Begin Your Creative Journey with the School of Stitched Textiles
For almost 20 years the School of Stitched Textiles has been delivering textile craft courses to crafters and creators across the world. From their humble beginnings as a needlecraft centre based in a quiet Lancashire village, the School of Stitched Textiles has become a globally renowned provider and one of the few centres delivering impressive distance learning courses.
The School of Stitched Textiles’ creative journey began back in 2000 when the now Head of Centre, Dr Gail Cowley established the school. With a specialism in Designing Textiles and Metal and a postgraduate cert in Education, as well as a PhD in e-Learning, Gail went about combining her expertise in both education and craft to deliver City & Guilds of London textile programmes in Embroidery and Patchwork.
After a few years the demand for courses far outweighed the teaching space available so Gail went about designing City & Guilds courses that could be delivered via distance learning - expanding their remit and their reach. Today the School offers an impressive range of textile based courses including knitting, crochet, hand embroidery, machine embroidery, stumpwork, textiles, felting and patchwork & quilting, across varying skill levels, making them the UK’s largest distance learning provider delivering City & Guilds accredited textile courses.
Gail says, ‘it took us the best part of five years to establish all of the courses we have on offer today because the approval process is so stringent. But certificated, accredited courses are vital for learning and expanding on correct techniques and encouraging creative ideas, which is why they are so important for those who wish to prove their skill level, either to themselves or to an employer or client. Our graduate students have gone on to teach, author books, design patterns or go on to study further education. For beginners we believe that a certified course provides the best possible foundations for those looking to begin their creative journey.’
The accredited courses on offer are a serious business. With the average course taking around one and a half years to complete (depending on the speed you wish to tackle tasks) they definitely have a lot to offer. Gail adds, ‘many modules on each of our courses encourage students to use different techniques, experiment with ideas and play around with their own creativity. More importantly, the courses are fundamental to nurturing creative confidence, allowing people to take their craft to the next level, whatever that may be.’
And it’s not just for serious artists and crafters. The school has recently established a range of online courses for absolute beginners which are all delivered through online videos. These promise to be great introductions to new crafts as well as a fantastic opportunity to meet the tutors, and gain an insight into the more advanced accredited courses.
Intake for the accredited courses is limited and they only accept new students during enrolment which opens between 3 and 4 times per year. If you’re interested in enrolling you first need to express your interest via their website which is the only way to be invited to enroll. The School are also offering some Creative Bursaries for those that may not have the finances to pay for an accredited course and these can be applied for via their website, at https://www.sofst.org/bursary-application and the deadline for applications is 15th April, but will offer more bursaries towards the end of the year.
Whether you’re ready to begin something new or really starting to go places the School of Stitched Textiles say they are ready to help you on your creative journey.