I thought it would be useful and fun to have a thread where share teapots that we've bought in the last few months (so no showing us bargins you got 8 years ago to depress us!) that cost less that $50 USD or €38 / £35.
Here is one to get started:
When I first saw this pot I was uncertain. My nightmare is paying $$ and getting something that can't be used at all because it's covered in gunk, smells bad etc. Clay can develop a sheen from "high firing" from pottery glaze or from substances added after firing such as wax, paint or shoe polish.
100ml capacity. Marketed as "Chinese Yixing Zisha very mini teapot"
** "high firing" is desirable to some extent.
** a glaze means it's isn't true to the yixing ideal, but if it's not glazed on the inside it can still function well for brewing.
** things added after firing are just scary.
I could nto tell which it was so I asked the seller. She responded that it was "like this from firing" so, though I take the seller word with a grain of salt I bought the pot. ($8 + $3.50 shipping = $11.50)
So, what did I think of it when it came?
I looks nicer than in the pictures. The surface is matte on the inside and slightly shiner on the outside, but the sheen is a part of the clay itself. There are flecks of white in the clay and inspecting the rim shows they are embedded in the clay. The pot has no funny smells or issues. The porous matte inner surface absorbs the water nicely, calming the raw young sheng I've designated it for.
So, I call it a winner.
I'll post about a "loser" in a moment. I've bought 5 teapots in the $10-50 range (including shipping) 3 were "winners" the others.... not so much. I enjoy the process of hunting for pots that meet my criteria, but I'm wary of claims about age and provenance. I just assume all such claims are false and focus on the pot itself.