Craft workshops are fast becoming our new favourite thing to do!
Life is all about experiences. Whether you want to learn a new skill or are looking for a perfect gift for someone else, a workshop is a great idea.
If you’re not that creative, or don’t have the time to commit to a lengthy course at a local college, that’s not a problem! Many people are taking the opportunity to ‘get creative’ and release their inner tensions in one-off pottery classes, botanical themed workshops, or an arm-knitting class for example. Many of us took up a new hobby during lockdown, and this is one way to stay mindful, release tension, and discover a creative side of yourself!
Truth is, there are so many different workshops out there, you are actually spoilt for choice.
Where can I find a good craft course?*
Of course, all courses are subjective – we all enjoy different things. There is no right or wrong on this, just have a go and see which events and workshops you enjoy the most!
Often, we discover new creative sides of ourselves, and something that you may have considered ‘not for you’ might just turn out to be your new favourite thing!
Workshops also make a great gift idea – in fact, more and more people are looking for experiences rather than material goods for gift ideas.
First up – we stumbled across a very useful website, CraftCourses.com. They list thousands of creative workshops across the UK, perfect for craft lovers. From their site, which has over 1.5 million users, you can link directly to book an event with the organisers / facilitators. Check out their stats below.
Why are Craft Workshops so great?
We spoke to three different people about running workshops: a facilitator, a market organiser who host workshops at their events, and a facilitator/venue provider for workshops. Here is a summary of what they said:
The Workshop Facilitator
Firstly, we spoke to Karl from Rooks and Roses, a talented jewellery artist specialising in silver and copper designs.
We discussed the difficulties in starting out and building up the tools needed to run a workshop, and Karl shared details of his forthcoming events and why he feels people should get involved in workshops.
We love his very personal approach to learning. Rather than being very specific about the outcome, Karl actively encourages his students to bring an idea to the course and then he can facilitate in the making of that piece. He educates students in the processes involved in working with their chosen metals, enabling the learner to really get involved and experiment.
Karl advocates craft workshops, regarding them as a treat to the soul and the senses. He shares that at the end of the weekend-long workshop with him, students can go home with as many as 4 pieces. View his courses.
The Market Organiser
We spoke to Kat, one half of the duo behind The Collective Market in South London. She shared their experiences of hosting workshops during their markets and why they felt it was an important part of their events.
Speaking frankly about the difficulties involved in hosting workshops, from the organisation to getting people through the door, we looked more specifically at the mental health benefits and the value in accomplishment, escapism plus the bonus of socialising and meeting new people.
Of equal importance are the opportunities which the team are providing for the facilitators themselves to get a captive audience of creatives that might be interested in taking part, but also giving the customers the awareness and space to ‘have a go’.
Their workshops cater for both adults (with botanical, food-lovers, and feminist events to name a few), and adult-with-child activities too, such as building a garden or toy-making workshops. Kat noted a particular couple who just loved the events so much, that they book on to them regularly. Whilst enjoying the activity together, they even challenge themselves to small contests to whom will create the better product!
Follow the markets run by The Collective on Pedddle here, with more events to be added soon.
The Venue Host
Their events book up exceptionally quickly, in particular their wreath-making events. However, with the inclusion of events aptly named ‘Painting and Prosecco’, ‘Foxglove and Fizz’ and ‘Bonjour Mon Amie’, who wouldn’t want to attend?!
These ladies are currently living their dream, creating beautiful events for the residents of Kibworth, Leicestershire, and beyond. It’s only an hour’s commute from London to this leafy village, with the offer of a ‘pick up’ service from Market Harborough station. It’s a real one-of-a-kind service.
Once you have met Jue and Lou (rather like Ant and Dec – it’s always that order!) and visited their barn, you will be enchanted by their workshop space, and like many of their visitors, drawn right back into booking your next event!
There is so much to be said about their other services too, such as Flower Friday and their beautiful cross-backed aprons, but if you click the links you can discover them for yourselves. View all events here.
Other workshops to discover*
Many of our Pedddle stallholders run craft workshops too. Check out some of them below:
Metamorphic Charm ~ Staffordshire
Silver jewellery workshops run by Nikola Woodhall.
Blue Stiggy ~ Lincolnshire
Michaela teaches hand embroidery and bookbinding
Ashes & Oak ~ Lincolnshire
Join ‘Make it 2 Break It’ workshops, which are about using clay work and creativity to improve mental well-being. Their craft weekends give participants a chance to have a go at wood turning and lots of pottery, glazing and firing techniques.
Today ~ Leeds, Manchester & Saltaire
Fun, friendly and informal simple silver ring making workshops for complete novices.
You can also see Testimonials from people who’ve attended here https://www.madebytoday.com/pages/testimonials
Crafty Sew and Sew ~ Leicester
Learn how to hand embroider a letter or initials onto Kiwi and the Bear’s unique tie-dye fabric, to create your own individual piece of art. Click here for details. A fun hands-on workshop, where you will enjoy learning a variety of modern tie-dye techniques.
Lark Design Make ~ South Wales & Cardiff
Creative workshops held both in their Cardiff studio & around South Wales in lovely venues. Workshops include leather crafts, Macrame, sewing & jewellery making – there’s a variety to choose from.
Textra ~ Oxfordshire
Offering workshops and courses on how to make beautiful home furnishings, tote bags, fabric wreaths and Roman blinds.
Bobbins & Bolts ~ Harrogate, North Yorkshire
Join sewing workshops, and there is also rentable craft space in the shop for up to 8 people, including sewing machines and overlockers. You can learn lots of different skills, from how to use a sewing machine up to drafting your own dressmaking patterns, along with patchwork, quilting and screen printing sessions. In the school holidays there is also an experienced children’s sewing tutor, who runs short sessions for 7-11 year olds.
Wimperis Embrodiery ~ all over the UK
Niamh from Wimperis Embroidery runs Feminist Embroidery Workshops which are open to all genders, ages and embroidery ability. Attendees choose from 3 workshop-exclusive designs, get to rummage through Niamh’s extensive thread collection, and learn 6 key stitches. Workshops are usually once a month, and Niamh also runs a subscription box – see her website below for details.
*Please note – all providers mentioned in this article are not endorsed or affiliated with Pedddle in any way. These workshops are suggestions only. Feel free to book but Pedddle have no responsibility beyond this note.