Terracotta has made its mark from prehistoric ages. With terracotta pottery being found in sites that go as far back as 24,000 BC, it is one of the oldest art forms that are still prevalent in the modern era. From the magnificent Terracotta Army in China to the beautiful figurines found from the ruins of ancient Rome, it has played an essential role in the development of art through the ages. Its superior durability, vibrant colours, and easy to mould nature make it a popular choice for sculptors and architects. However, the main reason for the popularity of terracotta is the fact that it is a form of clay that is easily found in most continents.
In most cases, this clay is also rich in iron. The reaction of the metal with oxygen leads to the formation of oxides that result in the red, orange, and yellow shades in the terracotta material. Originally, terracotta is baked under the sun. After this, the material is baked in fire in high-temperature kilns. Terracotta can also come in glazed and unglazed forms that add to its overall appeal. In India, terracotta is a prevalent material that is used in various types of pottery and art. Terracotta artefacts have been found in the ruins of the Indus valley Civilisation, which establishes its ancient usage patterns.
In this article, we will take a look behind the versatility of terracotta and discuss why it is still a preferred material in our homes over other traditional items.
Advantages of terracotta over other traditional materials
Apart from its organic appeal, there are quite a few other advantages the terracotta offers. Now, let us take a look at some of them.
- High durability
Terracotta is commonly used in interiors as flooring tiles due to its durability. The material can withstand a lot of stress and also resists breaking and chipping very effectively. It is not affected by the erosive action of the elements, resistant to fire and water, and can last for years without any degradation. Besides, terracotta is also resistant to mould and bacterial growth. So, not only does it have a low initial cost, but it can also help you to save money in terms of repairs and replacements.
- Superior aesthetics
Terracotta brings an earthy tone inside the house that makes the entire environment more soothing as well as appealing. The bright shades of orange, rust, or yellow can create the right element of contrast in any room. Moreover, the material can be easily shaped into different forms, resulting in exciting shapes and creative designs that can fit into the kitchen, bathroom, or living room. You can choose from a wide range of pottery to floor tiles and also the artwork of various forms.
- A cost-effective choice
Another essential feature of terracotta is that it is a budget-friendly material. While the price depends on the overall material quality and the design, they have a much lesser initial cost than the other traditional materials. Considering the durability factor, terracotta offers excellent value to a consumer and is a sustainable choice. At the same time, it is a classic material that does not decline in value when used in any property. So you can also consider it as a good option for future investments.
Easy to clean
Tired of cleaning the household items or the floor tiles every few months? Switching to terracotta can be the right choice for you. Terracotta does not absorb water, and hence it is easy to clean by the simple process of wiping with a mild soap solution. Being easy to maintain, makes them a better choice than wood, stone, and other materials of synthetic origin. Also, the material has a rough surface that makes it anti-slip in nature. This makes it very effective in bathroom floors and around swimming pools by preventing any slippage.
Using terracotta in the kitchen
Terracotta has been used in traditional Indian kitchens for centuries, and it is due to some of the unique properties that the material has. Here are a few factors that make terracotta utensils special.
- The nature of the clay makes it ideal for a slow cooking process. This makes it an excellent choice for cooking in the best possible manner while bringing out the right flavors of the items. Since the pots are porous, they also ensure the proper supply of moisture in the food items.
- Clay is alkaline, and hence it is a practical choice for neutralizing the acidic elements in food and making it neutral. Apart from that, terracotta utensils are non-stick in nature, and hence cooking in them requires less amount of oil. As a result, the entire cooking process is healthier, and the nutrients are preserved more effectively.
- Another advantage is that being a bad conductor of heat; clay can retain much of the supplied heat. So the entire cooking process can be conducted at a relatively lower temperature, making it an energy-saving process.
You can find a vareity of terracotta utensils on Ellementry’s website, so pick your favourite ones and experience the benefits of terracotta over any other material for utensils!
Using terracotta in gardens
In your home garden too, terracotta offers a whole range of advantages over other materials. Here is a look at some of those points for the garden lovers.
- With terracotta pots, overwatering is not a problem. Due to the porous nature of the material, the excess water can evaporate quickly. This prevents any waterlogging that can damage the roots of sensitive plants.
- Terracotta containers come in a variety of shapes that makes them suitable for all types of plants. Apart from the attractive designs, they are also light in weight, which makes them easy to handle.
It is a fact that the versatility of terracotta makes it an excellent choice for use in any corner of your home. If you are considering a redesign for your home, or even for a specific area, a terracotta based theme is something that you can always try. Those looking for a healthy meal in a beautiful terracotta appliance can take a look at the exclusive collection from Ellementry that blends the classic charm of terracotta with the right amount of elegance.
Every Indian household has grown up with this piece of earth. Terracotta ghadas or roof tiles, our baked earth has sheltered us with goodness. At Ellementry, we bring back culture and age-old traditions passed around the table for generations in our country. And we reimagine them to fit into our everyday lives. Take our Terracotta range for example. As it’s porous, it breathes and keeps anything that it stores fresh. Join us as we bring forth the revival of Terracotta!