We all love a craft workshop, so why not combine your next one with your wanderlust and give your crafty learning an international flavour by submersing yourself in another culture.
We’ve rounded up some of the best crafting holidays, where the beautiful surroundings will inspire your making…
Knitting in Iceland
Pack up your needles and go on an icy adventure with this amazing trip, which combines Icelandic knitting with walking on glaciers. This trip of a lifetime, for the more adventurous knitter, takes in a walk on the Sólheimajökull Glacier, a dip in the mud pots and hot springs of the Smokey Valley and even a chance to glimpse the northern lights all while indulging your passion for yarn. Accommodation is in a picturesque country guesthouse surrounded by sheep, where you can learn traditional knitting techniques with locally produced wool.
“I believe the best way to preserve traditions is to continue using them in different contexts, giving them new life,” explains tour guide and knitting tutor Hélène Magnússon who runs a variety of tours throughout the year. “I’d never have imagined when I started the tours five years ago that this concept of mixing together hiking and knitting would attract so many amazing people from all over the world!”
Cost: £694 for the six-day tour and includes materials and full-board accommodation (flights not included).
Location: Reykjavík, Iceland
Dates: Knitting on Ice runs 31 October – 5 November
Shoe making in New York
Make like Carrie Bradshaw and combine your love of shoes by learning to make your own high heels in the hustle and bustle of New York City. I Can Make Shoes who offer bespoke shoe and bag making courses in east London to the most stylish of American cities. Their three-day intensive shoe-making course will teach you how to make a pair of flat, mid or high heel shoes from start to finish.
Whether you’re making for fun or want to learn the skills to start your own footwear business, this course gives you all the info you need. Plus the Brooklyn Shoe Space which hosts the course also runs tons of workshops from leather working to weaving workshops, which you could tag on to your trip.
Cost: $800 for the Start Your Future in Footwear course which runs 10am to 4pm each day. All materials are included .
Location: Brooklyn Shoe Space, 224 Roebling Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Dates: Courses run throughout the year
Mosaics in South Africa
Combine a week full of mosaic making and creativity with some sightseeing in one of the most beautiful cities of the world, Cape Town.
Staying in a gorgeous lodge in the Atlantic Beach Golf Estate, when not learning all the skills you need to take home your own African inspired mosaic, you can explore the local area. Enjoy excursions with the group including trips to local markets where you can buy your own beads to incorporate into your designs. There’s also a wine tasting tour and the beach is just 10 minutes away!
Award-winning Dutch mosaic artist Karla Duterloo leads the six-day course and will help you every step of the way to create your own masterpiece. “We use various mosaic materials from the African Continent. Your designs can incorporate Traditional Beadwork from Africa, handmade glass fusions, glass beads and various mosaic tiles – and off course lots of colour,” explains Karla.
Cost: €1600 per person, includes half-board accommodation, excursions and some materials (flights and transfers not included).
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Dates: 23 – 29 October
Pottery in Croatia
Relax in a beautiful Croatian fishing village while learning the art of raku pottery with a holiday that’s as far away from the hustle and bustle of the city life as possible!
Mornings are spent getting confident with clay with help from tutors Julie and Tim, while afternoons can either be spent exploring the beautiful island of Brac, taking a dip in the sea, wandering through the olive groves or simply heading back to the studio to continue working on your creations.
You’ll leave not only feeling relaxed, but with the skills to create your own glazes and pottery and even how to build a raku kiln at home. After lunch your afternoons can either be spent exploring the beautiful island of Brac, take a dip in the sea or wander through the olive groves or head back to the studio to work on your creations.
Cost: £845 per person for a seven-day trip and includes accommodation, transfers, tuition and materials (flights not included).
Location: Brac, Croatia
Dates: Seven-day workshops are available in June, August and September
Jewellery Making in Italy
Soak up Italian culture, indulge in gorgeous food and learn techniques to make your own jewellery on this six-day holiday to the heart of Italy.
Using your stunning surroundings as inspiration learn how to craft bracelets, earrings, necklaces and brooches using a variety of materials from glass to leather and all the techniques you will need to carry on the craft back at home. When you’re not making you can relax by the impressive infinity pool overlooking the rolling hills of Tuscany or even take a hike in the surrounding countryside. Just be warned – you may not want to leave!
Cost: Prices start from £1449 per person and includes full-board accommodation and materials (flights not included).
Location: Pisa, Italy
Dates: 1 – 7 May
Textiles in India
If you’re looking for a trip that really goes off the beaten track then Colouricious’ textile holidays are perfect for you. Offering embroidery, block printing, quilting and textile art in locations across India, these unique tours give you the chance to explore rural villages, local techniques and immerse yourself in an explosion of colour. It really is a feast for the senses.
Led by expert guides, the Textile Embroidery Tour of Gujurat is not to be missed. During the 14-day adventure you will visit a wide variety of creative locations from exploring textile museums to meeting local artisans who work in a variety of mediums from weaving to embroidery. Travellers also get the chance to learn how to block print and dye fabrics in workshops hosted by local makers. We want to go now!
Cost: Prices start from £2,850 and include half-board accommodation, tuition, materials, flights and transfers.
Location: Gujurat, India
Dates: 14 – 26 October
Crochet in England
Get away from it all and spend the whole weekend with like-minded people, doing what you love – crochet! Stay in a luxury bell tent for the ultimate crochet glamping experience and let Ruby from Frank & Olive take care of the rest. Come and learn how to crochet and meet designer-makers who’ll teach you craft skills in workshop over the weekend. Also enjoy delicious nibbles included in the weekend getaway price…
Cost: Prices start from £150 and include accommodation, tuition, materials and meals.
Location: Deighton Lodge or Mill House, Yorkshire
Dates: May – September 2016