By Renata Parker

Often referred to as the pottery capital, Seagrove, North Carolina is known for its handcrafted pottery that reflects traditions that started here more than 200 years ago.

“Seagrove is a mecca visited by potters from across the country,” says David Fernandez, Seagrove mayor, and potter at Seagrove Stoneware Pottery. “Some of them, like myself, have stayed.

The tradition and the availability of materials attract the potters. Customers realize that in one location, they can find virtually anything made out of pottery.”

Attracted to the area for its abundance of diverse, high-quality local clay, the first Seagrove potters created redware and later forged salt-glazed stoneware. Over the years, as the pottery town grew, new and different styles of pottery emerged.

Today, the diverse community is home to 80 working potters who continue the tradition of their families, some for nine generations.

Pottery Tour

More than 50 shops, galleries, and studios dot the scenic countryside along Hwy. 705, also known as the Pottery Highway. Whether you are a first-time visitor, serious buyer, or casual collector, you are sure to find a one-of-a-kind treasure. From art pieces to large-scale works, there are a variety of styles represented, including raku, crystalline, stoneware, salt-glaze, wood, and kiln-fired pieces. Most shops are opened year-round. You can take a self-guided tour from shop to shop to browse collections and watch potters working at the wheel, glazing, and creating. Here are a few places not to miss.