FOR actress Katherine Parkinson, reprising her leading role in hit comedy, Home, I'm Darling, has been an emotional and at times painful experience.

Following last year's sell-out success at Theatr Clwyd, Laura Wade's dark comedy about sex, cake and the quest to be the perfect 1950s housewife, transferred to the National Theatre and a West End run at the Duke of York's Theatre, where it picked up a prestigious Olivier Award for best new comedy.

Following its critical acclaim, the production has now come 'home' to Mold, giving local audiences another chance to see the award-winning play that has its roots firmly in Flintshire.

"I feel like my body needs a break from wearing high heels," laughs Katherine, who spends the play resplendent in vintage clothes. "But arriving back in Mold has been very emotional. I've not been back here since we were here a year ago and it's made me reflect on the whole period.

"On the first night back I was the only original cast member on stage and I felt very proud to be bringing it back having not missed a show. It was a very happy time when we were first here setting it up and the play was very informed by those first audiences. Being a new play in its embryonic stages it's quite malleable and goes through changes every night according to the audience, so I feel like it was created by those first previews in Mold - it was made in Wales in more ways than one."

As a co-production between Theatr Clwyd and the National Theatre, Mold's role in Home, I'm Darling can't be overstated, with everything from the comedy's kitsch set designs to its retro costumes created by Clwyd's in-house team and the play itself directed by the theatre's artistic director, Tamara Harvey.

"The costumes are such a big part of it and the women who made those costumes put so much care into it," says Katherine, 39. "I felt like if it had been made in London they would have hired more clothes, but they were so proud and it was the best costume fitting I've ever had. I wept at various points and was very appreciative of their work. It's a unique thing to have a theatre that makes theatre in the fullest sense."

Katherine has appeared in several TV comedy series, including probably her most famous role as Jen Barber in Channel 4's The IT Crowd, for which she received a British Comedy Best TV Actress Award in 2009 and again in 2014, and a BAFTA TV Award in 2014. Other credits include Doc Martin and Humans not forgetting her TV adverts for Maltesers alongside fellow actress and comedian, Amanda Abbington.

"This play has been at the back of my mind since Laura first said she'd write it seven years ago," says Katherine. "I remember thinking it couldn't possibly live up to my expectations, so it's really exciting when you look forward to something and it does deliver.

"Winning the Olivier Award was really lovely and I felt like a lot of people who ended up on stage at the ceremony had gone through special experiences and I felt very pleased to be part of it - the fact we were nominated and there to celebrate that felt enough.

"Saying that, I'm looking forward to this Saturday when we finish the run in Mold because there's a different kind of pressure at the Olivier Awards - you feel like you've got to keep your lipstick in place, so it will be nice to just let loose on a Saturday night!"

Trying to explain the reason's behind Home, I'm Darling's success, Katherine implies she felt like it was a timely production with an amazing team behind it.

"Tamara really went for it in terms of production," she says. "The sets are amazing, the lighting is amazing and the songs are all amazing. The play itself is about a lot of things and is actually quietly subversive with a high concept - from my point of view it was a massive privilege to have someone write it for me."

Last year, Katherine turned her talents to playwriting for the first time in her extensive career, with her debut play, Sitting, currently enjoying its London run at Arcola Theatre.

"My priority when I get back to London is to go and see it because I've not been yet," she laughs. "My next job after that will be appearing in Chekov's Uncle Vanya with Rupert Everett. He took me for lunch and I had a feeling I was going to like him and I fell in love with him on the spot. Working with people you love is the way forward."

On the face of it Katherine barely seems to take a break despite having two young children with her husband, actor Harry Peacock, but she insists that acting has actually helped her being a working mum.

"I'd never want to miss bedtimes," she says. "One of the reasons I like doing theatre is that I can be up to take them to school and I can be at home to hear about their day before heading into the evening. Despite being a busy actress I still feel like I'm working part-time - even when you're filming it's unusual you're in every day. We don't have any formal childcare and manage it all ourselves and it's a privilege to be able to do that.

"Tamara is changing things in theatre too: we all rehearsed between 10.30am-4.30pm so we could spend time with our children and we won an Olivier. It's a lesson in how the working day doesn't all have to be about killing yourself to make it work."

With just a few more days in Mold, Katherine is preparing to leave Flintshire for the second time and it's clearly somewhere she's grown very fond of.

"I'll miss walking past the Time Travellers vintage shop in Mold, which is obviously up my street," she laughs. "I love the Glasfryn and the Fat Boar and I really hope I can come back one day."