Cranberry Pottery of Powell River, BC closed its doors on April 12, 2014. The pottery was in production for 40 years at which time the owners made the decision to retire. The company produced handcrafted porcelain-like stoneware pottery; they were known for their functional production pottery in five main patterns. They produced full lines of hand decorated dinnerware, accessories, teapots, serving dishes and ovenproof bakeware. As well, special designs evolved over the years, such as Crocus,Tulip, Sunflower, Bouquet, and Thistle patterns. In past years the shop showcased special projects and interpretive work by particular artists, such as unique patterns, and functional, but unusual, pottery pieces.

Production Dates: 1974 – 2014 (Official closing date: Dec 31, 2013; doors officially closed after the last order was filled on April 12, 2014)
Location: 6729 Cranberry Street, Powell River, BC
Second location: For three years there was a subsidiary shop in Campbell River which produced a brighter ‘Cone 2’ earthenware pottery in pinks, blues and yellows. The potters were Tracy Fleming, Carol Bieber, Laurie Shilleto, Aimee Dupont and Lori Porter.
Owners: Carol Bieber, Mark Cunningham (1974-1982); Lin Morrison became part owner in later years.

Potters: 
Carol Bieber 1975 – 2014
Mark Cuningham 1975 – 1982
Caryl Lyons 1979-1989 [unverified]
Lin Morrison 1980 – 2014
Lu Wuthrich 1987 – 1991
Myrtle Cunningham 1980 – 1985
Pam Begbie 1987 – 2010
Claire Heffernan 1982; 1987
Deb Lesuk 1988 – 1995
Mary Anne Grantham 1988
Alex Graham 1989 – 2005
Dawn Swanson 1989 – 1991
Penny Coyle 1992 –  1993
Adrienne Robillard 1993 – 1994
Claudette Sarrazin 1995 – 2014
Charlene Price 1996 – 2000
Tracy Fleming 1996 -1997
Alison Sawyer 2005
Terry Reiben 2006 – 2010
Tyler McCulloch 2011 – 2014
Pamela Mathews 2009 – 2014

“Almost all the pottery pieces were done by an individual potter, with their personal stamp in addition to the Cranberry Pottery stamp on the bottom of pots. In about 1990 dates were added to the bottom of pots, e.g., 91 for 1991, and 00 for 2000.  The glazing, however, was a group effort and all potters were encouraged to develop the necessary skills.  Over the years new designs were developed, and old ones dropped as tastes and materials changed, and the clay body eventually morphed to almost white stoneware.  All surface decoration was hand painted and all designs were unique to Cranberry Pottery.  However it should be noted that almost all employees were trained to be full-fledged potters, not just skilled in one area. Everyone made pots, glazed, shared in kiln loading both bisque and the fuel fired Cone 10 car kilns, and worked in the sales area as well.

For a variety of reasons, various production methods were used, not just throwing on the potter’s wheel.  Castware was initiated because a non-porous porcelain clay was required for vases; extruded pieces were needed for hand built rectangular casseroles; jiggered ware made for matching dinnerware, and was much easier on aging bodies.  All molds and all designs were produced in house.” (Carol Bieber)

Materials: brown spotty stoneware clay, matte & high gloss glazes

Glazes & Patterns:

Five main patterns were produced with over 100 items in stock of these patterns:

2a: Cranberry Pottery lidded bowl, Blackberry pattern

Blackberry pattern

  • Cranberry – cranberries with blue & green leaves
  • Blue Leaf line – blue leaves on cream-coloured background
  • Blackberry – blackberries with blackberry bramble leaves
  • Grass Iris – Irises with yellow leaf spears
  • Tiger Eye – abstract shapes in amber, tans & browns

Below are a few of the special patterns available as limited stock or by order:

  • Coast Collection – landscape in greens, blues, greys reflecting the BC coast
  • Tapestry (Earthenware)
  • Heron – Heron in cattails
  • Fish Design
  • Dragonfly pattern
  • Bamboo
  • Bouquet, Tulip, Crocus, Sunflower, Thistle
  • Kid Set (boats, trains, dinosaurs, teddy bears)

Marks: 

Cranberry Pottery mark, impressed script

impressed script

  • script: [in clay]

    Cranberry Pottery mark, ink script (M 1992)

    ink script (M 1992)

  • Cranberry [signed & dated]
  • Cranberry Pottery [in ink under glaze]

 

 

Additional resources:

Carol Bieber, co-owner and potter, has provided more in depth information on the history of the pottery, potters, and patterns. Check it out… 2014 Cranberry Pottery History (by Carol Bieber)

For a limited time only, the Cranberry Pottery website has information and the latest catalogue available – this has been the main source of my information.

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Tracy
7 months ago

Hi there:
I know that Cranberry Pottery in Powell River is now closed. Is there any shops that sell the blackberry pattern or any other pattern for that matter anywhere either on Vancouver Island or Powell River?

Thank you!

Peggy L Brown
1 year ago

I love my Heron and cattails pottery and wondered if by chance any one could put me in touch with the artist or know were I may purchase some dinner place settings.. I have the serving and fish platter, cups tea sets cream and sugar vases …all bought in port hardy bc area…
all were gifts and i treasure them ….

Susan
1 year ago

I have a hand soap dish and soap dispenser in their Iris pattern from 1989 – Looks like L (kind of like a V almost and an M… maybe Lin Morrison? I love this set and have used it for 30 years now. Also have a little dish (ramkin size) with a Christmas holly pattern and a little pot with a lid on it that were gifts from my sister who lived for a time in Powell River. I am happy to see that CRANBERRY POTTERY history is on line hopefully for many years to come. I plan on gifting my set to my daughter in Australia who is moving into a 4 bathroom home and says she will need it! Steel grey and blue fit in with her decor! There is a CRANBERRY POTTERY imprint on the soap dispenser so there will be a little bit of Cranberry Pottery in Gymea Bay (Sydney) Australia!

Linda
3 years ago

I am searching for some more cranberry plates… any suggestions ?

Rosalie
3 years ago

I recently broke a small vase blackberry pottery than I bought in Powell River. I live in Kelowna BC and looked online and realize your store is closed. Is there any way I can buy that same vase? I sure liked it a lot, rosalie Rapp