Painting floral pattern on calico and linen with Sarah Campbell

Ref: S3D31739

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About this course

Explore hand-painting flowers onto textiles using heat-fix paints and inks,. Learn how to develop designs for fabric to wear, sit upon or sew into.

Course Description

In this course we will be looking at and hand-painting flowers and floral designs directly onto fabrics. We will learn and explore how paints and inks behave on fabric, and what part colour plays in the patterns and designs we create. Starting with simple observational drawings, you will work towards making more complex designs on fabric – to wear, hang, sit on, use in the home, to sew into and embellish, or to enjoy simply as samplers.

Examples and for-instances will be drawn mostly from Sarah's own body of work, as a renowned designer of printed and painted textiles, stationery and decorative objects.

We will have freshly cut flowers and leaves in the studio to study and inspire provided from the cutting garden at West Dean Gardens, and you will be able to take time in the gardens too.

You are encouraged to bring a little reference of favourite colours, cloth, drawings, designs and/or photographs of flowers, as a starting point. And if you have favourite paint brushes, please do bring them along too!

We will use heat-fix fabric paints and inks, which remain colour and light-fast when ironed


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • On this course the tutor will provide fabric paints, foam brushes, sponges and some other equipment for use during the course, together with lining paper, one metre of calico and 0.25 metres of linen fabric.

What students need to bring

  • Any items on the list below which you already have
  • Apron or overall to protect your clothes, covered footwear

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • Gouache paint, brushes
  • A3 Sketchbook/paper, pencils and a ruler
  • Available from tutor:
  • Additional fabric supplies (calico and linen) by the metre, if required for those who wish to purchase some extra.
  • Also 10mm foam boards supplied to work on if you wish to take them home after the course.

Additional information

Wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio, this includes stout covered footwear i.e. no open-toes or sandals. Safety boots, if specified.


Sarah Campbell portrait

Sarah Campbell

Sarah Campbell co-founded the renowned textile design company Collier Campbell; she has always worked as a painter of patterns. Now practising under her own name she makes design for clients from the high street to one-off commissions; she gives talks, workshops, teaches, writes a blog. Her starting point remains the hand-made mark.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

Courses of interest

Further study options

Take the next step in your creative practice, with foundation level to Masters in Fine Art study. 

Depending on your experience, start with an Online Foundation Certificate in Art and Design (one year, part-time), a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design made up of 10 short courses taken over two years (part-time) or advance your learning with our BA (Hons) Art and Contemporary Craft: Materials, Making, and Place (six years part-time). All will help you develop core skills, find direction in your practice and build an impressive portfolio in preparation for artist opportunities or higher-level study. See all degree and diploma courses.