Goodbye Memberships, Hello Classrooms!

This photo on the left is of my studio, also known as the Wooden House, and the place where most of our recent video workshops are recorded. In this photo it’s super tidy and set up for a workshop, trust me, it doesn’t usually look as neat as this!

It’s been a while since we’ve held in-person classes here in the studio, but we love welcoming you here virtually every week with our online video workshops. We can hardly believe it, but we’ve been teaching online for nearly 20 years! Over that time our online program has evolved into what you see on the website today.

In recent years we’ve offered Memberships to the site which for a long time has worked successfully as a way to give you access to our paid-for workshops. Gradually this year we’ve been making the transition away from Memberships to a new and much more flexible system. Let me tell you more…

We’re really excited about the new direction for our online teaching. As you might have seen already, we’ve gradually been introducing Classrooms to the site. These are the places to go to find the workshops on the subjects that you love the most. We are very proud to offer quite a diverse range of topics here at DesignMatters from quilting, through hand dyeing, drawing, painting, printing, all the way to sketchbooks and altered books. Of course that broad spectrum might not appeal in its entirety to all our lovely customers, so we wanted to provide a structure that gave you the maximum flexibility in choosing our workshops. So now, instead of buying a Membership, you can instead ‘pick and mix’ through any of our workshops in the Classrooms. Here are a few things to look forward to…

  • we’ll still be publishing lots of new workshops.

We know that many of you have had Memberships with us for years and we so appreciate your support. You’ve told us that you really look forward to your weekly creative ‘fix’. We’re still going to be making lots of new video workshops.

  • more choice

Because you aren’t locked into a Membership, you can choose which workshops you want to spend your money on. So if you love sketchbooks, you can just buy the sketchbook classes, or if you love hand dyeing, just indulge that passion. Of course, if you love it all, just like us, then nothing changes, you can go for everything if you want to!

  • new topics

We’ve often been asked to make workshops that cover techniques such as digital drawing on iPads, digital embroidery and quilting. While we’ve touched on these aspects of our work in the past, we felt that because not everyone had access to, or wanted to use technology that it wasn’t something we could go into depth on. Now with the new system, if digital stuff isn’t for you, you can just ignore it. But if it is right up your street then great news, look out for workshops coming this autumn.

  • forever access

With the old Membership system you used to get access to a rolling playlist of workshops. When a new one was added, the oldest ‘dropped off’ the list. With the new system, everything that you purchase will stay on your account forever, you can watch the videos as many times as you like, come back to them months or even years later, and they’ll still be there.*

  • great value

We’re not increasing the price of our workshops. All individual workshops will remain at £1.50 each, with collections being multiples of that. Our aim is always to make our classes as affordable as we can and we hope that you find they represent great value.

  • convenience

Since we started talking about the new system one of the constant points that cropped up in feedback from you was the convenience that came with a Membership. You loved just having the workshops there ready as soon as they are published. We know, we liked that part too! Now we have to hope that you’ll be tempted to click to add a workshop to your account every time we publish one rather than you receiving it by default! To replace the convenience of the Membership, we’ve introduced Classroom Credits. You can buy these in a range of values to suit your budget. The credits sit on your account until you’re ready to use them, then when you see a workshop you want, click to buy it, use your credits and you’re all ready to watch. You might use your credits every day, once a week, every so often, it doesn’t matter, they won’t expire. You can read more about how the Classroom Credits work here.

Phew! That was quite a lot of info in one post, so if you’ve got this far, thanks for reading!

If you do have any questions you are very welcome to email us, as always, and we’ll be happy to help out. Please do come and visit the website often, we’ll be adding lots of new stuff as often as we can. To make sure you don’t miss anything, we’d love for you to sign up to our newsletter. You can do this at the bottom of this page. You’ll see you can choose to sign up for all our updates, or a weekly round-up, whichever suits you best.

Thank you again for your continued support. We love sharing our creativity with you and seeing everything that you make in return.

Love Laura and Linda.

More to enjoy

Sketchbook to Stitch: Eye of the Beholder

Laura talks about her recent digitising project and shares a few tips on how to translate a sketchbook design into stitch using software.

Portrait Artist of the Year: The Exhibition

Take a look at some of the highlights from the Portrait Artist of the Year exhibition at Compton Verney.

Fashion and Embroidery in Art

Take a look at some paintings from the British Portraits room at Compton Verney and explore how the artists represent the garments of the sitters with a particular focus on embroidery.

Reuseable Bottle Bag

Make a smart and reusable bottle gift bag. We’re using cork fabric, but you can use anything from your stash.

Christmas Plant Pot Cover

Add a stylish touch to your Christmas gifts this year with a handmade and reusable plant pot cover. Just perfect for gifting that Poinsettia and making it look extra special!

Conceal/Reveal

Folded inserts such as prairie points are a fun way to add texture and embellishment to your quilt making, but they can also be much more. Join Linda for a workshop on how you an use them to create an intriguing new dimension to traditional blocks.

To access this post, you must purchase Conceal/Reveal.

Peace and Love – Free Printable

We’d like to wish peace and love to you all this Christmas with this free printable painting by Linda. See how Laura has used it to make greetings cards and gift tags.

Beautiful Festive Bows

Add to your festive decorations with these beautiful bows that will last year on year. Laura shows you step-by-step how to make them.

Quilts: Resurgence

Quilts: Resurgence, an exhibition of quilts selected from The Quilters’ Guild Collection and co-curated by Pauline Burbidge features a quilt by Laura.