Emails and reviews sent by our students...

I'm going back again. The Silversmithing course is fabulous. Karen & Tim make you feel very welcome and Karen's guidance was such that everyone surprised themselves with what they achieved and created. It was a very relaxing, hugely fun and memorable, set in fabulous countryside and near very picturesque villages. My husband and I went to commemorate our 25th wedding anniversary and we have wonderful lasting memories and physical reminders in the form of bracelets (his and hers) amongst other pieces. However, I'm going back with girlfriends next time because we can create and chat, put the world to right and leave with actual personal creations to treasure. Honestly, you'll be amazed at what you can achieve with some very basic techniques, the possibilities are near limitless. I can not forget to mention that thanks to Tim my caffeine addiction was kept well topped up throughout the day and he provided fabulous lunches too. Thank you Karen & Tim. I look forward to seeing you again soon. S Stride

*****************************************************************

I am just back from a wonderful of jewellery making at La Vidalerie. It is the third time I have been and I cannot recommend it highly enough. Karen and Tim are excellent hosts and the accommodation is beautiful and very comfortable. There is a lovely relaxed atmosphere. Karen is a great teacher and is very patient. She explains things really well and is always very positive and encouraging. Tim does airport pick ups, sightseeing and provides tasty lunches and teas/coffees throughout the day. I have done various workshops and built on my skills. There is such a sense of achievement when you come home with beautiful pieces you have made. If you are looking for a break away in the beautiful French countryside learning new skills then this is for you! M Rae

*****************************************************************

Brilliant! Loved the tuition, the accommodation and the scenery! Fabulous time if you want a break away and learn something in the process! ! Lourika

*****************************************************************

Thanks Karen & Tim for a great trip, thou it was definitely too short! You've created a wonderful getaway in SW France. I returned with a notebook full of new techniques and inspiration, not to mention the great meals enjoyed, tea time and mr. choo choo. Fabulous time, thanks again for the short notice drop in! S Webster

*****************************************************************

Thankyou so much to karen at la vidalerie. I have thoroughly enjoyed my experience and look forward to more visits as I have caught the bug. You are a great teacher. Thankyou Tim for all your driving, shopping and refreshments. K Curry

*****************************************************************

What a fabulous place and such great tuition we had at La Vidalerie. Karen you are a great teacher and made the three days so much fun and motivating, so much so that I fear you might have to put up with me coming again soon! Thanks to Tim to for all the lunches and constant cups of tea and of course those beautiful pusscats! X. S Wright

*****************************************************************

Just a quick line to say a big thank you for looking after me so well last week! To say I enjoyed it would be an understatement - so informative and I learnt so much in only 3 days - the time just flew. It was great to stay in such a lovely peaceful area, so different to any other trip I've ever been on.
S Donaldson

*****************************************************************

Just had the most wonderful 2 days here as my 60th Birthday present.
i can highly recommend this course, to all. I came away with so many made goodies by myself and my husband.
Karen excellent teacher. Tim great cook great host, great company. Don't hesitate to go for this course. E & R Norton

*****************************************************************

What a great week! The gite was gorgeous, warm and comfortable and hosts, Karen and Tim, made my stay fun and relaxed. Karen is a wonderful teacher giving clear tuition, encouragement and patience! I left with a host of new skills, some lovely new jewellery and bags of enthusiasm.
J Shrimpton

*****************************************************************

Fabulous holiday. Was made to feel very welcome and I learned loads. Will definitely recommend and book again D S Wilkins

*****************************************************************

I had an excellent time and would throughly recommend the jewellery making course in Rodez - Karen and Tim are very friendly and hospitable, the accommodation is gorgeous and Karen's knowledge and teaching ability was excellent. A Fellows

*****************************************************************

I enjoyed a 3 day break at La Vidalerie making jewellery and had a really lovely time. The gite is absolutely gorgeous (it was snowy when I was there and it was lovely and cosy). Karen and Tim are excellent hosts, very friendly and informal - Tim was unfailing in his role as chauffeur, tour-guide, cook and chief tea-maker, and Karen is hugely knowledgeable and an excellent and patient teacher. I would thoroughly recommend taking a jewellery-making holiday at La Vidalerie and I really hope to go back. Alison

*****************************************************************

very friendly, good tuition ive learnt loads of new skills, lovely food even made the effort to arrange a birthday cake with candles. good value for money and some lovely jewelery to bring home D Bethel

*****************************************************************

We have just returned from our Jewellery making holday at La vidalerie. If you like Jewellery and want to learn a new skill, this is a must!!! With breath taking surroundings, beautiful cosy accomodation, excellent hosptality and first class workshops. Karen is an endless pot of knowledge when it come to making fabulous Jewellery. Tim is a great host and a mine of local information, with endless stories to tell. From start to finish we enjoyed every minute of the time we spent with this lovely couple in there fantastic home in France. We came home with our own hand made Jewellery and were very proud of our efforts. Cant wait to return to expand on our new found skills in early 2013. Carole & Katie (mum & daughter)

