Embroidery with Caroline Zoob

June 25th – July 2nd, 2019

To join us for a fabulous week of hand-embroidery and mixed media workshops please visit our contact page 

The Workshop

The main focus of this week is on hand embroidery, building pieces from rough sketches and ideas, using fabric paint to map them out and then allowing time for detailed and needle painting throughout the week. Caroline will show how using paint on fabric can lend perspective to an embroidered landscape, as well as providing different backgrounds for simpler embroideries. 

Over the course of the week, you will work on two larger scale embroideries, possibly a wildflower meadow or landscape inspired by the surrounding countryside, and one other piece, as well as a mixed media piece on the same themes but using antique papers, machine stitching and various media including gesso, wax and paint. Tackling the same themes in these very different ways will hopefully inspire different approaches to your stitching.

As well as the larger projects, Caroline will devise one or two smaller projects using beautiful vintage fabrics and papers, so that you go home full of fresh ideas and inspiration. 

With a small group of no more than eight participants, each person will receive plenty of individual attention. The large, airy and, if the weather demands it, air-conditioned studio is at your disposal for the week, offering a work table for each person and an array of beautiful materials provided by Caroline.

The days will be broken up into periods of tuition and periods of rest, and during the latter you may use the beautiful swimming pool or find a quiet and shady spot in which to read or carry on stitching.

We will also plan a couple of informal outings to local villages and hopefully take in a local brocante or market.


Caroline is a self-taught embroiderer with no formal art training. After school she trained as an opera singer, and then qualified as a solicitor. She discovered antique textiles and took up stitching in her late 30s, when her work was spotted by Country Living magazine. Her first show in 2000 sold out and now her delicate, painterly embroideries and collages made from antique papers are much sought after. Her first book, Childhood Treasures, was published in 2004. She has designed children’s bed linen for a leading UK brand, as well as ranges of ceramics, wrapping paper and cards. Caroline and her husband were tenants of Monk’s House, the former home of Virginia Woolf, for ten years, and her more recent books The Hand Stitched Home and Virginia Woolf’s Garden contain embroidered work inspired by the garden they restored and maintained on behalf of the National Trust. Caroline is hugely inspired by the countryside and the natural world. Now an experienced teacher, she enjoys devising new workshops and regards teaching as a process of sharing her keen observations, skills and materials generously and, in doing so, helping people to unleash and follow their own creative instincts. Her hope for the week of embroidery and mixed media workshops is that they provide a condensed mini-foundation course, offering the chance to try new ideas and techniques and develop the confidence to come up with an idea and take it for a long and productive walk.

Click here for Caroline’s website

Staying at La Balie

Built in the stunning mellow stone typical of the Lot-et-Garonne, La Balie is a collection of beautiful 16th Century farm buildings three of which have been converted into light and airy cottages containing a total of eight charming bedrooms each with their own luxury bathroom. Each of the cottages has its own sitting room, fully equipped kitchen, satellite TV and WiFi.

Fluffy white towels, swimming towels and complimentary White Company products are provided and there is a hairdryer in each room. 

Click here for more photos and information on each cottage

Food is a passion at La Balie and we’ll hope to share that with you during your stay. Freshly baked breads and pastries; colourful, healthy and innovative menus; delectable aperitifs and mouthwatering cheese boards all await! A selection of wines from our local vineyards will be served each evening.


After a full morning’s teaching and a delicious al-fresco lunch, there will be plenty of time to relax by the pool, swim, read or relax before returning to class later in the afternoon. Caroline will be on-hand throughout the day to teach, advise and encourage!

Included in your course is a visit to the stunning village of Monpazier – a bustling bastide village where there are many charming shops in which to browse and where we’ll stay for lunch.

Travelling to La Balie

La Balie is in the Lot-et-Garonne, 50km south east of Bergerac. There are several ways to travel to La Balie – by air, train or car.

The following airlines fly into Bergerac: British Airways, Flybe, Jet 2 and Ryan Air.

For those of you who prefer to take the train, there is a TGV direct from Paris to Agen which takes 3.5 hours and from where we can arrange a taxi to collect you at an additional cost, or you can connect onto a local train to Monsempron-Libos, where taxis are available.

Hiring a car
La Balie is set within 10 acres of garden, meadow and woodland and is surrounded by beautiful rolling countryside. The peaceful, rural setting means there are no villages within walking distance – if you would like to explore the local towns and villages we recommend you hire a car at Bergerac airport. Most of the major car hire companies are represented at the airport and a good comparison/booking site can be found at www.rentalcars.com

Arrival and Departure times
Please arrive any time after 4.00pm on June 25th but in time for supper which will be served at 7.30pm on the first night of the course. The course ends after breakfast (10.00am) on July 2nd.

Course Fees and Deposits

Course fees range from €1,700 to 2,300 per person depending on your choice of room.  

Large double with ensuite (inc. a bath)          €2,300 (2 rooms available)

Standard double with ensuite shower            €2,150  (5 rooms available)

Twin room with ensuite shower                       €2,000 (1 room available)

 Shared Twin room with ensuite shower        €1,700 per person (1 room available) 

 Non-participating partners                              €1,000


Payment Terms:

A non-refundable deposit of €500 is required to reserve a place on the course, with the balance of the course fee payable by April 25th, 2019.

Bookings taken less than two months before a course starts will require full payment

Please let us know as soon as possible if you are unable to attend the course. If we are able to re-sell your place we’ll refund any payments minus your initial deposit.

We recommend you take out comprehensive travel insurance, including cancellation insurance, before booking your course.

What’s included:

  • Daily tuition from Caroline Zoob
  • All course materials (fabrics, paints, antique papers, embroidery threads etc)
  • An excursion to a local village including lunch 
  • Time to relax, walk, swim in the pool, read
  • Seven night’s accommodation at La Balie
  • All meals and wine

Click here to request a booking