On location at Fosse Farm - Alice Cartalet's house from Kinmoza
Date: Sunday 7th July 2013 [8:19] | Posted By: Joe
For most otaku it would be a dream come true to be contacted by an anime studio wanting to use their home as a location in a new anime series. For Caron Cooper, it is just the latest unlikely chapter in her incredible life story.
Caron was contacted last year by Genco and asked if they could use her Fosse Farm B&B as the home of Alice in the recently released anime series Kiniro Mosaic, also known as Kinmoza.
Kin-iro Mosaic is a 4 panel manga about a Japanese school girl Shino who befriends an English girl Alice while doing a home stay at Alice's home in the UK. The story covers the group of girls adventures in the UK and in Japan.
We caught up with Caron over tea and scones in April, before the show was broadcast on Japanese TV.
Caron is a fascinating character. While Otaku News brings Japanese culture to the English speaking world, Caron does the opposite, bringing the best of British to the Japanese. She teaches cookery courses in Japan, teaching Japanese ladies how British home baking is done and explaining the finer points of British tea-etiquette. When she's not in Japan educating Anglophiles, she runs a B&B from her farm house - Fosse Farm.
The episode set at Fosse Farm is when Alice and Shino meet for the first time at Alice's home in England. Studio Genco chose Fosse farm because they wanted a location that was instantly recognisable as British. They wanted Alice's house to look traditional and vintage. While they were visiting Fosse farm, the studio filmed around the farm house and selected some locations for the show.
It is uncanny how true Alice's house is to Fosse Farm. The room layouts, the decorations, the outside scenes are . Caron said it was strange it was to see her house animated, it's not something you'd expect to happen!
Here is the front door, even with the same welcome sign.
Some of Caron's decorations also appear in the anime, like this Japanese wind chime at her front door.
And this teddy door stop is which can be seen as Shino enters the house for the first time.
Alice's room is the one of the guest rooms in Fosse Farm, and you can book a night there and stay!
In the show Alice's dad drives a vintage Morris Minor based on Caron's car. "My Japanese guests love it, they all go 'Kawaii' when they see it."
The production crew that visited Caron spoke very little English. They shadowed Caron for a day and watched her do her day-to-day things. They watched and learnt how to bake scones. The scene is recreated in the anime when Alice and Shino make cakes.
They were keen to capture all the details of everyday English life, including filming a pair of pyjamas and slippers. It was important to get the attention to detail right.
The production crew also walked down to the nearby village Castle Combe, which is a well known countryside get-away and was recently used to film the movie War Horse.
As fans of Japan overseas it's not often we to get visit locations in anime. Our visit at Fosse farm really made us feel like we'd entered the idealised England from Kin-iro Mosaic.
While sipping my cup of tea, I ask Caron about the jam she's picked to accompany the scone. "That's my special jam, it's from a damson tree in my garden, I can only make enough for my farm house really."
The idea of the special jam reminds me of the special blend of tea from The Cat Returns, while eating tea and scones makes us feel like we've been thrown into the world of K-on. I wonder if there are Totoro in the woods near her house?
Kinmoza is currently available to watch on Crunchyroll.
You too can book a stay at Fosse Farm or enter our competition and win a chance to stay there yourself!