The moment Emma Sutton drove down the bumpy farm track to Mosney house, she knew the place was special.
The over grown hedge rows were teaming with robins, blue tits and an assortment of finches who seemed to fly out ahead of her as though guiding her on to Mosney grounds. Once on the land, Emma immediately got what she describes as ‘an almost spiritual feeling that she was home.’
On seeing the old Barn, both Emma and her husband Dave immediately fell in love with the place. Emma says, ‘ we walked into what was then an old poison store for the market garden business that had been run from the grounds, and we could almost see the furniture.’ In fact the pair immediately went home and drew out exactly how they would renovate the barn and where every piece of furniture would be.
During the renovations, the family uncovered Mosney’s rich history. Mosney was the site of a former print works, known as Mosney Print works. It was in operation from 1780 to 1788, and in this small space of time, Mosney Print Works made great progress in cloth printing. Thomas Bell of Mosney invented his “new and peculiar*” method of printing up to six colours at a time, with copper plates, patented in 1783.
Further improvements were made to Bell’s idea, leading John Slater, a calico printer of Mosney, to patent a press “for printing 1-2-3 or more colours on cotton etc*” just two years later in 1785. This invention paved the way towards modern day fabric printing, and was a sign to Emma that she should bring print back to Mosney.
With stunning new surroundings and a newfound inspiration, Emma picked up her pencils and began to draw animals from the gorgeous scenery she was immersed in. A range of whimsical animals began to emerge, each with a story and a special place on the family’s 11 acres of land.
Most of Emma’s family moved to Mosney, each building their own house on the land, and each adding to the endless inspiration found at the old Print Works. Members of the family who share this idyllic land include Emma’s mum who is lovingly known as Mosney Nanny, Emma’s father who feeds Reg the pheasant every day and Emma’s sister who also calls Mosney home. The children of the family all enjoy the country lifestyle, helping to look after the rabble of animals Emma lovingly and, in her husband, Dave’s opinion, rather too enthusiastically collects!
Emma adores nature and aside from her domestic animals, she has developed a bond with some of the wild life, looking out for them and sharing cherished moments in their presence. These treasured moments have inspired her homeware range and, with her father and husband as fellow directors, has led her to launch Mosney Mill.
* Ref: Hunt, D. Carnegie Publishing Ltd, 1997. A History of Walton-Le-Dale and Bamber Bridge. Pg104.
MEET MOSNEY MILL’S ANIMALS
At Mosney Mill there are so many beautiful animals roaming the grounds, each with their own loveable characters, many of which have inspired Emma’s collections.
Here’s a note from Emma to introduce each one to you!
Meet Mosney Bob! I love robins. After a really sad time in my life a little robin followed me around for days. Every time I left the house he was there twittering away, bobbing from fence post to fence post, making me smile & filling me with hope. Bob twitters to me each morning from the tree above the chicken coop. He watches me tend to our rabble of livestock, knowing all too well I’ll have a handful of seed or a mealworm or two to leave on a fence post for him. Bob adorns a selection of Mosney Mill goodies. He’s a real feature here at Mosney, and I hope he will become a much loved part of your home too.
The very first time I set foot on Mosney ground, it was so over grown you really couldn’t see more than a few metres in front of you. I was walking Finlay our Labrador and two Roedeer leapt out majestically in front of me, if I’d held out my hand I could have touched them. I don’t know who was more shocked, the deer, myself or Fin! There haven’t been many days since then, that we haven’t had a visit from the deer. I regularly sit in the garden sketching & photographing tem. A collection of these sketches appear on my wallpaper and Deer fabric ranges. The deer head image appears on a range of Mosney goodies with a gently humorous play on the word ‘deer’. My particular favourite is the “Take a Note Deer’ Exercise book.
I hope you enjoy him.
Meet Reg and his friends! My dad works tirelessly on the land, clearing ditches and building wildlife attractions. One of his most successful additions to Mosney has been a large pond with an island on it. Moorhens and Mallards are regulars, but this year a family of Canadian Geese who usually visit in spring to rear their goslings on the river in front of us, decided to use the pond as their nursery. My kind dad took to feeding them all, using an old tin chicken feeder. Every morning he would set off across the fields’ with an enamel bucket full of duck feed. He’d never get more than a few meters into his journey before Reg and his harem of lady pheasant would appear from the woodlands and waddle behind him. This was a wonderful sight to see and it gave me many wonderful opportunities to sketch Reg in all his splendour. By the time autumn arrived he was a slightly rotund but very pleasant pheasant indeed!
My mum and dad love the Pheasant range. The wallpaper adorns their dining room overlooking the fields where Reg regularly roams.
Bird & Butterfly
This design was inspired by the springtime view from my studio window. I’m lucky enough to see directly into the canopy of a hawthorn tree. It’s a hive of activity in there, full of all kinds of bid life. It’s a guilty pleasure of mine to sit and stare into their little work, dipping biscuits into my cup of tea while I should be working!
At the moment I have been really strict with myself and not allowed many of my plans for this range to see the light f day, but wait until spring & like the blossom on the hawthorn tree and the bird life it harbours, this range will explode onto a magnificent range of goodies, and I can’t wait!