The day before (and inspired by the Great British Bake Off), I decided to make some cakes to take with me as gifts. I started by making a batch of carrot and walnut cakes with cream cheese frosting.
Then I made a big batch of toffee and date cupcakes, which were topped with buttercream, chocolate crunchies and Thornton's fudge.
I packed a tin full of cakes to give to the lovely ladies of the Happy Stampers club, in appreciation of all their hard work (as volunteers) in organising the show at Port Sunlight twice a year. The labels were made with Waltzingmouse stamps from the Rescue Remedies set stamped with Memento dye inks and cut with Spellbinders Labels Four dies.
The photo below shows the reverse of the labels. I used Waltzingmouse Stamps - Country Labels 4, a sentiment from Tag Collection 1, the smallest cupcake from Frame It and the question from the Eat Cake set. The tops of the tags were completed with the addition of pairs of tiny grommets cut from the folding tag die set by Waltzingmouse Cutting Edge Dies. My lovely personalised tree stamp was a birthday gift from my daughter Jessica and was made by My Rubber Stamp in Texas, USA.
I had bought some pretty cake boxes from Morrisons supermarket. Each held four cakes and I tied them up with plum and pink organza ribbon and made the co-ordinating tags as above.
I hardly slept that night, but I was up bright and early to set off to Port Sunlight. I travelled by tram and bus to Manchester then a train to Liverpool, followed by a second train to the pretty village of Port Sunlight. Even the railway station below looked pretty!
The village of Port Sunlight was built by the philanthropist William Hesketh Lever (later Viscount Leverhulme) at the end of the 19th century in order to house workers from the nearby Lever Brothers soap factory (now the global company Unilever). Over thirty architects were employed to build the model village, resulting in buildings that were both beautiful and unique. The half timbered building below is used as the local tea rooms and is directly opposite the railway station.
The red brick building below has an unusual octagonal shaped tower and is situated to the far end of the road at the right of the photo above.
Opposite, this lovely building has plenty of character, with leaded windows and black pebbles inset in rendered panels between the stonework. The surrounding hydrangeas looked beautiful too.
This row of half timbered houses leads down towards Bolton Road, where Hulme Hall (the historical venue for the stamping show) is located. Unfortunately in my excitement to meet up with Penny and go inside I forgot to take any photos of Hulme Hall itself.
Once inside I distributed cupcakes to the Happy Stampers, a box to Jill and Sarah at The Stamp Man and a box to Claire and Sandie at Waltzingmouse Stamps. Now I had room in my bag to shop!
The photo below is of the lovely Claire from Waltzingmouse stamps and myself, which Penny kindly took for me. (This one is especially for you Jeanne)! Then I put my camera away and promptly forgot all about taking any more photos as we were so busy catching up, chatting and of course shopping!
I had the best time ever and really enjoyed the company, talking stamping all day and acquiring lots of new and interesting products to add to my stash! All the artwork samples were outstanding and there were plenty of demos to watch too. We loved what Sarah Anderson was doing with the Frantage kits at The Stamp Man and Penny and I bought a set each so that we can try it at home ourselves.
The rest of the photos below show my crafty haul from the show (there are quite a few of them, but please don't tell my husband)! First we have four packs of A4 pearlescent card, an 8" square Christmas paper collection, Graphic 45's 12" Twelve days of Christmas paper pad (at a bargain price) and four of the gorgeous Lili of the Valley NitWit collection pads.
These are the dies (Lawn Fawn, Impression Obsession and Spellbinders), alphabet stencil (Tim Holtz) and tree skyline mask (Clarity) that I bought.
Below are a set of transport stamps and matching dies from Clearly Besotted - our eldest Grandson will love these as he is fascinated by planes and helicopters. The pack of ribbons was a freebie form Clearly Besotted too. On the right are the Zigzag background and Splat That stamps which I bought from Waltzingmouse. Claire added a lolly and some love hearts to my bag - you've got to love free sweeties!
Those of you who know me well will also know that I love Waltzingmouse stamps very much - so you may be thinking that I was very restrained in only buying two stamps from there. However, you would be wrong, as I have to confess to placing an order for the new releases just last Sunday and they arrived on Tuesday - see below!
Other stamping purchases included the new Merry Christmas stamp and Chocolate gilding flakes from Kay at Indigo Blu, a JustRite Butterfly vines background stamp which I had been coveting since it was released and a very large and deeply textured Impression Obsession seashell and starfish background stamp.
Our next visit was to Lavinia stamps where I bought two packs of SceneScapes background cards and two very detailed stamps. I can't wait to use the tree branch stamp together with the new squirrel dies for an autumnal card!
We both bought a spray to assist with die cutting intricate shapes (I hope it works). I also got a new Archival inkpad, a Gelatos set (reduced) and the Frantage encrusted jewel kit that I mentioned earlier.
Finally, I visited Paper Artsy just before the show closed and added to my collection of Fresco paints and Treasure Gold waxes - Spanish Topaz (top), White Fire (middle) and limited edition Lilac (bottom). The stamp and swivel clip were freebies from Mark and Leandra :)
I suspect that I shall be on a stash ban for the foreseeable future, but I have plenty of new goodies to
play work with and I am inspired to start creating again as soon as possible. If you have managed to read this far - thank you very much!