How Autumn Leaf China is Made

The Hall China Company provides tours of its plant and discusses each step of the china-making process.

A Hall’s china product has its beginning in powder form. The powder mixture consists of feldspar, flint, and several different types of clay, one of which is obtained from England. The powered ingredients are measured and mixed with water in a machine that is similar to a cement mixer. The resulting watery clay mixture, or slip, is passed through separators that remove metals and other unwanted debris.

The beginning process, powdered ingredients are mixed with water. This photo shows the complete process of creating a china product. Watery clay mixture compressed to eliminate water and air; clay placed in mold; leadless glaze applied; 1st firing; and final firing after decals applied. Clay mixture is poured into pre-formed molds. Handles being applied to soup mug. Loose clay particles are removed prior to drying process. Soup cups dry for 24 hours before glaze is applied. Leadless glaze procedure explained to tour group. Mugs drying after glaze has been applied. Spray unit where colors are applied to chinaware. Chinaware going into the kiln. Another set of chinaware ready for firing. Product going into kiln where it is gradually heated to 2400 degrees Fahrenheit. If product has decsls, they are applied after the firing, then the product is fired again at 600 degrees Fahrenheit. This photo shows a ball jug in 3 stages.  The large white jug is from the pre-formed mold where the clay slip is poured into mold. The smaller white jug in the back ready to be fired. The green jug is shown as final product after color s sprayed on jug and then fired. Products ready to be shipped. The Hall Closet, Hall China's retail outlet in East Liverpool, OH. A group of buyers searching for bargains at The Hall Closet. Hall China Company provides group tours.

The slip is then pumped into press machines that remove the water, which in turn produces a flat, thick layer of clay. The clay is then dropped into long bins and allowed to age for forty-eight hours. After the aging process is complete the clay is pressed through pug mills to remove air from the clay.

The clay is taken and shaped into bowls, plates and other flat china pieces.

To create the famous Hall China teapots and jugs, water must be added to the processed clay mixture. The resulting slip is poured into molds and the raw mixture is left to dry for twenty-four hours.

The formed china pieces are then taken on carts to be glazed either by hand-dipping or spraying. After the special leadless glaze has been applied, the product moves on to the kiln process where the temperature of the china is slowly raised to 2400° F. This process can take up to five hours to complete.

China pieces that passed defect inspection are then moved to the decorating area. This area is where hand-painting, such as the gold trim on the Autumn Leaf china, and transfer decals are applied. After this process has been completed, the china is fired again at a lower temperature.