Our glossary defines some of the technical phrases making it easier to understand our processes.

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Alumina is aluminium oxide. It is added in order to increase the strength of the product. This, together with meticulous attention to shape design and edge finishing, ensures that all Distinction and Performance products possess excellent resistance to chipping and breakage.



Biscuit Firing

Biscuit firing is the process of firing pottery before it is glazed.




Feldspar is a mineral added to the body to reduce the temperature at which vitrification occurs.


Fettling is the action of cleaning the rough edges of a piece of ware before firing.




Holloware refers to tableware that has depth, commonly used as receptacles, such as teapots, jugs and creamers.



Pin marks

All Steelite flatware items are supported during the glazing firing process on three small, triangular cross-section refractory pins. After firing, a tiny fragment of this material remains in the glaze until removed by a grinding process. The tiny areas from which the pin marks have been removed have no negative impact on a product’s performance. The major benefit of supporting flatware in this manner is that there is no need for the foot of the item to be unglazed. This removes one of the major causes of in-service glaze wear, occurring when sliding impacts take place during stacking, and helps to ensure that Steelite products give long, trouble-free performance, even in very demanding environments.

Press Cakes

Press cakes are created when extracting the excess water from the clay post moxing. This is done in the press house. The Press cakes are then fed into a machine which then shape the press cakes into pugs.


Pugs are rolls of clay created in the press house. These are shaped ready to be used on the flat and cup machines.




Slip is a form of liquid clay which is primarily used in the casting shop. It is also used in the pressure cast machines in the flat shop where it is pumped into a mould to create a piece of ware.




The vibro machines give the product a smoother finish before being glazed. The machine is filled with pieces of wood and ceramic media which vibrate over the product smoothing it’s surface.