If you’re not from Sheffield or you don’t live here, there is, admits Kate Webster, a fair chance you won’t understand her range of greetings cards.
They feature jokes, quotes and reference points unique to the city. Her best seller shows two goldfish talking about the Hole In The Road. “I wonder what happened to the people,” says one.
“I think people like that because it’s almost a secret joke,” she says. “It wouldn’t sell very well in Leeds.”
For now, West Yorkshire matters not.
For mother-of-two Kate - using nothing but her home computer and skills learned at a Frecheville Library Photoshop course - has created 24 different cards for celebrations such as birthdays and anniversaries. And less than a year after the first one - an image of the Tinsley Towers replaced by pints of real ale - went on sale, they’re selling in their thousands.
Especially popular have been designs featuring old nightclub signs (The Limit, Roxy, Josephines), a cartoon take on The Greasy Chip Butty Song and one which compares the Arts Tower’s paternoster lift to the world’s most thrilling theme park rides. A big seller in the run up to Valentine’s Day showed a bottle of Henderson’s Relish, a pie and the words: “you complete me”.
“Proof Sheffield is a romantic city,” the 42-year-old of Crosspool tells The Diary.
It’s been quite some success for someone who had never designed anything until starting that library course. She went along to learn new skills but never dreamed that would turn into running her own cottage card industry. She’s named the business Tipsy Towers Greeting Cards.
And it’s quite some success too for someone who’s originally from the wrong side of the Pennines.
“I moved from Manchester 23 years ago to come to university,” she says. “So, obviously I’m still an incomer.”
Now, she hopes to expand her range with more Sheffield designs - a Yorkshire pudding-inspired Tour de France card is coming soon - and more from other towns, including Rotherham.
“I enjoy doing it,” she says. “I’m thrilled people like them.”
* Visit Kate’s website at tipsytowers.co.uk