Digital Tartan Design Course

April 28, 2020 by Perthshire Creates

Lockdown has prompted Blairgowrie based Masterweaver Ashleigh Slater who runs Tartan Caledonia, to adapt his way of working, in particular his Tartan Design Course which is now available online.

He’s keen to share his love of the process and encourages you to use some of your lockdown time to try something new and design your own tartan. Having developed his course into a 5-hour online tutorial, which encompasses a range of techniques and design elements using various design software and web-software, he’ll guide you through the process helping you to develop a unique tartan design in your chosen colours selected to represent your own family history and interests.

Image from Tartan Design Process on

In addition to internet access you’ll need a web-camera to attend this virtual course, which once booked will be organised via Zoom and Facetime at a time to suit.

This on-line course is very reasonably priced at £40 and has been designed during lockdown to help those who are in isolation right now and need to feel empowered to create something meaningful. Once the tartan has been designed Ashleigh can guide you through the registration process, (an additional cost of £70 and is not included in the costs of the course).

Ashleigh is keen for people to benefit from the creative process and comments: During these uncertain times, I want to make sure that this course boosts your mental wellbeing, and a gives you a focus. When we establish the weaving courses again, you can have the opportunity to weave the tartan in the studio in Blairgowrie if you wish to do so.

Once your tartan is fully designed, it’ll be ready to register and get woven (or weave yourself if you have a weaving loom) into a fabric which can be used for family gifts, weddings, birthdays and other occasions.

We had a few questions for Ashleigh about his new digital design course:

How easy or difficult was it to develop this into an e-course? Tartan design for myself is a journey, familiar with teaching tartan design on a personal level with one-to-one clients, turning this in to a digital course meant a few minor tweaks. Like anything in life a new way to try something is always good.

Had you always planned to offer this course online, or has lockdown given you the opportunity to make it a priority? Priority and opportunity!  To date my courses have only been available in person. Using my skills to support people design and develop their own tartan online is a new course I’m offering, and this also presents a new era in the development of my business, as I can now evolve my client base further a field to include those who cannot visit the studio in person.

What have you learned from adapting your way of teaching? It’s a new way for me to teach, although in 2019 I studied for an MA that was delivered via conference and web-camera, so with the skills and understanding of being a digital participant, I’m in a good position to know what works well and can include this experience in the delivery of my tartan design course.

How accessible is this course?  The course cost has been set at a price (£40) to make it as accessible as possible. Understandably in these difficult economic times it may not suit everyone, it’s tricky as there is a great deal of free digital content out there just now, and with YouTube, TV and celebrity craft courses up for grabs, it’s challenging to offer something different and affordable.  However, customers can be assured they will benefit from my experience in both design and teaching and it will be 1:1 experience enabling interaction throughout the 5 hour process.

Do you have any other information you want to share? Just to say to people to please stay safe, and I look forward to teaching again one-to-one very soon, until then lets weave digitally.

You can contact Ashleigh Slater at Tartan Caledonia on his email, and book onto his Tartan e-course on 

Blairgowrie Berries & Cherries Tartan design by Tartan Caledonia