Still alive and Kicking – City and Guilds Creative Textiles Course 7161

City and Guilds Creative Textiles 7161

There have been many reports that the City and Guilds Creative textiles course is no longer available.  I am here to tell you that that is certainly not the case.  You can still study this wonderful artistic and accredited course here at Busy Bees Patchwork.  I have teamed up with a company called Linked to create with help from Margaret Walker the senior EQA at City and Guilds to continue to provide this course which was previously administrated by Newport adult education. Unfortunately due to the current climate and education cuts in this sector, courses such as these have been removed from the adult education curriculum among many other vocational courses.  A shame that that is I have, with the help from Link to create I can now teach this course independently from the local authority.

Now that’s cleared up let me tell you about the course and what it can mean for you as a creative person wishing to expand your knowledge of textile and embroidery techniques. Firstly it is an accredited course recognized throughout the industry. Whether you are seeking to make a living from your art and want to validate your knowledge gained in your field.  Seeking employment in the industry and broadening your skills for a position of work. Maybe you just want to brush up your existing skills and want to learn more about design and different techniques to expand your ideas.  This course is extremely diversified and encourages personal development along with learning how to promote yourself as an artist.

We have seen over the last 12 months how important creativity has been for our well being. The act of creating gives many health and therapeutic benefits and the craft industry has exceeded all expectations of how important art is to our world, not just commercially but personally.  We are beginning to recognize and appreciate art in a completely different view so much so that we now have programmes dedicated to it.  I have been watching Greyson Perry’s art club and it has been so refreshing to see the variety of art that people have produced over this pandemic and the way it has helped many to take up their needles and thread, brushes and paint, camera and all sorts of mediums to recreate how they have felt over these past twelve months.  All ages, all abilities we can all benefit from something that is integrally with in us to beautify our surroundings just as our ancestors learned to paint and make marks on cave walls.

The course, as it is constructed at the moment is run over 3 levels and takes 4 years to complete in total.  That does not mean to say you have to study all four years.  Each level is accredited separately and there is a natural progression from Level 1 through to level 3.  I will soon be putting up a description of the course on our website for you to see in more detail how the course is run and information of the contents, times and costs.

I would like to show you now some images of past students work. Over the past four years of teaching City and Guilds creative textiles I have been astonished by the work that has been created. It has been so exciting for me as their tutor to watch their progression throughout the course. Every week is like Christmas (except I don’t get to keep it 🙁 ) when they show me what they have been doing.  We learn a technique, it could be stenciling, machine stitching, hand embroidery, mark making, weaving, embellishing and the following week they have an amazing piece of work to add to their personal work/sketch book.



Always a fun and interesting session, mark making the most simplest form of design. You just never know what will happen a completely free approach with no defined idea of a subject. Totally abstract and totally fun. We use acrylic paints, paper and fabric to create organic designs to stitch into by hand and machine.




In your first year of creative textiles students are often surprised how much art work is involved. You don’t have to be a brilliant drawer or painter to create amazing backgrounds for stitching, and the course is intended to teach you how to appreciate the main elements of design.  Line, colour, texture are all studied in level 1 and shape and form are studied in more detail in level 2.  The elements of design are necessary to help you compose your stitched project.



We explore the colour wheel and how to appreciate colours to emote emotion, drama, subtlety etc. Colour is a powerful element when designing and sometimes one of the hardest things to understand but as the course progresses learning to use colour through all mediums you will begin to understand it’s complexities and make it work for you!


Creating texture in surface decoration.

Over the months you will develop your own library of techniques that will stand you in good stead for many different projects. I have to be honest, some you will love and some not so, but that is the basis of this course finding what inspires you and sometimes the experience of not liking a project is just as valuable a lesson to learn.  My aim, as your tutor is to help you find that creativity and develop it.  My role is to bring out the artist in you and provide you with techniques that will inspire you to produce amazing pieces of textile art.

This course, I will add is not for the faint hearted, it is a course developed to steer you into a career in the textile industry.  That being said if you do not want a career and an accredited qualification at the end of the year there is an option for you develop your skills without the need to complete the accredited part of the course. I am happy to discuss options and to answer any questions you might have about this course.

I hope I have whetted your appetite a little into the world of textile art. I will, over the next few months be adding photos to our website gallery of past students work with dates and times of classes that will be starting in September all being well with the current guidelines of covid 19.  I am a little tentative to give exact dates yet for this very reason.  For the past 12 months I have been conducting this course over zoom, so that may be an option too.  With that in mind I am hopeful of having an exhibition of the previous students work towards the end of August at Tredegar House in Newport.  I really hope that this will be able to go ahead because their work really deserves to be seen and you will be in for a real treat.

For further information about this course you can email me beccy@busybeespatchwork and I will be happy to tell you more about it and what this course can do for you.

Best stitches


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