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ClayLab Breaks The Mold (and Creates Beautiful Art at the Same Time)

Meet the dynamic duo behind the ingenious brand who slay from the shape up and raise awareness about breast cancer, one pink ribbon at a time

It is a truth universally acknowledged that art is in its own way is a precise science. The basics need to be nailed down and most, if not all, artists thrive in defining their viewpoint of perfection. For sisters Justine and Jonah Inandan, however, they embrace the fact that their creations are always ‘not made equal.’ 

“Having learned and breathed art my whole life, I know what it is like to be exact, down to the very last detail,” says Justine. “But in the case of ClayLab, we revel in the fact that they come out ‘imperfect.’ All the bumps, the little crevices—they are what make our creations the way it is, and in a way, they’re perfect.”

Born as a concept resulting from an immense passion and expression of art, ClayLab is your quirky pitstop for modern decor. The Instagram shop is home to otherworldly oddities that add color to your space, and hosts a variety of bits and bobs in different categories here: their boob pots, cheekily called ‘plantatas”; Blob the Builders, their 7-chakra incense holders; their titbits holders that can hold mini items and small succulents; and their more iconic line-up called the Lipscense holders, their smackable support systems that hold in your calming incense sticks for your next ‘need-to-breathe’ moment.


Breaking the mold

Believe it or not, this business started on impulse. “It was just a random thought and an impulse that coursed our minds one day,” says Jonah. “We got ourselves thinking, ‘Why not hone our skills in using clay as a form of art?’”

The two sisters are not new to the art industry. Justine graduated with a Fine Arts Degree in Multimedia Arts and was part of a luxury hotel’s pre-opening team as its graphic artist for five years, therefore the more seasoned of the two. Jonah, on the other hand, contributes a fresh perspective and her own set of learned design principles, having just graduated with a Fine Arts Degree in Industrial Design. While their fields and experience may differ, the both of them have seen this through as a solid partnership in the weeks they’ve been up and running.

“I love that Jonah and I pursued different things. It made us more aware and more open to what the other can bring to the table, and working with my sister is something very much fulfilling, mainly because we’re in this together from the get go.”

They make use of two kinds of clay in their creations: the first is polymer or PVC-based, which is more mineral clay than authentic clay and is a popular base for most craft items. The second is air dry clay, which is a more delicate form of clay and dries more quickly than the former. Justine and Jonah utilize those two bases to create what they have on board today. Their experience is made all the more enhanced with a little instruction on their Instagram Highlights called Clay Care, where they teach their customers how to ensure the clay creation they bring home will still be in optimal and tiptop shape.

Meet the Fairly Odd Presents

The inspiration behind their sublime selection is of quirk and a little spirituality, and was formed after realizing that there was a lack of quirky home decor items in the market. While the boob pots have been more around than most, they introduced their Lipscence line as a new design to the usual incense stick holders and went further with the 7-chakra wunderkind Blob the Builder, where customers can utilize with regards to the chakras, or the body’s energy points.

“My personal favorite would have to be the titbits holders,” says Justine. “They’re the little sisters of the plantatas, and the opener products for us. It really got our creativity riled up and bursting at the seams.”

Jonah, on the other hand, loves the Lipscence line. “It was such a unique exploration and I loved that we veered away from the typical incense holders, plus the colors are super cute!”

But ultimately, like any other brand mother would say, they adore all their labors of love, and expressed that they enjoy the business most because they get to bask in different forms of art. “More than our united pursuit to really run a business, we created ClayLab because it was our way of really showcasing how much we love art and its many forms.”

Thinking ‘Pink’ for October

The sisters have also shared their tatas for a true cause for Breast Cancer Awareness Month and join many other businesses in spreading cognizance, both for those who are fighting an ongoing battle with the disease and for the rest of those who have the ability to prevent it.

“Despite the seriousness of COVID-19, breast cancer has been continuous and has been around for much longer, yet there are those who are still not aware of how to prevent it and there are those who are fighting to get cured,” says Jonah.

“As women, we want to show support and not overlook this very important cause. We wanted to normalize self-check so that we may become aware of our body’s ever growing changes. We also wanted to show that when dealing with an illness like this, it is important not only to strengthen the physical body but to take care of our mental health. This is so we can come through with endurance as a response to these trials,” adds Justine.

ClayLab offers a 10% discount to customers who have a pink ribbon added to their orders up until the end of the month. It’s a subtle reminder, if they may, to spread awareness in their own way, and is a badge to show support not just for October, but beyond that.

“Spreading awareness is an ongoing learning journey, particularly for us, and we look forward to helping educate more of the public as we move forward together.”

What does the future hold for ClayLab?

“Pottery class,” says Justine with a laugh. It’s been a long-time wish for her and her sister to really learn the craft, mainly because it will greatly help in creating more of their collections.“We originally planned to take up pottery classes this year because we wanted to do mugs and pots but due to the pandemic and unforeseen events we weren’t able to do so that’s why we decided to start out with polymer and air dry clay,” says Jonah.

Learning curves aside, the future looks bright for this dynamic duo and excitement is only abound as they envision the rest of their products.

“More ceramics, and maybe our own pottery studio,” they share. 

But for now, they wish to invite enthusiasts into their little odd world and they thank their frequent patrons for all the support. “We’re really lucky to be able to pursue our passion in the midst of this pandemic, and we are grateful for all the support that we’ve gained so far,” they said. 

So for these ladies, their abundance is shaping up real nice, but it’s nice to know we have a respite for the weird and outlandish now.

Join in on the freaky fun and check out ClayLab on Instagram here