Welcome to the Craft Arena website!

The now larger Craft Arena sells needlecraft, knitting, crochet, mixed media and craft supplies, Brother sewing machines, haberdashery, beads, craft books, gifts and textile art. We hold regular workshops in a variety of crafts, and showcase the work of local artists in frequently changing exhibitions at Alchemy, our dedicated Textile Art Gallery. Find us upstairs in the Barleylands Craft Village, Billericay, Essex, Studios 49 - 51

At Craft Arena we either use or personally recommend everything we sell. If you have a specific requirement please contact us and we will do our best to help. We stock a wide range of Brother Sewing and Embroidery machines and offer a full personal demonstration before you buy so that you get the right machine for your needs. We also give FREE training on most machines so that you can make the most of your new purchase.

Our regular newsletter contains special offers, details of upcoming workshops and everything Craft Arena. If you'd like to subscribe, simply click on the icon below. Newsletters are usually sent out weekly and we don't pass your email details onto anyone else.

I look forward to seeing you in the studio soon.

Workshops - coming soon

Fabric Memory book with Denise

Thursday, 1 February 2018 - 10:30am to 4:00pm

Ideal for keeping lasting memories of a wedding, birth or a loved one, we will make a unique canvas book, show you how to print photographs onto fabric, collage with trimmings and give you ideas for stitching and finishing your book.
Bring our own digital photographs to include in your book. Materials (apart from photographs) will be provided, but you can bring your own memory fabric, buttons etc to include if you wish.


Lino Printing with Lynne - 3rd February

Saturday, 3 February 2018 - 10:30am to 4:00pm

Join artist & printmaker Lynne Blackburn of Essex Print Studio for a one day ‘Introduction to Lino Printing’ workshop.

You learn how to use the tools and inks used in linocut printing, and how to hand carve a design and take prints from it. Linocuts can be printed easily by hand or with a simple press.

Lynne will bring a number of designs based around a ‘Landscape’ theme for you to choose from. 6 sheets of printmaking paper are included in the workshop price, with additional sheets available to buy if you would like to print more.

This is an ideal opportunity to learn the skills to create your own editioned prints, artist books, or posters. While this workshop will focus on paper prints, the techniques are ideal for use with fabrics and textile art

This workshop is now fully booked. Please contact us to be put on our waiting list


Embroidery Machine Group 4th February

Sunday, 4 February 2018 - 10:30am to 1:00pm

A series of informal monthly sessions to help you get the most from your embroidery machine. A different machine embroidery technique will be covered each month. Bring along any challenges or questions and there will be someone here to answer them.
We would love to see your work, so bring that along too.


Needlefelting with Denise - Thursday 8th February

Thursday, 8 February 2018 - 10:30am to 12:30pm

Using dry-felting techniques, we will combine threads fabric and fibres together to create textured backgrounds for either machine or hand stitching. We will cover the basics of needlefelting pictures and contemporary designs by hand and will also show how an embellishing machine can be used to speed up the process of creating backgrounds for further work.


Goldwork Menagerie with Wendy - 9th and 10th February

Friday, 9 February 2018 - 10:30am to 4:00pm
Saturday, 10 February 2018 - 10:30am to 4:00pm

This two day workshop will use goldwork embroidery and silk shading to construct beautiful pictures. You will have a choice of animals to work on. One kit is provided and more will be available to purchase if you are a quick worker or if you want to do more at home. A requirements list is also available if you wish to bring some of your own materials.

This class is suitable for anyone who has basic embroidery stitches and those who would like to take their skills further.


Crochet Along with Sue Broughton - Friday 16th February

Friday, 16 February 2018 - 2:00pm to 4:00pm

Join Sue for her latest crochet project for those who have learnt the basics. You will be helped to gain confidence with pattern-reading skills as well as learning new stitches and techniques. You will be able to join us at any stage of this series of classes as long as you are familiar with basic crochet stitches. If you are a newcomer to crochet, ask about our beginner's class.