Art by Design

The School of Fibre Art

"The transformative power of art and craft drives individual fulfilment, enriches society, advances enterprise, inspires audiences, and champions new makers." (Crafts Council)

Established to amplify innovation, instil critical evaluation and reflection, The School of Fibre Art develops unique sophisticated craft ideas, and offers opportunities to curate, exhibit, sell work, and /or train to teach.

Academic year course

Contemporary, Advanced Level portfolio-based course designed to extend students skills in fibres, expand creative and intellectual identity and abilities. Short courses Structured for novice, emerging or advanced level crafter.

Program Lead

Gill Burbidge. BA (Hons), Dip FineArt, PGCE, Accredited Lecturer, Program Manager, formerly University of Plymouth, Cornwall College, Award winning artist and tutor.

The School of Fibre Art (SOFA) Offers Fibrecraft courses, 30 weeks. Feltmaking workshops, drawing and painting sessions.Newton Poppleford Village Hall, Nuno, 3D hats, tote bags, pictures, dyeing Contact Gill for more details.

Fibre Art Courses

The School of Fibre Art and Associates, offers a wide range of courses and workshops. Programmes designed and tailored to individual learners requirements, from novice to masterclass.

All tutors hold Nationally accredited Advanced Level Fibrecraft qualifications, are certificated lecturers and current practitioners.

Learners develop skills, and confidence, through tutorials, peer review, in addition to educational visits, engaging with breeders, processors, craft industry professionals, national and local show organisers.

Gill Burbidge was Craft Advisor to Creative and Cultural Skills (CCS) and contributor at Crafts Council Manifesto Launch, Palace of Westminster, Her Postgraduate Dissertation "Role of Art in Expansion of Identity" informs her teaching philosophy and practice.

A background in painting, Gill specializes in nuno feltmaking,in particular heritage wrap.

Gill Burbidge BA (Hons) Fine Art, Dip, PGCE,

University of Loughborough - Art and Design
University of Leicester - Advanced DipTheology
University of Leicester - BA (Hons) 2:1 Humanities
University of Plymouth PGCE
University of Plymouth DipFine Art


Arts grant for concept that felt making, the process and product, is a metaphor for social diversity. The award and context was Leicester(shire)  said to be the most culturally diverse city in Europe.

Gill was Craft Advisor to Creative and Cultural Skills (CCS) and contributor at Crafts Council Manifesto Launch, Palace of Westminster 2014


International Felt Makers Association
Devon Artist Network (DAN)
Blake Society
Double Elephant Print Workshop, Exeter


Lyme Bay Arts, Symondsbury

Artenax Topsham

Thelma Hulbert Gallery, Honiton


Exeter Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital  

Bicton College

Australia, UK, USA


  • Exeter Westpoint: Craft4crafters
  • Contemporary Craft Festival: Bovey Tracey
  • Devon County Show Craft Marquee
  • Exeter Westpoint: ICHF
  •  Wool Gathering, Buckfastleigh
  • Killerton House, National Trust
  • Lymebay Arts, Symondsbury
  • SOLO
  • Dartington Hall Trust

Book on a course 10, 20 or 30 weeks

Please note that the course and workshops are currently halted due to corona virus.

The portfolio-based 30 week (150 hr) academic year course, October 2020 to June 2021, covers a range of Fibre crafting techniques theory and practice. Skills covered include fibre identification;fibre to fabric; fabric-fibre manipulation; carding; painting and dyeing; eco printing; cyanotype, silk "paper". Feltmaking: 3D hats, bags, vessels; interiors; wall art; nuno felted wearables. Understanding: materials, tools,techniques, equipment.

Further techniques in free motion embroidery, organic dyeing and and needle felting sessions are offered as enrichment for nominal fee. The specialist tutors are both nationally accredited craft and teacher qualified.

The course is suitable for novice and experienced. Students expand their artistic identity, realise concepts through practice-based research, analysis, peer review, group and one to one tutorials.

Ten week feltmaking course : fibre identification, fibre to fabric, fibre into fabric, flat felt, 3D vessels, hats, pictures, nuno feltmaking wearables, embellishing and much more. Contact Gill for further details. Twenty weeks course includes range of dyeing techniques, eco printing

There are opportunities to curate, showcase and sell work at annual crafting events across the South West, in addition to building skills and confidence to demonstrate and/or teach in public and private.

Venue: Newton Poppleford Village Hall, Monday, 1000 to 1530,
Course fees: £900.00 to include essential materials.
Lead tutor: Gill Burbidge BA (Hons) PGCE, Fine Art Dip


Design and create sumptuous nuno wrap using finest merino, hand dyed lustrous fleece, silk fibres and fabrics for embellishing. Alternatively, a tote bag or picture using nuno pre-felt techniques.

10 am to 4 pm. Inclusive of essential materials £50.00

Saturday 2020 workshop dates

Contact Gill for further information. Email: or Telephone: 07816251133


Mooli Foodworks