Handpicked for Handmade
It is exciting news for Shelley Wilkinson of The Hampshire Chutney Company. She is one of just eight producers invited to attend the inaugural Handmade Fair, presented by Kirstie Allsopp and to be held at Hampton Court Palace, 19-21 September.
Shelley explains that she was handpicked by the event organisers with whom she has worked previously on CarFest, a popular fundraiser for Children in Need (to be held this year at Laverstoke Park).
Shelley says: “Kirstie wanted a marquee with eight hand-picked foodies and I was delighted to receive an email saying ‘you’re invited, we’re handpicking you’. It’s such a compliment.”
Shelley is looking forward to the event which will include interior and vintage-style designers such as Annie Sloan and Cath Kidston.
It will be a great opportunity to showcase her own artisan produce: “I always try to take my whole range especially at ‘meet the producer events’. I will certainly be taking The Cheeky Chutney which is a great pickle for cheese or to add to a sandwich and winner of the Food/Drink Product of the Year in the Hampshire Life Food & Drink Awards.
Shelley recalls meeting Kirstie Allsopp at New Forest Show in 2011 when she had just launched her business. She established her own business partly because she believes that if you can’t find the ideal job to fit around family life, then create your own (although she admits it isn’t quite as simple as that), and partly in response to the vast amount of produce her father was growing in his vegetable garden a field away from her Hampshire home. It was much more than the family could consumer, so with a passion for preserving passed down through her family, Shelley was soon making chutneys, relishes and pickles. The Hampshire Chutney Company was born - and then along came the awards and prizes, and invitations and opportunities such as The Handmade Fair.
If you would like to visit the Handmade Fair, simply enter our competition to win a pair of tickets when you’ll also get the chance to meet up with Shelley.