Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Goldwork Embroidery Class: Online, Self-Paced, and Affordable!


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Oh, oh, oh!! Here’s some exciting news for embroiderers who want to learn the basics of goldwork embroidery!

Lucy Barter, a Royal School of Needlework-trained embroidery instructor in San Francisco, has teamed up with Craftsy to produce Goldwork Embroidery: Essential Techniques.

Goldwork Embroidery Class on Craftsy

The class covers all the basics to get you started with goldwork embroidery:

Goldwork Embroidery Class on Craftsy - course description

And it’s a Really Good Class. I’ve not made it through the whole class yet, but I’ve gone through the first five lessons. I can’t wait to watch the last two when I can sneak them in this morning!

The class progresses at a really nice pace, Lucy is easy to listen to, and everything you need to know to get off to a great start with goldwork (and then some) is presented clearly and concisely.

Craftsy classes are video-based, so you’ll see all the techniques worked out in front of you in high-quality, professionally produced videos.

The classes are self-paced, so once you sign up, you have permanent access to it and can work through the class whenever you have time. You can rewind sections and watch them over and over again, if you want. You can even put detailed instruction on a 30-second repeat, so that you can watch them several times in a row.

You can ask questions of the instructor in the provided chat areas. (Normally, in the early days after the launch of a class, you’re more likely to get more frequent instructor interaction.)

And you also have access to the downloadable class materials, including instructions and supply lists.

Goldwork Embroidery Class on Craftsy

On top of all that, the class is Super Affordable. If you think about the cost of face-to-face instruction at regular workshops (which can run into thousands of dollars, once you factor in travel and accommodations), it’s more than just affordable; if you have an interest in goldwork, you almost can’t afford not to take it!

Here you have access to a world-class goldwork instructor, with all the basic techniques of goldwork unfolded right before your eyes – whenever you want. Think of it as adding a really good instructional book to your library. At less than $40, it’s a pretty good deal!

You’ll find the goldwork class available through the following affiliate* link:

Goldwork Embroidery: Essential Techniques – on Craftsy

Why not join me over there? Maybe we’ll bump into each other in the classroom!

Or All the Craftsy Classes?

Update, 2018: Craftsy is now part of a program called Blueprint, which gives you access to all Craftsy classes for as long as you’re subscribed, at a fixed low monthly price. You can try a 7-day free trial here. It’s definitely worth checking out, especially if you’re interested in running through all their hand embroidery classes!

*If you sign up for Craftsy through my links, I get a small kickback that helps support Needle ‘n Thread. Every little bit counts, you know! But even if I didn’t get a kickback, I’d still be recommending the class!


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(47) Comments

  1. Dear Mary

    Goldwork Embroidery class sounds a great class and really affordable at the moment it’s £19.16 which is really cheap I’m definitely thinking about participating as I can afford this. I like the fact that you can join in at your own pace and that it is online and video taught, which is great as you can re-watch anything you are not sure about and you are right about Lucy I’ve just listened to her on Craftsty and she sounds really easy. Thanks for sharing this information on a really affordable Goldwork class and great technique to learn.

    Regards Anita Simmance

    1. Dear mary

      I’m hooked I’ve taken the plunge and just joined and watched the first video it’s really good, look forward to the other videos, away the weekend so something to look forward to next week.

      Regards Anita Simmance

  2. Law of attraction! I was just wishing THIS VERY MORNING that I could take a class in goldwork! Thanks so much for the information!

  3. Oh, gosh, even with my terrible history of goldwork, I’m tempted!

    I really shouldn’t, though…

    I do have several leftover metal and metallic threads just sitting in that box…

    Pfft! Like I’m ever going to get any better at goldwork…

    But I do like Craftsy classes so very much…

    The credit card is right over there…

    P.S. Mary, my husband says you are a bad influence. (He is wrong, of course.)

    1. LOL!! If you want to get better at goldwork, it’s a good way to do it. The videos are really clear, and even though I’ve been doing goldwork for a long while, I think the class is worthwhile for me. Instructors all have their own little approaches to things, and these make classes profitable even when you know the techniques already. I especially like her instructions for preparing string padding, cutting purls, and the like. It’s a nice way to learn, especially if you’re a visual learner.

    2. I have caved and am enrolled…and while I haven’t taken a single stitch yet, I’ve watched the first two sessions, and am VERY impressed! And determined, as well…I SO want to make my dad a goldwork book weight for his Bible!

      You were spot on when you mentioned visual learning, by the way. Makes a big difference. So does having a good instructor, and Lucy explains things very well! Whoever is in charge of camera placement also gets a round of applause! They really paid attention to what the viewer needs to see.