*****************************************************************

My boyfriend Barry and I had a wonderful time on our silversmithing course in France! The beautifully refurbished 300 year old farmhouse made for a very comfortable and quaint location to relax in and enjoy. The spectacular valley vies surrounding us, provided a perfect getaway! The hosts were fab T Dale-Johnson

*****************************************************************

Just wanted to say as a complete beginner with no knowledge at all I was a little apprehensive that I wouldn't be able to create anything , but with Karen's excellent tuition, guidance & patience, I came home with a lot of knowledge and some lovely jewellery , tools, beads & a strong desire to have a go & make more at home , so thank you so much. Diane H

*****************************************************************

I have just returned from a Week of Jewellery Making at La Vidalerie feeling very relaxed. Karen and Tim made me feel so welcome right from pick up at the airport and throughout the week. Nothing was too much trouble for them. The location is so peaceful and the accomodaton in the gite very comfortable. Karen is an excellent teacher, very patient and so knowledgable about many areas of jewellery making. Her flexible approach means that she caters well for individual needs and gives penty of choice. I was really pleased with the jewellery I produced over the week.
She also has a wide range of books and magazines and design ideas which she shares freely. M Rae

*****************************************************************

Tim produced beautiful meals, provided taxi service to a local restaurant and the local market on Saturday morning and both he and Karen provided lots of information about the area.The week ended all too soon but I went home having learned so much and feeling inspired to produce many more pieces of my own. The best holiday ever! Had an amazing time filled with patient, encouraging and highly skilled tuition (wire work workshop), top quality materials, tonnes of delicious home cooked food washed down with lots of equally delicious wine, amazing sights to see, a beautiful gite... I could go on. Suffice to say I'm looking forward already to going back next year - silversmithing next I think! Thanks Karen and Tim! x L Rose

*****************************************************************

I have done 2 jewellery courses at Karen & Tim's beautiful farmhouse in the Aveyron. Karen is the most wonderful teacher and got me completely hooked on creating jewellery. She has bags of patience and will adapt any course to teach you exactly what you need to know. She totally inspired me and I have continued making jewellery with a passion ever since. Tim - her right hand man in every way c ... ooks a mean dinner and has a wicked sense of humour and kept me entertained with his funny stories (and lots of wine). The setting is perfect, peaceful and very rural and they are both fabulous hosts. The gittes are lovely, very comfortable and homely. This is a great holiday in every sense and I will be back again! S Finlayson

*****************************************************************

I have very happy memories of a course I did with Karen and Tim about 18 months ago. I have done a number of courses at this stage to do with glass and jewellery and Karen is the best teacher I have come across - patient, clear, encouraging, inspirational. I would heartily recommend these courses - excellent value, covering many hours of learning as well as excellent home-made food and very comfortable accommodation. A return visit is definitely in order!! I Raftery

*****************************************************************

I had a fantastic time on my week long jewellery making course. Karen and Tim were fantastic hosts and I learnt so much great stuff that I have been putting into practice ever since. I've even started selling pieces and it's all thanks to what I learnt during my course. The location was perfect, beautiful and peaceful - just what I needed for a break from my busy schedule - and Tim's cooking was delicious and generous.
I recommend anyone interested in jewellery making to sign up and head over to La Vidalerie! C Evans

*****************************************************************

Karen and tim make you feel so welcome and i had a fabulous holiday the cottage and surroundings are first class and it's sooo peaceful!
Oh and of course i learnt loads too!! If you have the chance go for it! D Dibble

*****************************************************************

What a special week's holiday! I was met at the airport by Tim who made sure I saw some of the sights before heading towards St Geniez d'Olt. And be sure to check out a supermarket or two. So many treats to try.
The gite is beautifully and tastefully crafted. I had a large room looking out to the lush trees on the other side of the narrow valley. Lovely cotton sheets, a comfortable mattress and a ... full bookcase - heaven.
Karen and Tim offered an excellent mix of sociability and privacy. Breakfast was good and lunch was both delicious and enormous.
I loved taking strolls after class along the quiet lanes nearby and was very pleased when Tim suggested a sightseeing day to the cathedral city of Conques.
As for jewellry making: Karen is a patient teacher. She manages to pass along the knowledge in just the correct-sized chunks and is supportive yet never patronising. I was so grateful to view the selection of examples of the techniques we were learning as well as the chance to consult Karen's extensive library of jewellry making books. I came away with many pieces of jewellry I was proud to show off to my friends. B Auterson

*****************************************************************

I have just spent the most fantastic week learning silversmithing and PMC... it was a really great time. It was my second trip to La Vidalerie, and I wasn't disappointed. Karen's teaching is brilliant and supportive, and she manages to teach design as well as the technical side of things. I've come home with a whole load of beautiful jewellery, an awful lot of knowledge and some really good memories.
I would certainly go back again - there is always more to learn and I can't think of a better place to do that learning! R Dean

