Goldwork Embroidery Masterclass

Opulent Embroidery for Art, Fashion & Textiles


Historically goldwork embroidery appeared mainly on garments for the very wealthy aristocrats and the church. Today it does appear in high end fashion. Once you do this 4 day workshop, YOU will be able to employ goldwork techniques on collars, pockets, epaulettes, large appliques, etc. Not only are the techniques amazing but the metal threads are spectacular. Goldwork embroidery may look extremely difficult, and it certainly is not for the absolute beginner in embroidery, but if you have done any form of embroidery, you will be able to achieve beautiful effects with goldwork.

First day – Mary will show you her own work as well as images of goldwork embroidery on historical and contemporary garments. Then Mary will demonstrate techniques specific to this very unique form of embroidery. You will do samples for each technique in the workshop. There will be some homework – mainly felt padding and string padding. These will be demonstrated in class and then done at home in preparation for the following class.

The techniques you will learn come from military uniforms, matador jackets, 18th century ecclesiastical robes and 20th & 21st century high end fashion. Each has its own aesthetic.

Students will need to bring to class:

  1. a ring frame (also called a hoop frame) that is at least 25cm in diameter – must be a wooden (can be bamboo) frame, not a plastic frame (Mary recommends ‘Crewel Gobelin’ in Marion Street, Killara, ‘Stitch’ in Willoughby Rd or ‘Morris and Sons’ at 50 York St, Sydney). Do organise this immediately.
  2. a piece of fabric that must be closely woven and must be a good weight – not something flimsy. It must be big enough for the frame you will be using with fabric ‘left over’ around the outside of the frame
  3. a small, very sharp pair of scissors (Mary recommends www.scissorman.com.au – ring them and tell them what you are after and their service is quick). Note: do not order so called goldwork scissors because they will actually ‘chew’ your 100% metal threads.
  4. a pair of tweezers
  5. a G-clamp that will allow you to attach your frame to the table – not a huge one – buy one that you can open up enough to accommodate the depth of your frame and the depth of a typical table.
  6. Notepad and pen (biro).

Mary will encourage you to video her while demonstrating.

Mary will be putting together a kit of materials for each student, which will include: metal threads, felt, DMC Soft Cotton, a reel of Gutemann and crewel needles. Mary will also include a small piece of velvet for the cutting of purls (they are one type of metal thread).

The cost of the kit will be included in the price of the workshop.

Mary Brown was a Visual Arts teacher in Catholic Senior Colleges for 25 years. In 2000-2001 she took long service leave to do the Certificated Course at the Royal School of Needlework at Hampton Court Palace in the UK. After graduating, Mary began researching for her book titled “Goldwork Embroidery: Designs and Projects” which was published in 2007. She was a sessional lecturer at UTS in the Fashion & Textile Design Department from 2007 – 2017.

PLEASE NOTE when booking a class with MakerSpace &company you are agreeing to the following terms and conditions:

Student age 

MakerSpace is an 18+ facility, and our classes and facilities are designed for adults.

The reality is that MakerSpace is simply not set up to accommodate children. For further information please click here:  http://makerspace.org.au/book-classes/faq/

Disabled access 

Unfortunately our new space cannot offer suitable wheelchair access. We are currently working on improving our facilities to make them accessible for all. 


We have very limited parking spaces on Gerald Street so if you're driving here please allow time to look for parking on our street or nearby streets.

Students must wear covered shoes, have long hair tied back and wear appropriate safety gear when using equipment.  All students will be shown how to use appropriate PPE (personal protective equipment).

 MakerSpace &company and its tutors will provide training in how to use all equipment and relevant machinery and tools to students during the course.  It is essential that no equipment or machinery be used while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

 While all care will be taken, it is the responsibility of the student to follow all instructions and use all the equipment in a safe and responsible manner.

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What you will learn

  • Learn a historical form of embroidery
  • How to employ goldwork techniques on collars, pockets, epaulettes, large appliques, etc.
  • Learn to use spectacular metal threads

What you will get

  • Expert tuition from an expert coach.

What to bring

  • As per the description

What to wear

Comfortable clothing

Appropriate for

Open to everyone interested!

MakerSpace & Company

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A place for people to make things

Our agenda is to build a culture of innovation and excellence in Australian design, whilst strengthening the local community by bringing people together.

We are a place for locals to participate in the culture of making, and for visitors to experience the best in Australian Design across furniture, ceramics, metalwork, woodwork, industrial design and more.

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Refund Policy

Anyone partaking in any classes or coming to any events at MakerSpace & Company or organised by MakerSpace & Company must agree to these terms and conditions.


I agree to take on full responsibility for any damages, injuries and for physical and/or personal property, which I might incur whilst participating in classes and/or events organised by MakerSpace & Company.


I agree to give MakerSpace & Company unrestricted publishing rights for any photographs or videos taken at MakerSpace & Company classes and events or on MakerSpace & Company's premises. (For use of MakerSpace & Company marketing materials).


MakerSpace & Company requires 5 days (120 hours) notice in writing prior to the class for a 75% refund or transfer.  If you miss this window, we recommend you gift (or sell) your place to someone who will use it and love it. Class places are fully transferable. Email hello@makerspace.org.au


In the event that a class is cancelled, students will be notified via text message or email and entitled to a full refund or credit.

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Terms & Conditions


 Refunds: MakerSpace requires a minimum of 5 days (or 120 hour) notice in writing to receive a 75% refund for change of mind. If you miss this window, we recommend you gift (or sell) your place to someone who will use it and love it. Class places are fully transferable. Email hello@makerspace.org.au

 Cancellations: We rarely cancel classes, but occasional things come up beyond our control. Our classes are very small to ensure you have a great learning experience, but we need a minimum of 4 students to run most of our classes. If a class is cancelled, we will get in touch by phone or email, and discuss your options which include refund, credit or transfer to another date. 

Kids in classes: MakerSpace classes are designed for adults. Kids aged 14-17 can book this class on the condition that an accompanying adult also participates - which means booking two places. If you have questions about kids in the workshop, please read this.

 Terms and Conditions: All students must read and agree to our full Terms and Conditions, you can find them here.

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