  4. Oh, this is one I want to take for sure, but will have to wait to see if we can get internet where we are moving. It is truly the “back of beyond” and I am worried about that. The cost may make it beyond us. 🙁
    But, Craftsy classes are the BEST. I’ve signed up for a number of them and love them. They are so affordable and very well produced overall. And best part is, if it turns out it’s absolutely not for you, they refund with no problem (in the first month or so). I had one that was totally not at all what I expected and they were great. I highly recommend Craftsy. 🙂

  5. Mary, this looks so interesting!!! I’ve just joined Craftsy and signed up for the Goldwork classes. I used your link so hope this works for you. As always, thanks so much for researching, investigating, participating and then sharing with all of us.
    I really love the idea of having access to the classes, so we can play the video over again as much as we need to. I never ‘get’ anything new the first time! It will also be a great reference tool.

  6. Lucy was my instructor for the Goldwork unit of the RSN Certificated Course. You could not ask for a better teacher. I received the best assessment on the Goldwork of the 4 required disciplines.

  7. Hi Mary – thanks for the heads up on this. I am an EGA member and I’m always attracted to the goldwork and surface embroidery classes but typically they are expensive and with my minimal experience – just not a good gamble for me. This is a great way to get a “taste of ” goldwork. I am going to use your link to sign up so hopefully you will get credit. I presume there will be suggestions as to where to get said supplies for class. Perhaps you have a recommendation on where to find? Thanks Mel

  8. Mary, where do we buy the mellore, the velvet board, and various gold threads that are mentioned? The class sounds wonderful, but I am concerned about finding all the materials I will need. I know that I can request a mellore from the Royal School of Needlework, but don’t know how long it will take to arrive. The class sounds wonderful!

    Thank you,

    1. Hi, Dianne – You can actually make your own velvet board pretty easily – and it doesn’t have to be velvet. Any fabric with a nap works, but I wouldn’t use anything too fuzzy (like wool felt) – because the fibers can get stuck between the threads. Although, really, in a pinch, you could. One thing I’ve done that works well is use the inside of the lid of a small, flat tin and line it with velveteen, by gluing it in. Then, you can cut your metal threads and, if you’re not going to use them all right away (because you get interrupted or whatever), you can cover the lid with the base of the tin. You can do the same thing, even, with a small plastic container that has a flat lid. You don’t absolutely need a mellor, either. The tool can be used as a laying tool, but more than anything else, in goldwork, it’s used to prod metal threads into place. If you have tweezers, for example, you can use the rounded backend of the tweezers for the same thing. Any kind of tool that has a hard, roundish, flat base is good for prodding, if you need to. So it’s not really essential for the class, and as far as the cutting board goes, you can just make your own. Oh, hey, you know, at craft stores, they sell sticky-backed velveteen and the like. That would work great. Or even velvet mat board from the framing section – if you have a hobby store around that does framing, you can pick up a little square of velvet mat board, and it would do.

      As for the gold threads, here in the States, Hedgehog Handworks carries the most complete supply, here: http://www.hedgehoghandworks.com/catalog/metal_threads_index.php. In Canada, Berlin Embroidery sells them, here: http://www.berlinembroidery.com/goldworksupplies.htm and in the UK, you can buy them from Golden Hinde: http://www.golden-hinde.co.uk/33/home-GoldenHindeGoldworkEmbroideryWarrington.html or even directly from Benton & Johnson.

    2. Oh, and Lucy uses the mellor as a laying tool, too, so any laying tool will work, or, if you don’t have one, a very large tapestry needle can be used as a laying tool, too, to help guide your thread. The only type of laying tool that I’d avoid with goldwork would be a really sharp-tipped one, like the BLT. The sharp tip can snag or break gold threads, so something smooth with a blunt tip is the best bet.

  9. This is great news! I have more Craftsy classes than you can imagine and when they send me those surveys I am constantly telling them to add HAND embroidery classes. So excited! For those who are concerned about their internet connection…Craftsy does have an app for the iPad. You are able to download the lessons and watch them offline. This is something I use when traveling. So…download your lessons where you have free WiFi, like a coffee shop or bookstore, and then watch at your leisure.

  10. Mary, thank you for the heads-up! I clicked straight over and purchased the class. It was only $29.99! I’m really excited as I have been admiring goldwork designs and kits, but am not willing to try them without some basic demonstrations, as well as instructions. Problem solved inexpensively! You are the best!

  11. NEWS FLASH! I signed up for the class using your link, and the price charged was a “SPECIAL” at $29.99 !

    Off to the craft store for that velveteen… oh, FUN!

  12. I know! My heart skipped a beat! I’ve recently visited an exhibition in my home town on embroidered church attire through the eras. It was EXQUISITE, all the goldwork… you needed a microscope to distinguish the stitching! I’m so excited to enroll in this clas… but first… waiting until it’s 50% off, probably around Xmas. 😀

  13. Agony! I would dearly love to take this class, but I have way too many projects backed up right now. I will have to give this some thought. I know I can sign up and then take it anytime, but….. I don’t know if I should spend the money now. Arrrggg!!
    While I writhe in agony and indecision, let me just say thank you so much for providing these notices Mary. Please — do keep doing it. I won’t always have the backlog of projects like I do now. (Right? they have to be cleared up at some point, right?)

  14. I would love to take the goldwork class on Craftsy. I have had a hard time finding the threads to do goldwork. I looked on Craftsy but could not find any place to send a comment. I would like to purchase the materials first to be sure I can get them. Do you know how I could get a copy of the places where I could order the supplies or some way to contact Craftsy?

