Sanity Studios

Sanity Studios was set up in early 2019 when Isobel, our potter and founder, had a nervous breakdown and needed something to try and keep her sane.  Initially set up as a hobby studio in an airing cupboard, we've quickly grown into a busy teaching studio. Offering pottery workshops to all ages and abilities. We believe everyone should feel comfortable creating and are passionate about ensuring art is fun and welcoming to everyone!

We run Sanity a bit differently than other companies.  We're much more interested in pottery and people than profits and want to ensure that people from all walks of life are at home in our studio. Because of this, we uphold the three basic principles of kindness, understanding, and acceptance. We don't tolerate any breach of these principles whether from our staff or students alike so be nice, or book elsewhere.

We're growing rapidly at the moment and have finally moved out of Isobel's backroom, and into a beautiful unique underground studio in central Bath. We're now based under the Historic Pulteney Bridge in a 400-year-old catacomb, complete with swing chairs and pots galore. 

 

 

Isobel Mcmahon

Potter and Founder

In  2016, I started practising pottery as a hobby to help me manage my worsening mental health. I'd been suffering from severe depression and anxiety for several years and, the mounting pressure from my job as a mortgage broker, led to it all coming to a head on June 6th 2016, when I had my first breakdown. 

 

One of the things about my anxiety which I found absolutely exhausting, was the constant barrage of thoughts running through my head. No matter what medication my doctor prescribed me or the therapies I was taking, seemingly nothing could slow down my thoughts.  I picked up pottery by chance when my partner walked past Simon's Pottery and suggested I give it a go-to try and get out the house more. 

 

As soon as I got my hands on the clay my mind went quiet for the first time in almost a decade. Needless to say, I couldn't wait for my next session! That summer I had several lessons a week and spent the rest of my time relentlessly hunting for a reasonably priced pottery wheel to call my own. 

It was 18 months before I felt ready to return to Financial Services full time. In the hope of finding greener pastures, I ended up leaving my job as a mortgage broker and began working as a tax and estate planner for a local firm. I could work from home, manage my own client base and most importantly manage my own time. Perfect right? Well,  as it turns out,  not so perfect. Unsurprisingly dealing with other peoples finances, doesn't ever become any less stressful. The only thing I'd changed was that instead of helping people buy houses, I was helping them plan for their death. Not the brightest subject for someone coming out of a depressive episode. 

I'd planned to start Sanity studios at the start of 2018, while working full time in my new role. It soon became clear that this was not possible.  As I had in my previous role, I began to obsess over my ever-increasing targets and could feel my anxiety starting to come back with a vengeance.  I'd like to say that I realised of my own accord that I'd slipped back into old, unhealthy habits but, really it was the universe that insisted on me leaving the world of finance for good; When my nan died, and I got fired (four days after disclosing I had depression, with no prior warnings. Yes, really, that still happens) all on the same day. 

It was then that I decided to really give this whole struggling artist life a chance. I still have bad days, but, they just don't seem as bad when I have a ball of clay between my fingers and a podcast chattering away in the background. 

 

Just a little latergram of the lovely li

Julia

Clay Gremlin

Hiya! I'm Sanity's Clay Gremlin!

 

My pottery journey started in late 2019 when I decided to take up lessons to help manage my uni stress. The clay wrapped me in their cold, soft hands, and I fell in love. The texture, the sound, the satisfaction of holding a finished, useful product you made yourself... pottery is pure joy. 

Look out for my little brand's shelf in the studio; as Pebble and Grey, I make and sell pottery, as well as watercolours, both originals and prints.

Come and chat about books with me; as an English Literature and Philosophy student when I'm not covered in clay, I have plenty of recommendations at the ready!

Just a little latergram of the lovely li

Julia

Clay Gremlin

My pottery journey started in late 2019 when I decided to take up lessons to help manage my uni stress. The clay wrapped me in their cold, soft hands, and I fell in love. The texture, the sound, the satisfaction of holding a finished, useful product you made yourself... pottery is pure joy. 

Look out for my little brand's shelf in the studio; as Pebble and Grey, I make and sell pottery, as well as watercolours, both originals and prints.

Come and chat about books with me; as an English Literature and Philosophy student when I'm not covered in clay, I have plenty of recommendations at the ready!

Aaaaannndd Welcome David!__David’s our h

david

Heat Magician 

I started working at Sanity after Isobel found me on the street! I've had a rough start in life and am desperate to start turning around. I'm mainly interested in glazing and find the chemical combinations and the changes the smallest dusting of different materials makes mind-blowing. I'm developing lots of my own glazes which you'll be able to choose from once you've finished your pots off in the studio.

 

ben

Master of Coin

I don't make pots but I'm a very important member of the team, or so they keep telling me. I help look after the day to day running of the business as well as keeping up with the company accounts. I have attempted to make a pot in the past, I made a lovely little water bowl but alas I am an accountant, not an artist. 

Moose is ready to get working!.jpg

Customer Service

Moose

Hoomans make me work. Gets paid in fishies and floofy tails.