1. The Festival of Quilts, 9-12th August
If you love to quilt, this is the show for you! The Festival of Quilts, held in Birmingham, boasts a market with more than 300 vendors! With so much to choose from, you’ll be sure to find the unique fabrics, threads, and equipment you need to take your projects to the next level, plus lectures, workshops, and classes to help hone your skills.
2. Top Drawer Trade Show, 14-16th January
Is your handmade business ready to handle retail orders? The Top Drawer Craft Trade Exhibition is the show for you. A highly curated selection of handmade businesses get the chance to meet with buyers for the top lifestyle retailers in the UK!
3. Quilt and Stitch Village, 13th-15th April
Quilting, sewing, embroidery and more will all be on display at the Quilt and Stitch Village. Enter your work in the competitions, sign up to be a vendor, or just visit for the inspiration! Don’t miss the demonstrations and workshops on offer as well.
4. The Scottish Quilting Show, 8-11th March
Featuring the work of Scottish quilters, this show includes the exhibition, competitions, and workshops, and more!
5. Sewing for Pleasure, 15-18 March
So many shows these days are geared toward artists running handmade businesses. What about those who sew, knit, quilt, and crochet just for the love of it? You’ll find like-minded stitchers at the Sewing for Pleasure show in Birmingham!
6. The Creative Craft Show, 1-3rd February
Crafters of all sorts will find something of interest at this show! The Creative Craft Show, held in Manchester, includes vendors selling supplies, tools, and materials, as well as artists with their finished products. Visit exhibitions brought in from around the world, including traditional needlework arts.
7. The Autumn Knitting and Stitching Show, 22-25th November
Harrogate’s Knitting and Stitching Show is the perfect combination of professional resource and hobby inspiration. Whether you’re a handmade artist looking to sell your wares, or a new sewist just getting started, there’s plenty to see and do!
8. Gill Smith Corsetry Exhibition, 4-15th June
Specialty sewing calls for specialty exhibitions. If you’re thinking about getting started in corset work, check out the Gill Smith Corsetry Exhibition, hosted by Lady Sew and Sew. Though this event doesn’t include class-time, it’s a rare chance to see the work of an expert corsetiere up close!
9. A History of Fashion in 100 Objects, 19th March—January 1st, 2019
Fashion has a history, and what better way to hone your design skills than by getting a sense of what’s come before? Check out the Fashion Museum in Bath for this exhibition of fashion’s evolution over time. Be sure to bring a sketchpad to capture your favourite ideas.
10. The London Textile Fair, 18-19th July
Visit the largest textile fair in London, where more than 450 vendors from all over Europe will be in attendance. For makers who focus on creating prints or handwoven textiles, it’s a great opportunity to show off your wares, while other handmade businesses can find it a valuable resource for finding just the right materials.
11. Selvedge Events
Selvedge, a magazine devoted to textiles, fibre arts, and the people who create them, hosts a wide range of fairs, exhibitions, and workshops throughout the year. Whether you’re looking to learn new skills or put your own creations on display, check out the opportunities on offer!
12. Fat Quarter Festival, 15-16th September
If you’re a quilter, you’ve probably got fat quarters in all kinds of patterns and colours in your stash, but if you need to add a few more, don’t miss the Fat Quarter Festival at Lady Sew and Sew in Henley.
13. The Handmade Fair
With three opportunities to go, The Handmade Fair is for more than just sewists. Handmade artists of all sorts will be on hand with their wares, and you’ll also find classes and workshops for all kinds of techniques.
14. Handmade in Britain
Handmade in Britain hosts shows at Oxford, Edinburgh, Kew, and Chelsea, and they include some of the finest handmade artists in Britain. Apply for a booth, or simply browse and be inspired.
15. Fashion & Embroidery, 15-18th March
Embroidery, cross-stitch, applique, and other fibre arts are the focus of the Fashion & Embroidery show. See these techniques transformed into wearable art at the fashion runway shows, or take a class and learn to replicate some of the techniques yourself!
16. Quilters Fair, 14th January
If you want to start the year off with a new project, stop by the Quilters Fair at Farnham Maltings. Pick out some fabulous new material, and view the exhibition put on by the South of England quilting groups.
17. The Spring Knitting and Stitching Show, 1-4th March
Can’t wait for the fall show? No worries! The Spring Knitting and Stitching Show, held in March, includes everything from the Dressmakers’ Studio (perfect for honing your skills in fitting and garment construction) to entire textile galleries!
18. Simply Christmas, 15-17th November
Christmas is a brilliant time of year for handmade artists, whether you’re making items to sell, or to give as gifts to friends and family. The Simply Christmas show has plenty to offer to both kinds of crafters.
19. West Country Quilt and Textile Show, 1-3rd September
Ready for a challenge? Enter your quilt in one of the many competitions of the West Country Quilt and Textile Showthis fall. Even if you’re not the competitive sort, you’ll still find lots to see and do at this show, where there’s a full schedule of masterclasses, workshops, and lectures.
20. The Handmade and Homegrown Festival, 31st August—2nd September
Visit historic Hever Castle for the Handmade and Homegrown Festival. All kinds of locally crafted items will be available for sale and on display, including the annual patchwork and quilting exhibition.