    Thank you for letting me know about this class. Any help you could give will be appreciated.

    1. Hi, Mary – You can find all the threads used in the class at Hedgehog Handworks in the US: http://www.hedgehoghandworks.com under metal threads, and at Berlin Embroidery (if you’re in Canada, or want to order from Canada) at http://www.berlinembroidery.com. If you’re in the UK, you can find them at Golden Hinde http://www.golden-hinde.co.uk/33/home-GoldenHindeGoldworkEmbroideryWarrington.html, or directly through Benton and Johnson or Golden Threads.

  15. Hi Mary, I want to sign up to the Goldwork Embroidery class. I can’t get through via you link. I would like you to receive a small kickback. I have been able to get to the sign up page by going directly to the Craftsy website. Do you have any clues on how I can sign up through Needle ‘N Thread?
    Cheers Dianne (South Australia)

  16. Have bookmarked and will definitely take this class. I’ve been wanting to learn Goldwork for a while (just need to get some money together and some other projects out of the way).

  17. Hello Mary,

    I would like to thank you for the generous write up you have given my Craftsy class, I really appreciate your kind words, and hope that I inspire you and your readers to learn and create metal thread projects. Which by the way I would love to see!

    Once again thank you, and now I am going to find some time to stitch on one of my many unfinished projects!


  18. hi Mary
    Many thanks for the heads up.
    I have signed and joined up Craftsy.
    I dream since a moment to make Goldwork embroidery , these classes will complete the already bought books.

  19. What a great Craftsy class. Saw that this class is now on sale for $30. If you miss the back-to-school sale, Craftsy has sales regularly.

  20. Hi Mary,

    Wooohooo! 🙂 Just enrolled for the class through your link – or at least I hope it worked that way. Clicked your link, but then had to sign in ….. so hoping you get your kickback to help support Needlenthread. I’m looking forward to completing the design, but it has to wait until two other promised projects for someone else are completed first. Thank you Mary for the heads-up on this wonderful class!!

  21. Mary,
    Lucy described her class as intermediate. I can’t find a beginer’s class for Goldwork by Lucy on Craftsy. In fact, I can’t find another class for Goldwork on Craftsy.
    Does Lucy teach a beginer’s Goldwork class anywhere? If so, where can I find it?
    I’m considering purchasing her class just to look through the lessons at anytime even if the projects are too advanced for me.
    Thanks so much

    1. Hi, Linda – by intermediate, I think that classification is for embroiderers in general. If you’ve never picked up a needle, I wouldn’t necessarily start with that class (although, for many, with enough determination, it wouldn’t be a problem). If you’ve embroidered before, the class is a good introduction for goldwork, so in that case, I’d say it’s a beginner’s goldwork class for intermediate embroiderers, or people who have at least experienced some regular embroidery. Hope that helps!

  22. I watched the entire lesson on goldwork but did not see any mention of turning finished work on velvet into a pillow? I know one of the smooth pieces can crack. What about the other materials? I really have no interest in mounting work. Only interested in pillows.

  23. Mary
    Have just returned from RSN ‘For Worship and Glory’ exhibition at Chester Cathedral in UK. If any of your followers are interested in silk shading/gold work and can get to Chester then this exhibition is a must. It just blew me away, I haven’t ever been that close to gold work before so have never appreciated how delicate this can be. Returning tomorrow to buy the exhibition catalogue and revisit exhibition and make some notes. Exhibition on until 28 February 2016.
    Regards Jenny From Chester

  24. Hi,
    I enrolled Goldworks on Craftsy. Excellent class. I love it, But there is no sale kits at Craftsy, only online resources.. I practiced with pearl threads & it’s not the same, lol. Fun! The Goldworks supplies are quite high prices.

    1. They usually are expensive but they are forever. Even so if you shop around (with care) you can find more reasonable prices.

      Here in Australia buying over seas was cheaper but the postage has crimped spending OS.
      As a practice and using the cotton thread, it will give you an idea of how a piece can look by making a mock up. BUT it is not gold. It will give an idea if you would like to do it in gold and pay the money.
      You might like to split and splice the cotton to make it a but thicker.
      Never say never. MM

  25. Mary well done for getting in with Crafty.
    There is so much on offer and I have bought a couple and I can reiterate your statement of slow as you want,to as fast as ……!
    For Australian friends the $20s, is USA but I can say for the dollar difference you are getting a very good bargain.

    The gold work is great and you can contact the tutor if you get a problem.

    When I first found Crafty I went through the whole lot. Just to see what was on offer.
    Well I did think that I may get permanent hunch over Methuselah like.

    It paid off as I bought a couple of the ones that would benefit me. For someone starting off and can’t go to classes. This is the way to go. For us older persons we can keep pace. Even the “I know it all” people I bet you find a trifle or two that you be happy to work.

    The tatting can be worked in with the beading. So there are two classes to start.

    Thanks again Mary
    Stay well and happy all

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