We live in strange times. As more and more craft festivals and gatherings are forced to close their doors this year due to the Coronavirus outbreak, we don’t want you to miss out. So we’re collecting this guide to the best virtual craft gatherings that are springing up in their place, or events that are operating on a scaled down, covid-safe agenda.
We’ll add details of all the online community events that we hear of to this post. Have we missed something? Email our team to let us know on email@example.com or share online with our hashtag #stayhomeandcraft
Craft Community Calendar
Beyond The Knitting & Stitching Show
Join in with an exciting programme of virtual experiences this autumn; including a variety of live workshops running over three weekends in November, a Self Portrait Competition, live instagram interviews with craft experts and suppliers and the Beyond K&S Shopping Hub. During November and December you can also join in withAutumn Shopping Weekends, packed with exclusive offers from your favourite craft suppliers so you get to treat yourself to textiles delivered straight to your door!
Festive workshop: how to paint your own botanical bauble
Saturday 28th November, 2.00pm – 3.00pm, £20
Join Becki Clark for the latest in the Gathered Learn to Craft series of virtual workshops. Becki will talk you through choosing a colour palette, practicing simple botanical motifs, turning them into a pattern, the basics of hand lettering and calligraphy to personalise your own bauble. Price includes a bauble kit which we’ll post to you before the event so you can join in live at home.
Click to register for the Painting your own botanical bauble workshop
The Handmade Festival
27 – Sunday 29 November 2020
Come along (virtually!) to celebrate all things handmade and get hands-on to learn new skills or hone your existing noes, all from the comfort of your own home. The 3 day programme includes live craft-along workshops taking place via Zoom including how to create ceramic and needle felt robin baubles, wrap the perfect present and make homemade Christmas crackers, as well as festive-themed brush lettering, origami and arm crochet classes. Sessions also include how to make Christmas cocktails and homemade snow displays, alongside Christmas cards, gift tags and wrapping paper using block printing.
Digital Crafts Festival
27 -29 November 2020
Meet 120 of the finest UK craft makers, enjoy free interactive workshops and shop handmade from indie businesses at the second 2020 Virtual Digital Crafts Festival. Click to find out more.
Beyond The Festival of Quilts
4 and 10 December 2020
Missing your annual dose of total quilt immersion at The Festival of Quilts? Check out these new Winter masterclasses from the Festival team to keep your quilt skills in shape while we wait for the Festival to return next summer! The team are holding 6 live Masterclasses brought to you by our Festival of Quilts expert tutors; Dawn Cameron Dick, Sarah Ashford, Kerry Green, Pat Archibald, Jo Avery and Gillian Cooper and quilt along live from the comfort of your own home via a digital Zoom tutorial.
YarnDale Worldwide Creative Project for 2020
While the yarn-lover’s favourite festival couldn’t take place in the flesh on 26th and 27th September as planned this year, organisers have launched a great community knitting initiative so that you can get involved from home and craft for a good cause. They’re calling on makers to knit or crochet homemade dishcloths which will be sold to raise funds for Martin House Hospice Care for Children and Young People. Find their free patterns, and full details of the project, over at yarndale.co.uk.
UK Hand Knitting Association Virtual Knitting Groups
Every week via Zoom
From 30th March onwards, the UKHKA will be running two virtual knitting groups a week on Zoom.
- Tuesday 11 am https://zoom.us/j/700450230?pwd=aFpmYWNrdTVPZHgzaTcwMmFlSmNoQT09
- Thursday 7pm https://zoom.us/j/338504392?pwd=elYvcENUL0NFKy9YaHBReDk4azM4QT09
Every Saturday via Zoom, 3pm US Eastern time (8pm UK)
Just because we’re physically distanced, doesn’t mean we have to be socially distant. Edie Eckman is hosting a weekly craft-along via Zoom. Bring along your current craft project, pour yourself a cuppa and craft along together. This is a family friendly event.
Join the craft-along via Zoom at: https://us04web.zoom.us/j/761079396?pwd=LytNeUpNMk5kSGZEWldrditoM0IzZz09 and head to Edie Eckman’s Facebook page for updates.
Stay at home and Sewalong
Every evening on Youtube
Join Sew Over it on YouTube every Monday to Friday to sew along with Lisa Comfort, have a chat with fellow makers, and keep busy with some fun projects. They are hosting a variety of sewalongs, from sewing some favourite Sew Over It patterns, to tutorials for complete beginners, and even craft projects for kids! See their schedule for what’s coming up, and you can join in live or watch later on the Sew Over It Youtube channel.
Stitch Happy Stitchalong
Thursday evening at 20.15 on Instagram Live
Take part in these group embroidery sessions every Thursday at 8.15pm on Instagram Live from 2nd April – catch up on previous weeks on the Stitch Happy blog. There will be a set embroidery project of eucalyptus and grasses which you can download for free from the Stitch Happy website. Find more details on the stitch along on the Stitch Happy blog.
