Walking pot

I was trying to articulate what makes the walking pot so jaunty and cheerful. It has to do with the long shape of the legs and its round wide belly. 


I had heard about a kind of sake decanter called a funatokkuri (舟徳利) that had been made for transportation (drinking) on boats. I mistakenly thought it might have the same shape, sans the legs. But it turns out the funatokkuri is a bottle which has a bottom fashioned to be very flat, making it especially stable during transportation (drinking) on a boat. Also great, but no sigar.

I had, however, flashed back to visiting Lindisfarne. During low tide so many little boats were stranded on the sands. But they had little legs to hold them up.

I had to google “boat little legs low tide” but then I learned they’re called twin keels. They make the boats look very jaunty and cheerful, like they don’t actually mind having to walk if there’s no water about.

I feel like the walking pot has that kind of vibe. Ceramics walk about as much as boats do but they can look animated all the same.

Back to twin keels, briefly: they are not to be confused with beaching legs, which are skinny little grasshopper legs on either side of the boat. 

Beaching legs.

I’ll leave you with these ultra-charming illustrations Claudia Myatt made for the UK Boats.com explanation on sailboats. Look at the chunky little feet on these boats.

Keel types (from left): bilge keel, swing keel, lifting keel.

Keel types (from left): finn keel, bulb keel, long keel.

Using Format