As I mentioned previously, I met Roger Saul, the original founder and designer of Mulberry when I went for the open day at Kilver Court a little while ago. He’s really lovely, full of energy and seems like a down to earth guy. He’s also a fellow country lover like myself, we both grew up and live in the country and I find it nice to know that just because you don’t live in the city, you can still be successful! You can read my interview below and I want to thank Roger for his time.
Lorna: I find it lovely that you grew up and live where I do, have you always loved the country? Yes born and bred here in Somerset, its hard not to love it!
Lorna: Did you always know you wanted to be a designer? No I wanted to be a racing driver! I did that in my spare time, but my love of fashion really started when I was 18 and then becoming a designer was a natural progression.
Lorna: I love the brand Mulberry, it’s one of my favourites. I’m so sorry to hear what happened to you and the company, how are you now, after it all? It was not a good time, very sad to lose contact with all those wonderful people that joined me as my team worldwide, but life has a great habit of knocking you down and getting you to learn how to pick yourself up and if that hadn’t happened I would never have had all the amazing experiences I have had since.
Lorna: Do you have a favourite Mulberry bag that you personally designed? Yes lots, but my favourite has to be my Roger’s Briefcase which I designed back in 1976 and still have.
Lorna: I heard that you might want to start up another brand, do you have any news on that? I’m sure so many of us will be supporters of it! Watch this space! You never know, but for the moment Kilver Court is a big project as well as my farm and organic food brand Sharpham Park
Lorna: Can you tell my readers more about your Kilver Court venture? I want to try and create a new form of shopping experience that embraces not just the best mix of eclectic Designers, but also recycled furniture and homeware, amazing gardens and plants, great local, seasonal, organic food all in one location in the wonderful old textile mill buildings at Kilver Court.
Lorna: Why did you decide to start it? It felt the time was right for this sort of experience in the country, I have always admired corso como in Italy which I found 18 years ago in Milano and that inspired me in spirit.
Lorna: I loved it when I came for the open day, the scenery is amazing and I can’t wait to go again. Do you own it all? Yes.
Lorna: As an aspiring denim designer, I want my own brand one day, do you have any advice on starting a company? Too much to write here! Believe in yourself and persevere!
Lorna: Lastly, you can include anything you want to talk about that I missed out 🙂 Have you tried our spelt? We launched a pop up shop in Harvey Nichols 5th Floor this weekend!
Lorna: Oh no I haven’t tried the Spelt, isn’t that a type of wheat? Do you grow it on your farm? Yes, we grow spelt at Sharpham Park. Spelt is not a type of wheat but a distant cousin. It is a cross between Emmer Wheat and Goats Grass and has a distinctive, nutty flavour. Many people are allergic or intolerant to wheat these days, which can cause some very unpleasant digestive issues. There is a large body of evidence to show that spelt is easier to digest than wheat and is generally better tolerated. Have a look at our website for more info on spelt www.sharphampark.com.
Lorna: I am coming to Kilver Court again soon so I will make sure I try some! Thanks Roger!! It was really nice to meet you and I think you are a wonderful and inspiring person 🙂 My pleasure!