Walking into your first pottery class, you might not think much about what to wear, but trust me, it matters.

Pottery is hands-on and gloriously messy, so choosing the right clothes for pottery class is about more than just keeping clean. It’s about feeling comfortable and moving freely, letting you dive into the art without a second thought about a splatter or a spill.

In this guide, I’ll share what works best for staying comfy and protected while you lose yourself in molding clay. Let’s make sure you’re dressed to enjoy every moment without any wardrobe distractions. Ready to find out what to slip on before you shape up? Let’s get started!

What to Wear to Pottery Class, Especially the First Time

What you wear to pottery class can make it more fun. Comfortable clothes will help you concentrate on making pottery instead of worrying about your clothes. Here are some practical tips I’ve summarized about what to wear for pottery class from head to toe.


Comfort is key. Opt for a comfortable, breathable top. A plain, fitted T-shirt works best.

Cotton is an excellent choice because it’s soft and easy to wash. Avoid loose-fitting sleeves that could dip into the clay or get caught on equipment. Short or tightly rolled long sleeves are best to keep your arms free and clear of the clay.

Stay casual and avoid precious pieces. It’s best to wear something you won’t mind getting dirty (old clothes are great). Getting clay on your clothes can happen while you learn. Most clay washes out, but some colored clays might stain your clothes.


When it comes to what you wear for your legs, pick pants that are comfy and not too loose. Stretchy pants, like yoga or jeans (with some stretch), are great as they let you move around easily. This is especially important if you’ll be working at a wheel where you might need to adjust your position a lot.

Make sure the pants you choose are not too long or baggy; you don’t want them to get stepped on or dragged on the floor. Ankle length works best. Plus, regular jeans or canvas work pants are durable choices and can handle a little clay mess.

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Safety first. Wear shoes that completely cover your toes to protect them from dropped tools, heavy equipment, and bits of clay on the floor. So closed-toe shoes are a must to wear when attending a pottery class.

Choose non-slip soles. Slippery floors are a thing in pottery studios, especially near the water buckets and cleaning areas. Pick non-slip shoes will help you grip the floor as you move around.

Other Wearing Tips for Taking a Pottery Class

Besides the basic outfit, there are a few more things to consider when dressing for a pottery class. These tips cover everything from jewelry to what you should wear after class, ensuring you’re fully prepared for a comfortable and hassle-free experience.

Make Jewelry Minimal

Rings, bracelets, and long necklaces can get in the way or even become safety hazards when working with pottery equipment. Best to leave them at home or store them safely before class starts.

Keep Your Hair Out of the Way

Long hair should be tied back securely. A simple ponytail, bun, or braid will keep your hair out of the clay and away from your face, letting you focus on your craft without interruptions.

Keep Nails Short and Sweet

Long nails can make working with clay difficult, snagging and leaving unwanted marks in your projects. Keeping your nails short will help you handle the clay more effectively.

Opt for an Old Pair of Glasses

If you wear glasses, consider using an older pair for pottery classes, as clay dust and splatters can scratch or dirty your lenses. You might also want to use a glasses strap to keep them securely in place while you work.

Bring an Apron to the Pottery Class

An apron is essential to protect your clothes from clay stains. Choose one with pockets—it’s handy for keeping tools close while you work.

Post-Pottery Clothes

It’s always nice to have a change of clothes, especially if you have plans after class. Clay can be messy, and you might not want to wear your studio clothes out and about.

Don’t Forget to Dress for the Weather

Pottery studios can vary in temperature. In winter, layer up to stay warm, especially in studios that can be a bit chilly. In summer, opt for lighter fabrics that breathe well to keep you cool, even if the studio heats up.

Take Your Personal Tool Kit (Optional)

While most studios provide essential tools, having your own set can be a plus. You’ll always have your preferred tools on hand, which may help.

By paying attention to these additional wearing suggestions, you can ensure that nothing distracts you from the joy of creating pottery in class. Always remember that comfort, safety, and practicality are key.

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What Else Can You Prepare for a Pottery Class

When you’re gearing up for a pottery class, a little extra preparation can really enhance your experience. Here are some focused and practical tips to consider:

Familiarize Yourself with Basic Techniques

Before your first class, take some time to equip yourself with basic pottery techniques. Online resources like YouTube offer numerous instructional videos for beginners on topics like centering clay, throwing basic shapes, and hand-building methods.

Study Pottery Terminology

Pottery has its own vocabulary. Consider learning a few common terms like “wedging,” “leather-hard,” or “bisque” to enhance your understanding of instructions and communication with instructors and peers during the pottery class.

Take a Notebook for Notes and Feedback

Bring a notebook to record key information like techniques, instructions, and feedback. You may even take photos of specific points or steps. This will be a valuable resource for tracking your progress and recalling specific methods later.

Explore Pottery Styles and Bring Visual Inspirations

You can look into various styles of pottery and famous potters whose works inspire you. This research can help guide your creative direction and give you design ideas you might want to attempt as you gain more skills. You can even communicate this with your instructors or peers for more insights.

If you already have specific designs in mind, bringing pictures or examples can help guide your work. This is particularly useful when experimenting with shapes, textures, or decoration techniques you may have seen and want to try replicating or adapting.

By preparing both physically and technically, you can improve your ability to absorb information during the pottery class and contribute to a more engaging learning experience.

FAQs About Pottery Class Dressing

Q1: Can You Do Pottery With Long Nails?

It’s possible to do pottery with long nails, but it can be challenging. Long nails may make shaping clay difficult and can leave marks. If you’re serious about pottery, it might be wise to keep your nails trimmed.

But if you prefer to keep your nails long, consider using tools like ribs and pottery sponges more often to avoid touching the clay directly. Wearing Thin gloves can also help protect your nails, but they might affect how you feel the clay.

Q2: Can You Do Pottery With Acrylic Nails?

Like long natural nails, acrylic nails can make working with clay more difficult. Acrylic nails can break easily in clay and make working difficult, maybe painful too. If you must keep them, be extra cautious and perhaps focus on hand-building techniques that require less intricate contact with the clay, such as slab building or coiling, rather than throwing on the wheel. Also, you can use pottery tools to reduce the need for deep pressing or scraping, which could put your acrylics at risk.

Q4: Does Clay Stain Clothes?

Yes, especially colored clay. Most clay washes out, but some stains might remain, particularly on light-colored clothes. Wear clothes you don’t mind getting dirty in the pottery studio.

Q5: Does Clay Come Out of Clothes?

Yes, in most cases, clay can be washed out of clothes. Pre-treat any stains and soak your clothes in water with laundry detergent after class for better cleaning. Washing them as soon as possible also helps remove clay completely.

Q6: How Messy is a Pottery Class?

Pottery classes can be fairly messy! Working with wet clay, especially on a wheel, means splatters and spills are common. Most studios are well-equipped for this mess, with tools and work areas designed for easy cleaning. Wearing appropriate clothing and keeping your workspace organized will help manage the mess.

Q7: What to Expect From the First Ceramics Class?

Get ready to learn the basics. You’ll be introduced to the materials, tools, and techniques used in pottery. You’ll likely start with simple projects to practice basic skills like wedging(kneading clay to remove air bubbles), centering clay on the wheel, and creating simple shapes like bowls or cylinders. It’s a learning experience, so don’t worry about making perfect pieces right away. Focus on enjoying the process of getting creative with clay!


So, with these wearing tips in mind, you’re all set to choose comfortable and practical clothing for your pottery class. By dressing appropriately, you’ll be free to focus on the fun and creativity of working with clay, making the most of your pottery experience.

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