Monday, 5 January 2015

Top 10 Ministry courses to put a Spring in your step in 2015

This is your year: 2015 is going to be great! Disposable fashion and mass produced homewares be gone: this year why not make your own clothes or furnishings, save money in the process and learn a host of new creative skills into the bargain?

The trend for Make Do and Mending continues to grow and at Ministry of Craft we are proud to help our customers take their first steps into the Craftiverse. As well as learning useful and practical skills, social crafting makes you happier! Whether it’s joining a local knit and natter group, or taking part in the virtual shared hug that is #MeMadeMay (a social media celebration of DIY dressmaking), getting together for a spot of making en masse is proven to be relaxing, therapeutic and it’s a whole lot of fun too!

So this January why not dust off your knitting needles, seek out your old sewing machine and make a New Years resolution to join the crafting masses?

We’ve got courses galore on our website, something for everyone no matter what your level of ability or crafty preference: sewing, knitting, printing, jewellery making and much, much more. Our most popular course has always been ‘Conquer Your Sewing Machine’, the perfect way to get started with sewing or to rekindle your love of stitchery (which may have lain dormant since your school days), but we’ve upped the ante in response to our dedicated customers’ calls to offer bolder and more challenging courses (Fair Isle knitting anyone?!).

We’ve got super cool classrooms at FredAldous (a brilliant art and craft supplies store, recently voted one of the top 5 indie shops in Manchester) which is located in the heart of the Northern Quarter. So after a morning of crafting with our expert tutors you’re perfectly placed for a bite to eat or even a fancy cocktail if you’re so inclined.

Here’s my top 10 pick of the courses we’ve got coming up in 2015 (between now and April), these are courses I have either been on myself or would like to try this year. For the full complement of all courses go to We look forward to welcoming you into the fold!

1. Sew your own tunic dress or top
Saturday 24 January

Wardrobe staples have a special place in every girl’s heart, and you NEED to make this one! Trust me, I have made two and I'm about to start my third.

2. Tailormade fabric lampshade
Saturday 24 January

If you want a bespoke look when it comes to lighting up your room, but can’t find the right lampshade, why not make it yourself? I made a shade for my baby daughter's nursery and I bodged it. I should've come on this course first!

3. Beginners Quilting: Snuggle or baby quilt
Sunday 25 January, 22 February, 29 March

I REALLY want to do this course in 2015. They say everyone has a ‘book in them’ - well we think every stitcher has ‘a quilt in them’ - and this gorgeous patchwork quilt is the ideal way to get started. Check out photos of our recent graduates here.

4. Knitting skills - How to knit Fair Isle
Sunday 1 February

What’s a winter without a bright Fair Isle knit? Come down to Ministry and learn the decorative techniques of Fair Isle Knitting for yourself. I'd love to knit myself a Christmassy jumper this year. FIRMLY on my list!

5. Beginners sewing: Classy clutch bag
Saturday 7 February

Perfect with any outfit, a clutch bag is an essential item of every girl’s wardrobe and now you can sew your own to match every outfit you own! I routinely borrow a bright orange clutch from a friend for all the weddings and parties I attend. It's time to make my own.

6. Introduction to curtain and blind making

Sunday 15 February

You can put up wallpaper and paint but can you suss out curtains and blinds?  Nope, me neither. This is the course that saves people HUGE SUMS OF MONEY because bespoke curtains and blinds don't come cheap. I'll be making myself a lovely long pair of yellow curtains this year, after I've attended this course!

7. Sew a gorgeous girls dress
Saturday 28 February

Make a little girl’s day with a gorgeous A-line dress! Perfect for the princess in your life. I've made a Red Riding Hood cape for my little girl, Sylvie, and I'd like to make a dress like this to go with it.


8. Beginners sewing: Patchwork Pouf
Saturday 14 March

At the end of a busy day there is nothing better than putting your feet up and relaxing, with this perfect handmade pouf. Mine is adored by the whole family. I LOVE this course.

9. Paperperfect: Decoupage jewellery

Saturday 14 March

Loved sticking and gluing as a child? Well now you can try the more sophisticated version as a grown up! Create your own ‘paper perfect’ jewellery and master the Fren
ch art of decoupage! My next target is a battered old sewing table - I'm going to decoupage it with vintage comics to hide the coffee rings!

10. Sew your own knickers!

Saturday 21 March

Don’t let your underwear let you down – simply sew your own knickers! Bring your knicker drawer to life with these fantastic briefs in our bright flowery fabric and stretchy scarlet lace. I can thing of nothing better for 2015 than sewing smalls with a group of strangers. Bring it on!


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