Textile Re-Treats

Treat yourself to a holiday in sunny Eastbourne and take one of our 3-5 day courses. Courses are organised on the page chronologically.

Scroll down to find courses with exceptional artists and teachers:
New courses in 2018 with Claire Benn and Debbie Lyddon are now available, and dates are being finalised with Caroline Bartlett for a return with her popular course on Surface Structure and Jo Budd has promised to come back with her different approach to using thick and thin dye paints.

Like us on FaceBook to get immediate notification of new Re-Treats as they go live. Facebook link: Studio11 Eastbourne or contact Christine via the Contact Page and join the mailing list.

These courses will be fun but intense learning experiences and you will leave with plenty of practical knowledge to take into your own textile work. The classes are limited to 8 students, each getting a 2m print bench to work at. And you get a buffet style lunch – highly recommended by students from previous Re-Treats! And if you are still not sure – read some of the feedback in the comments section at the bottom of the Home page

To book a place on any Re-Treat, or make suggestions as to tutors who you might wish to work with on a Re-Treat, please use the email form on the Contact Page
For recommendations for accommodation, please scroll to the bottom of the page.


Read about Debbie


30 MAY – 2 JUNE 2018           £400 + materials

Just 1 space left….

An experimental workshop that explores the construction and decoration of 3-dimensional forms.
Using your own source material, you will look at structure with drawing and model making, and experiment with materials such as paint, gesso and wax to stiffen and support cloth to make 3-D forms. Decoration techniques will explore non traditional ways of using these materials and will include: encaustic techniques, stitch and applique. The workshop will include time on the beach collecting and documenting objects for study.
This workshop gives you the opportunity to play with materials, to discover and to make.


Read about Claire

The Garcia Method on Cellulose Fibres

18 – 22 JULY 2018             £500 + materials

Just 1 space left…..

Having studied with Michel Garcia, and undertaken a great deal of sampling and exploration using his methods, Claire now uses natural dyes to achieve plain wholecloth and cloth with imagery through the use of surface design techniques with the mordants. This workshop will be tailored for the use of natural dyes on cellulose fibres only, and will enable students to:

  • Appreciate pre-treatment of the cloth to enable flexibility in mordanting, and to increase light-fastness of colours
  • Understand and experience the three key mordants of Ferrous, Aluminium and Titanium
  • Produce a range of sample charts showing what colours these mordants (and combinations thereof) produce from different plants (and guidance will be given on some key plants in terms of colour ranges)
  • Explore liquid and thickened mordants with various surface design techniques
  • Use citric acid as a mordant discharge, prior to dyeingThe workshop will also introduce indigo using the Garcia ‘1-2-3’ method; a sustainable, organic indigo vat which is environmentally friendly, easy to use and incredibly easy to maintain – a vat which can last years – if not indefinitely. With blue in the spectrum, we can travel into limitless colour possibilities. And, combined with the use of soy wax resist, we can also introduce surface design in conjunction with indigo.

Experience Level: the perfect introduction for those who are new to dyeing with plants on cellulose fibres. Suitable for beginners and although a level of chemistry will be discussed, it’ll be in layman’s terms!


To request a place on any of these courses, please e mail Christine using the e mail form on the contact page Your name will then be added to the list and you will be asked to confirm your place and pay a deposit 6 months in advance of the course starting.

A deposit of £100 is required to secure your place, which is only refundable up to 3 months before the start of the course. At this stage you will be asked to pay the full balance of the course. Any materials fee that is required for the course is based on tutor requirements and studio supplies, and is paid for on the first day of the course itself.

Once the full balance has been paid, your place can only be cancelled and refunded if I am able to fill the place from the waiting list.


There is a set of self catering cottages in Wharf Road itself, about 100m from the studio! I have been shown around Bo’s Holiday Cottage which will comfortably sleep 3 in 2 bedrooms (1 twin and 1 double) and seat 3 in the rather bijou sitting room. It is clean and well appointed. It has exceptionally high ratings and the owner seems very nice. A group of students stayed there last year in June and were very pleased with the accommodation. There are also 2 other cottages in the same Courtyard – Wendy House and Stable Cottage. They have similar layouts and have both been refurbished as has Bo’s Cottage, but I have not seen round these. But they are so convenient for both the railway station, restaurants in town, and the Studio itself.

Another recent recommendation for self catering apartments is Congress Apartments – newly refurbished to a very high standard and will take short term bookings, even one night! But that may be off season only.

There is a highly recommended B&B about 10 minutes walk away from the Studio – follow the AIRBNB link: Spacious room with Balcony  One of our students stayed there during the colour course and really enjoyed the facilities and the family she was staying with.

We now have a Premier Inn in the centre of Eastbourne about 10 minutes walk away from the Studio.

Several students have stayed in Ravilious Hotel and thoroughly recommended it for its breakfasts, and its cleanliness. It is also only about 10-15 mins walk from both the station and the studio. But it does have quite a few stairs, so perhaps not suitable for anyone with knee problems.

As this is a holiday town, there are also a wide range of hotels and B&B’s to suit every purse! Watch this space for more recommendations!

2 thoughts on “Textile Re-Treats

  1. I’ve just been on the Caroline Bartlett course and loved every minute of it. It was very well structured and thought out, full of fascinating information and little gems of helpful tips. She is a lovely tutor, warm and passionate about her work.
    There was plenty of time for practical work though I personally am a slow worker….food for thought will be continued in my studio!
    Studio 11 itself is a great place, so close to the station, which was excellent as I commuted every day, and very well equipped.
    Christine provided delicious lunches, which were a real treat and it was lovely to have a small intimate class.
    If you need a welcoming creative retreat and some “Me time”, this place is well worth a visit….!
    Christine- had you thought of having Cas Holmes?

We welcome comments about our courses, ideas for new courses, and experiences of existing ones: