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Workshop Information

Workshop sizes

Participant numbers in workshops are determined by the classroom size and in accordance with the COVID protocols in place at the time.  Teachers have also specified a maximum number of participants to ensure that they can actively engage with each participant and participants with each other.   The BERNINA longarm/midarm classrooms are restricted to 10 participants.  If you are keen to attend a particular workshop, purchase your tickets as soon as possible.

Half-Day, Full-Day or Multi-Day Workshops

Workshop duration varies between Half Day, Full Day and Multi-Day.  A Half Day workshop is 3 hours and is either in the morning from 09:30 to12:30 or after lunch from 14:00 to 17:00.  A Full Day workshop is six hours and consists of a morning and afternoon session.  Multi-Day workshops are either one and a half days (six plus three hours) or two days of six hours each.   A full-day workshop is a six-hour workshop within a single day.

A Half-Day workshop costs R200, a Full-Day Workshop costs R400 and a Multi-Day workshop either R600 or R800, depending on the duration.  Where kits are required, the kit cost is shown separately in the Workshop description, it will be included in the workshop price on purchasing.

Each workshop has a unique identifying code consisting of three numbers and a letter.  The first number indicates the day with 1 being the first Festival day, Wednesday 5 October and so on.  The next two numbers indicate the sequential class numbers on a particular day.  For example, Workshop 101 is Day 1’s first workshop.  The letter at the end indicates the workshop duration with “H” indicating Half-Day, S a single or full day and D a double or Multi-day workshop.

BERNINA Workshops

BERNINA Sewing Machines & Accessories are provided in Tilly de Harde’s Workshops.  No sewing machine hire is required. You can test the machines available by booking a time at the Bernina stall in die vendors’ mall. Read more... 


UFO Rooms

Go on a personal retreat and hire a space in a classroom to work on your projects.  There is no pressure to keep up or compete with others, just an opportunity to enjoy your craft and be with like-minded quilters, while still being included in the Festival fun.  Bring your own sewing machine, extension cable and adapter and whatever you require to complete your current UFOs – or search for inspiration at the vendors’ mall.  Book your day’s table from Wednesday to Sunday.


Workshop Requirements

To get the most benefit from a workshop, prepare for your workshop. The Student Requirements list is downloadable with each Workshop’s description and details.   Bring all the listed supplies for each workshop. If you forget to pack something in, our vendors’ mall is available with a large selection. 

Shopping Hours: 

Tuesday 4 October 14:00 – 17:00 (only open to pre-registered participants)
Wednesday 5 October 09:00 – 18:00
Thursday 6 October 09:00 – 18:00
Friday 7 October 09:00 – 18:00
Saturday 8 October 09:00 – 18:00
Sunday 9 October 09:00 – 16:00

Location:  Vendors are located in the hall and the classrooms in Block A.  Vendors can only be accessed through the foyer at the Registration Desk.


Kit Fees

Some workshops have kits available.  Contents of the kits and the prices are listed in the relevant workshop descriptions.  Compulsory kits must be purchased at the time of registration and is included in workshop tickets.  Participants can collect the kits in the workshop, none will be posted before the Festival.Where kits are indicated as optional and you decide not to purchase an optional kit, please include the listed kit items in your student requirements list and bring the listed items to the workshop.


Basic Sewing Supplies

Most workshops require Basic Sewing Supplies (BSS).  Here is a list with the minimum requirements that you can use as the basis for your own packing list.  Workshops may have an additional downloadable Student Requirement list.  Student Requirements are available on our website with each workshop description.  Feel free to ask if you have any queries.  Before packing your supplies, mark each item with your initials or name.  Remember to mark your sewing machine, cords, pedal etc.  Items get mixed up or left behind easily.


Ironing stations will be provided in all workshops where irons are required.  Please do not bring your own irons, including travelling irons, as it may affect the power supply.


Sewing Machine Hire

Thanks to BERNINA, Brother, Husqvarna, Pfaff, and Singer, sewing machines will be available for hire in certain workshops and must be pre-booked with workshop tickets.

  • Specific brands will be allocated to classrooms and cannot be requested on registration.  All the hired machines include all necessary attachments and presser feet for the workshop.
  • Please use all safety measures when working with any tool, and please be respectful with all provided or borrowed tools and materials.
  • Remember to bring your own extension cable with the correct adapter(s) for your machine for workshops requiring machine work, including workshops where machines are for hire.  Include a surge protector plug if your extension cord does not have surge protection.


Workshop Policy

Teachers have allocated complexity levels to their workshops.  We encourage students to stretch themselves; however, please check that you can meet minimum skills requirements.

A complete Student Requirement List is available on the Festival website for download with each workshop description.  Where workshops require pre-work, including specific cutting instructions, the instructions will be emailed to students after registration.

Keep your printed or downloaded workshop ticket on hand.  These will be checked before you are admitted to the class.


Workshop Etiquette 

For the most creative and productive Festival experience, please read the following guidelines for our classrooms.   

  • Classrooms will be unlocked by 09:00 daily.  Classrooms will be locked during lunch and again by 17:30 daily for security purposes.
  • Participants are encouraged to arrive early and settle in to be ready 10 minutes before workshops start.  If you are late, please try to catch up quietly and do not expect the Teacher to start over.
  • Arrive prepared for your workshop with all the listed requirements, including a clean and oiled sewing machine in good working order.  Insert a new needle into your machine and a sharp blade into your rotary cutter.  Remember your glasses and consider adding a (rechargeable) task lamp for handwork workshops.  
  • Teachers have spent long hours preparing exciting workshops to teach and expect you to be geared up.  Student requirement lists are downloadable from each workshops description.  Please do not expect to borrow items.  Not only is it a distraction in class, there may not be extra items available.
  • Do not expect a Teacher to take time from the workshop to teach you something different.  Review the definitions of skill levels before choosing a workshop.
  • Participants should refrain from wearing strong perfume as a courtesy to fellow participants sensitive or allergic to fragrance.
  • Respect fellow participants and do not talk while the Teacher is presenting. 
  • Cell phones should be silenced or set on vibrate.  Participants should excuse themselves from the classroom to use cell phones for urgent business only. 
  • Teachers hold the intellectual property and copyright to classes.  Please respect this and do not share class handouts and other materials with others not registered for the workshop or teach the same workshop without the teachers written permission.  Please check with the Teacher before sharing the workshop with others in any format.
  • Please ask the teacher and fellow students permission before taking photos in the workshop.  You must get the Teachers specific permission before photographing or taping his or her workshop and class projects.  Do not attempt to take flash photos of the slide screen. The photos will not turn out, and the flash distracts everyone else in the audience.  
  • Dress in layers due to differentiating temperatures within classrooms.  Although October is in spring, it may still be chilly.


Skill Levels

Use this guide to evaluate your skill level and select workshops suited to those skills.  There is an increase in difficulty, originality and design principles like colour, balance, and unity with each level.  You may be more knowledgeable than you realise!  If you need help assessing your skill level, please ask us for assistance.    

Quilt Skill levels:

  • All levels: This level is for quilters at all skill levels.  
  • Easy: First-time quilters could make the quilt making it ideal as an introduction to quilting or building basic skills.  You are off to a good start!  More experienced quilters who want a relaxed class, playing with fabrics can also do it.  You just want to have fun!
  • Confident: Quilters who are competent in the basics and are keen to attempt and master more intricate patterns and techniques.  Quilters can piece accurately, applique points and curves, hand quilt even stitches, and select different colour schemes.  These quilters may have attended regional or national festival level classes and even entered quilts into shows.  You are a proficient quilter!
  • Challenging: Experienced quilters who have mastered a wide range of quilting skills, can work on complex designs or free-motion quilting, adapt patterns or design their own and "fudge" problems —quilters who may have entered national or international shows.  You are looking for new challenges or advanced techniques.  The sky is your limit!

Crochet Skill Levels:

  • Easy: Projects may include simple stitch patterns, basic increases and decreases, repetitive stitch patterns, simple colour changes, and simple shaping and finishing.
  • Confident: Projects using various techniques, such as basic lace patterns or colour patterns.  Projects may include complicated stitch patterns, colour work, and/or shaping.
  • Challenging:  Projects may include intricate stitch patterns, techniques and dimensions, such as non-repeating patterns, multi-colour techniques, fine threads, small hooks, using various techniques and stitches simultaneously, detailed shaping and refined finishing. 

Classroom Locations (specific class numbers will be allocated just prior to Festival)

 The Bernina longarm classroom is situated on the ground floor in B Block.  Bernina will have long-arm and sit-down/midarm machines to test.  Pre-book sessions directly with the Bernina stall. Domestic sewing machine classes are primarily on the ground floor, and hand sewing classrooms are on the first floor. There are only stairs to the first-floor classrooms. Limited parking is available outside the classrooms; these are reserved for off-loading and disabled parking. Bring your “wheels” to make moving your sewing machine and student requirements between the parking or hostel and classrooms easier.

Waiting list

 We will maintain a waiting list for fully booked workshops.  If you would like to inquire about getting on the waiting list, please email  If space becomes available, you will be contacted by the Festival Registrar.  Wait-listed attendees are contacted in the order they have registered.  If there are enough people on the waitlist, we may be able to add additional workshop sessions.