sharing this advice.
Also, a good friend once shared “If it’s not a hell yes, it’s a no!” Thanks Sal! xx
What is a random act of kindness you have done for someone else to brighten up their day?
A fresh produce and flowers delivery, to a friend in need of a little love and care.
What are 5 things you can’t live without?
My children, husband, clay, paw paw ointment and food/water.
What’s one thing you haven’t done that you really want to do?
I’d really love to swim with whale sharks and dolphins in the wild.
What’s one thing most people wouldn’t know about you?
I grew up in Armidale (NSW) countryside.
If you could have lunch with one person (living or passed) who would it be & why?
My Dad - it would be nice to tell him what a beautiful father he was.
What’s a talent you wish you had?
I wish I could dance, and also paint beautiful artworks.
Finish this sentence - I feel my best when I….
..am surrounded by nature.
Who would your celebrity BFF be?
Alicia Keys (in my dreams).
"There is no real beauty without some slight imperfection."
Mexican and Indian food.
I’m a lover of creatures great and small, but my favourite animal would be a whale! They are so majestic in every way.
Currently Natalie Walton - This is home. I also love a good biography.
Favourite holiday destination?
Spirit Bird - Xavier Rudd
Favourite singer or band?
I have way too many to pick a fave! Aurora, Alicia Keys, Juke Ross, Stephany Gretzinger, Xavier Rudd - such a variety haha.
Romeo & Juliet
If you were an animal, what would you be?
My daughter Ivy said I would be a dolphin, because I love the ocean.
Who inspires you & why?
I have some incredibly talented friends who pursue and live out their dreams with ambition, strength and courage - they are who continually inspire me.
Any advice for women following their dreams, but are afraid to take the next step?
Be bold, brave, believe in yourself and worth. Surround yourself with like-minded supportive people, and take a moment to breathe, gather your thoughts and right them down.
To follow Hannah on her journey or to connect with her, please click here @mayclay_ceramics.