Wood You Believe - It's Wonderful Woodland

 Wood You Believe – It’s Wonderful Woodland

 For me, there is something medicinal about walking through a wood. I don’t know if it’s the rustle of the wind through the trees, the feeling of stones underfoot or the smell of ‘earthiness’; but I find that it simultaneously helps to both ‘centre’ me and lift my spirits!

Perhaps that’s why I got a fabulous surprise this week when I walked into the Nicholas Mosse Irish Country Shop to find that the ever inspiring pottery presenting a new collection called Woodland.

 Inspired by the wood surrounding Susan’s home, this capsule collection of handcrafted ceramics includes the everyday plate, everyday bowl and tall mug. It’s both delightful enough to make a fantastic pottery gift idea for any child and contemporary enough to grace any modern dinner table, particularly when teamed with anything from the green lawn or landscape collections.

Over a large ceramic mug of coffee in the café, Susan told me that it wasn’t hard to find the inspiration for this collection – all she had to do was step outside her front door!

“My home is nestled in a wood so I’m always witnessing the antics of the animals,” she explained. “I wanted to create a collection that captured their essence, while being careful not to make them into cartoon versions of themselves!”

A move away from more traditional Nicholas Mosse patterns like Old Rose and Clematis, this collection uses a completely new colour palette and celebrates Irish woodland animals with hand sponged squirrels, hedgehogs, owls, hare’s and foxes.

For Susan, developing this collection was all about creating images that were both recognisable and universal and it took many, many iterations to get right. Listening to her chat about her creative process, I can picture all the developmental imagery strewn about her kitchen table and office desk… sketches of squirrels, watercolours of leaves, building images up so that they can be analysed and broken back down into their “essential” parts. Susan operates in 3D – she Deliberates (extensively), Designs (exhaustively) and is only satisfied when the results Delight!

Whether it’s an acorn, leaf, fox, hedgehog, hare, owl or squirrel, everything must be perfect to Susan’s discerning eye… and for very good reason. This is pottery that lasts for generations so its design must stand the test of time and delight its owners as much in 5, 10, 20 years time, as it does on the day it was received.

I look forward to wrapping my hands around my tall woodland mug for many years to come.

 - Leeann Matthews

Please note: Only Fox, Rabbit and Hedgehog are available for sale currently – squirrel and owl will be along shortly.