It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but the Christmas build-up can also be the most chaotic. That’s why we’ve put together our guide of festive workshops, where you can let the stress of the season melt away and focus on enjoying something more mindful.
Choose from crafty activities like willow weaving, wreath making, paper crafting or candle arranging; or take a cookery class to master a new recipe in time for the big day.
And if that’s all a little too hands on, then a festive gin tasting experience might be just the tonic to ease you into the holiday spirit!
1.The Suffolk Wildlife Trust Workshops at Foxburrow Nature Reserve and Carlton Marshes
Suffolk Wildlife Trust have a range of ‘Naturally Festive’ workshops planned this winter, all designed to help you add a touch of natural charm to your Yuletide celebrations.
Foxburrow Nature Reserve near Woodbridge have two festive crafting workshops on offer, both lead by Artist in Residence, Nicola Coe. On Tuesday 12 December you can learn how to print with natural finds and inks to make waxed paper Christmas tree decorations. Or choose to visit on Wednesday 20 December to make a stunning paper lantern ready for the winter solstice.
Both workshops will begin with a guided walk through the wintery landscapes of Foxburrow to forage for supplies. The group will then head into the barn for a warm afternoon of creating and crafting by the fire - with teas and coffees a-plenty!
Head here to book the Christmas Tree Decoration workshop https://www.suffolkwildlifetrust.org/events/2023-12-02-festive-willow-decorations-workshop
And here for Christmas Lanterns: https://www.suffolkwildlifetrust.org/events/2023-12-20-naturally-festive-christmas-lanterns
Both workshops are five hours long, running from 10am – 3pm and cost £40 per person.
Then on Friday 15 December, join Rachel Wiles – artist, florist and creative wellbeing practitioner for a day of mindful festive creativity to make a beautifully bespoke Christmas candle arrangement with foraged pinecones and dried orange slices.
This workshop runs from 10am – 3.30pm and also costs £40 per person. To book, visit: https://www.suffolkwildlifetrust.org/events/2023-12-15-create-bespoke-christmas-candle-arrangement
2. Luxury Christmas Door Wreath Workshop with The Pin Mill Studio and The Little Flower Company
Learn how to put together a stunning wreath and create the perfect winter welcome for your home under the expert instruction of Ellie Doe, highly qualified florist and owner of The Little Flower Company.
Located in The Pin Mill Studio – a beautiful space on the banks of the River Orwell – this three-hour workshop will be sure to leave you feeling festive, and with a wreath that will make your door the best dressed this Christmas!
The workshop costs £55 per person and includes all wreath making supplies, as well as mince pies, hot chocolates, teas and coffees.
There are four dates to choose from, 25 & 26 November and 2 & 3 December with sessions at 10am – 1pm, or 2pm – 5pm.
Head to www.photographicday.com to book or pay in person at The Pin Mill Studio at weekends between 12pm – 5pm.
3. Festive Cookery Workshops at The Food Hub Cookery School Suffolk
‘Tis the season of indulgently feasting – and impressing your guests with showstopping spreads!
From perfecting elegant canapes ready for a Christmas party, to learning how to make chocolate truffles good enough to gift, The Food Hub Cookery School have a whole host of workshops to inspire your Christmas cooking.
Head over to https://www.foodhubsuffolk.co.uk/courses to find more details for each of the following festive cookery experiences:
- Italian Christmas Feast Cookery Course - Saturday 25 November
- Canapes and Cocktails Cooking Class - Wednesday 29 November
- Christmas Wreaths and Foodie Gifts Cookery Course - Saturday 2 December
- Christmas Bread Cookery Course - Sunday 3 December
- Christmas Foodie Gifts Cooking Class - Wednesday 6 December and Wednesday 20 December
- Christmas Patisserie and Chocolate Cookery Course - Saturday 16 December
4. Festive Gin Tasting and Fireside Lunch Tour at Fishers Gin
What better way to begin advent than booking a festive gin tasting tour at Fishers Gin?
Starting on 1 December, and available on selected dates until 28 December, the Festive Gin Tasting Tour includes a 3-course lunchtime fireside meal, with dishes curated by Aldeburgh’s newest restaurant, The Suffolk.
In addition to this you will receive a guided tour around the Distillery, tutored tasting of gins and seasonal cocktails, and a unique botanical tea making experience.
The tour costs £65 per person and includes a complimentary festive Fishers cocktail, which you can enjoy whilst relaxing by the fire overlooking Aldeburgh’s shingle beach and the North Sea.
Book your place here: https://fishersgin.com/pages/tour
5. Jimmy's Farm Wreath Making Workshops
Not only can you create a beautiful Christmas wreath, enjoy this festive workshop at Jimmy's Farm and you can also tuck in to a delicious two course roast dinner or afternoon tea!
All materials are supplied in the workshops, which are ably led by the Jimmy's Farm team, using foliage grown in the farm's gardens.
With workshops running on 18 & 19 November, 25 & 26 November and 9 & 10 December, with two sessions each day; to choose from. The 10am workshop including a roast dinner, and the afternoon workshop including afternoon tea.
Workshops with a roast dinner are £49.95, and with afternoon tea £46.95.
Book your place here: https://jimmysfarm.com/event/wreath-making-workshops/
For more festive events on The Suffolk Coast, check out our Christmas What's On Guide