The Yarn Whisperer Stitch & B*tch
Tues, Thurs, Sat, Sun at 14.00 or Fri at 17.20 on Zoom
All yarn enthusiasts, or any craft enthusiasts full stop are invited to join in with this virtual craft group. Sessions are 40 minutes long, and for the Friday session, cocktails are also encouraged.For more information visits The Yarn Whisperer website or see the Yarn Whisperer instagram. The Zoom code for the sessions is 474-874-831 for the 1400 sessions and 221-281-871 for the 17.20 cocktail session.
Tea and Crafting online workshops
If you are missing craft workshops, sign up for one of Tea and Crafting’s virtual workshops, covering, embroidery, crochet, knitting, calligraphy, quilting and more!. Classes are typically 1.5-2 hours long, and take place live , but you receive a recording afterwards to refer back to. Some classes require specific materials which are posted out to you ahead of time, or some need items from your own stash – there is a full list in each class booking section so you explore what works for you. Prices start at £15.50.
‘A Year Of Blackwork’ – 52 week blackwork Stitch Along
- Every Wednesday of 2020
For the whole of 2020, every Wednesday Peppermint Purple are releasing a free blackwork pattern on a special dedicated Facebook group. No worries about joining late, as the current chart will contain all of the previous weeks sections. Head over to join the page and chat to fellow stitchers who are sewing along.
Stitchonomy Winter Stitch-A-Long
24 December 2020 – 6 February 2021
Hosted several times a year, Stitchonomy Stitch-A-Longs (www.stitch-along.com) are free to join, all you need to do is sign up before the start, get your materials ready and share your progress with the Stitch-A-Long community. Because, after all, stitching together is best! The next SAL will be he Free Winter 2020 Stitch Along. Starting December 24th, a new pattern will be revealed every 3 days. This SAL will surely get you through those cold winter months! You can join up to a SAL that has already started, but you need to join The Pattern Club (starting from $5 a month). Find out more from Stitchonomy here.
Positivity Rules – Cross Stitch-A-Long
Stay positive with this modern typography cross stitch kits or patterns from Caterpillar Cross Stitch. This is a 5-part, mystery cross stitch-a-long project where thousands of stitchers worldwide unite and stitch one piece of this colourful pattern every month for 5 months. You’ll need to pay a one-off fee which includes all 5 patterns, but let’s face it we all deserve a little crafty positivity in our lives this year! You can buy a PDF pattern only or a whole kit with a variety of fabric choices. This SAL has already started, but you can join in any time – Parts 1 &2 already out, parts 3, 4 and 5 released each month on the 29th.
Royal Voluntary Service Virtual Village Hall
The Virtual Village Hall features themed video sessions led by expert tutors, TV and radio personalities and Royal Voluntary Service activity coordinators and volunteers. Live and pre-recorded sessions take place daily and include sewing, crochet and needlework, recipes and baking, exercise and dance, music and singing, relaxation and meditation, arts and crafts, technology skills, gardening and more. New sessions are added regularly. The charity’s hundreds of social clubs and groups, all organised by volunteers, are unable to meet during this time so the Virtual Village Hall programme is designed to bring people together to enjoy activities at the same time, to keep active and interested while at home, and to have fun. Thousands of people are taking part in Virtual Village Hall activities in their own homes and also in care homes.
Sublime Stitching embroidery companion playlist
Available on Spotify
To dip your toe in to the online world, why not listen to a curated playlist designed for crafters while you are crafting? Put together by Sublime Stitching, with soothing songs to listen to while focusing on some embroidery, knitting, baking, gardening, bathtubbing…anything that you find soothing to do, knowing that other crafters are doing the same. Click to find the Embroidery Companion Playlist.
2021 Diaries at the ready!
These craft events have been cancelled and postponed – but you can save the date now for next year.
24-25 April 2021
While we’re sad that this year’s event has had to be cancelled, we’re already planning a trip to Wales to check out their 2021 event next Spring. Find out more at wonderwoolwales.co.uk
25-26 June 2021
The Original British Festival of Wool has sadly been cancelled for 2020 completely, but there is a glimmer of hope for us yarnies – they will be back! Woolfest was founded by members of The Wool Clip cooperative to provide a celebration of natural fibres and a showcase for the best of wool and wool crafts. It is all about creativity and design with beautiful quality, amazing colours, skilled craftsmanship and a huge enthusiasm for all things wool related. Reach for your calendars and stick a big fat placeholder in June 2021 – we can party like it’s 2020. Maybe not but we can get our yarn fix on when this is all over!
The Festival of Quilts
29 July – 1 August 2021
It is with great regret it has become clear that it is not going to be possible for this year’s Festival of Quilts (30 July – 2 Aug, NEC Birmingham) to go ahead. Stay up to date via the Festival of Quilts newsletter here, and keep your eyes peeled for the upcoming Festival of Quilts online competition – we’ll add details to this page when we have them.