Continuing Education: Textile Design

A stenciled pattern of flowers and vines in blue and white
Sample (detail), Japan, c. 2000-2001. Cotsen Textile Traces Study Collection T-1177. Photo by Bruce M. White Photography.


Join experienced textile designer and educator Karthika Audinet for an in-depth study of textile design and history.

This six-week course explores textile traditions and techniques used around the world from ancient times to the present, including cotton, hot resists, indigo and twill and satin structures. Students will review examples from world-class textile collections, including the Cotsen Textile Traces Study Collection, as well as works by award-winning contemporary artists and designers. Students will have a chance to develop their own aesthetic and skills using fabrics, pencil and paper, hot wax and organic indigo dye.

Class Schedule

Week 1, Coveted Cotton: Gain an in-depth understanding of cotton through the ages, from the renowned muslins of ancient Dhaka to the influence of colonialism and Gandhi to the pros and cons of cotton today.

Week 2, Hot Resists: Learn about applied resist patterning processes practiced all over the world, from mud and ash resists to hot wax, and draw inspiration from contemporary artworks. Adapt the textile patterns you created in the Level 1 course to wax-resist on cotton.

Weeks 3 and 4, Enigmatic Indigo: Trace the worldwide appeal of indigo blue from ancient Peru to the printed textiles of 19th-century British designer William Morris. Straightforward chemistry theory will be reinforced by a hands-on project to create (and maintain) your own mini vat of indigo dye.

Weeks 5 and 6, Twills and Satins: Learn to plot and weave basic twills and satin weave structures through simple hands-on activities. Explore examples of fabrics designed with these structures, including houndstooth, damasks and other important historical fabrics.

About Karthika Audinet

Karthika Audinet is a textile designer with 25 years of international experience and a background in designing luxury furnishings. Audinet was trained in textile design at the National Institute of Design in India, and received a second master's degree at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle in France. She was principal designer for the textile department of Good Earth India, and now operates Designers and Artisans, a consultancy and fair-trade company that champions hand weaving and crafting. In addition to her work as a designer, Audinet teaches courses in weaving, interior design and textile history, and publishes original research.

How to Participate

This program will take place on Zoom on Thursday evenings, June 2 through July 7. 

To participate, simply sign up here by May 19, and then join the course online each week using the Zoom link provided. Once you register, we will email you the link and instructions for joining the class. You will also receive a materials list and additional details about the course. Fee: $325/members, $375/public (plus materials). For questions, please contact [email protected].