About the Course

The RSN’s Professional Embroidery Tutor Programme is the course for anyone wanting a career as a professional embroiderer and tutor.

Under the guidance of our expert tutors, you will be trained to the highest level in technical hand embroidery. You will also have classes in Art & Design and Business Skills, as well as opportunities for Teaching Practice.

The course will provide you with all that you need to know to become a successful tutor and freelance embroiderer.


Schedule and Term Dates

This is a three-year, flexible full-time course.  The course runs across three terms each year, with breaks at Christmas, Easter and Summer.  A week off is also given at each half-term.

Term (2024/2025) Dates Half-term break
Autumn 2024 9 September – 13 December 28 October – 1 November
Spring 2025 6 January – 4 April 17 – 21 February
Summer 2025 22 April – 4 July 26 – 30 May


During the term, your week will be made up as follows:

  • 10 x hours (two fixed days) in the classroom at Hampton Court Palace.
  • 25 x hours independent study (this will include homework from classroom sessions and work for your portfolio).


*Course Content

Timetabled sessions will include:

Year One Year Two Year Three
Jacobean Crewelwork Canvas Shading Fine Whitework
Canvas Stitches Creative Box Creative Metal
Silk Shaded Botanical Silk Shaded Animal/Bird Signature Piece
Goldwork Stumpwork Business Skills
Appliqué Tapestry Shaded Figure Art and Design
Blackwork Mixed Whitework Teaching Practice
Art and Design Art and Design
Teaching Practice Teaching Practice

*The school regularly reviews the programme and may add or remove sessions as suitable.  The above is a guide only.


From time to time, various additional workshops, projects or collaborations with other students/artists may be made available to you.  These vary each year and will be made known to you as appropriate.


In addition to the taught sessions, you will also be working on a portfolio, which must be completed, to pass the course. Your portfolio will be inspected on a regular basis, to make sure you are progressing and to offer any help/support you might need.  The portfolio will contain the following sections:

Art & Design

A collection of pieces completed both in classroom sessions and independently, showing your development across the course.  You should also include a log of any exhibitions attended, including reflections/evidence of your visit.

Reading, Research and History

For each embroidery technique, you will be required to research its history, development and uses.  You will build a collection of your findings, which will serve as a useful teaching tool in your future work.

Teaching Practice

Throughout the course, there will be opportunities to assist, demonstrate and teach at various classes, workshops and exhibitions, both at Hampton Court Palace and other venues.  You will be required to keep a log of all teaching practice and write reflections on the sessions you cover.

Please note, most opportunities will be at weekends. Travel expenses to offsite venues will be reimbursed by the RSN.

You will also be required to complete an online AET Level 3 Teaching qualification (unless you already hold this or a higher-level qualification).  This can be done at a time of your choosing, at any point across the three years of the course.  Further details will be provided to successful applicants, on commencement of the course.

Signature Piece

In your final year, you will draw on all the skills you have learnt, to create a freestyle piece, showcasing your talent.  This also serves as an opportunity to promote yourself, as you look towards the start of your career in the world of hand embroidery.



Students who complete the programme go on to a wide variety of different positions.

Many teach for the RSN, some launch their own hand embroidery businesses, offering a mixture of commissions, kits and classes.  Some find teaching or embroidery opportunities with other schools and businesses.

Fees and other associated costs

The fees for the course for academic year 2024/25 are £9000 per annum.  This includes all tuition, assessments and starter embroidery materials.

Some materials and tools will be provided by the RSN, to get you started on the course.  Over time, you will naturally want to add to your resources, as you prepare for your future career.  For certain techniques, you may also wish to source your own materials and threads.  Depending on your choices, you will need to allow between £150-250 per annum for this.


Fee Waiver Scholarship

Each year, the RSN aims to award one fee-waiver scholarship to a deserving individual in financial need, who can show the potential for excellence in the Art of Hand Embroidery.

Applicants for the scholarship must be UK residents aged 18-25.  The scholarship covers the full cost of the tuition fees for the three years of the course.

Fee-Waiver Scholarship



The programme takes a maximum of six students each year.  Applications are reviewed as they come in and candidates invited for interview on a rolling programme, until the course is full.

If you intend on applying for the scholarship, you must apply before April 12th 2024, 4pm. All other applications must be received by July 31st.

How to Apply

If you have any questions about the course, please contact the course leader, Joanna Hart, at [email protected]. Thank you.