*****************************************************************

We've just got back from a lovely two days of 'silversmithing for beginners' The course was brilliant and Karen & Tim were fantastic hosts. It's a very relaxing experience as Karen has endless patience and you come away feeling you've made two friends with the added bonus of all the 'goodies' you've made. As it was my husband who was more interested in jewellery making we can highly recommend Karen & Tim's courses for male and females alike. We're already discussing what we would like to do next. Thanks to you both xx L Reed

*****************************************************************

What an amzing weekend we have just had! Karen and Tim are truly great hosts, very welcoming and lovely food! The jewellery making experience was amzing, thank you Karen for being a great teacher. We both feel like we learned so much and will certainly be putting our new found techniques into practice! I've already started recommending you to others! Thank you so much! x L Hill

*****************************************************************

Best weekend I have had in a very long time. Thank you so much!! I have started planning my next trip hehe!! C Brogden

*****************************************************************

Thanks for such a wonderful holiday Karen & Tim!! I learnt so much about silversmithing and just loved the farmhouse and breathtaking country scenery. I would highly recommend this experience to anyone and will definitely be going back. You both were great hosts. Thanks again! J Kline

*****************************************************************

Karen and Tim offer a fantastic break in the most beautiful area of France. Definately a jewellry making holiday not to be missed as they treat you like family and make you feel very special. The food is fantastic (ask to try the Aligot - I have never tasted a mash potato like it), the wine is free flowing, the workshops are first class and Karens patience is .... well, in my case, never ending! ... J Silver

*****************************************************************

If you have ever wondered about making your own jewellery, but were afraid to have a go; if you like the quieter, rural side of life in France; then this is the holiday you are looking for. Karen takes you patiently through every step to enable you to succeed in making your chosen items. Unless you come with a couple of close friends, there will only be a maximum of two of you learning so you have ... plenty of individual attention. Tim will make sure you are well fed, sitting outside the farmhouse for lunch if the weather is warm enough, so you can really appreciate the hard work they have put into renovating the buildings. Karen and Tim are excellent hosts and nothing is too much trouble, be it picking you up from the airport, cooking, sightseeing, or making sure your jewellery is something you will love to wear! The choice of workshops mean you can just have a short beak away or indulge in a full week of creativity, retiring to your large comfy bed each night to dream about what you're going to make the next day!
Now I might just have to check out those workshop dates again, just writing about it has made me want to book for a third visit! Jane Moore

*****************************************************************

I did the silver smith course last year in April with my best friend and it was the best holiday I had. Learnt so much in a very relaxed atmosphere. Karen is an amazing teacher and used good quality materials. T James

*****************************************************************

The hosts are fantastic people, who entertain, teach, cook a fabulouse meal, and make you feel right at home. A Armstrong

*****************************************************************

I loved every minute of this course and came home with some beautiful jewellery. Can't wait to put my new skills to the test. The accommodation was lovely and Tim's cooking [not to mention his banter!!] was superb. T MacKinnon

*****************************************************************

The best holiday EVER!! The area is stunning, breathtakingly beautiful and serene, the building intriguing and the work that Tim and Karen have done to it is very impressive, but the jewellery making is amazing! Karen is a brilliant teacher, and I came home with absolutely tons of silver jewellery that I "smithed" myself like a proper jeweller! It is amazing value for money too, with 2 meals a day, materials and use of tools included, and superb accommodation. I urge anyone interested in broadening their horizons or simply starting out in jewellery making to go. I will certainly be going back! J Jones

*****************************************************************

Beautiful setting, relaxing atmosphere and classes tailored to individual interests and capabilities. We worked with quality materials and came away with beautiful jewelry. Karen and Tim are so friendly and helpful. The lunches were delicious, and they catered to even the most difficult dietary requirements. C Boyle

*****************************************************************

I really enjoyed this trip! The jewellery making was great and I was pleased with the piecies I made. The school is set in beautiful surroundings. After the initial suprise of being the only one there I had a fab time and Karen and Tim were lovely and made me feel very welcome (and are great fun!)! V Earnshaw

*****************************************************************

I had a wonderful time in the beautiful French countryside making lovely jewellery while my husband fished the local waters. Karen and Tim are tireless and superb hosts for whom nothing was too much trouble. Highly recommended.  Lynda

*****************************************************************

My week making jewellery with Karen was very special to me.  I had decided to go on holiday on my own, which I had never done before, but thought the focus of making jewellery would make it easier.  After Tim met me at the airport and gave me a guided tour of the beautiful French countryside surrounding their home I knew that it was going to be a very interesting week.  The accommodation is lovely and everything is provided.  I was very lucky that the other person learning how to make jewellery that week was great and we got on like a house on fire, and even went out to dinner together. The jewellery making lessons were structured and very well thought through to accommodate everyone's skills.  Everything was supplied and the selection of beads was very good.  I went home with quite a selection of beautiful items and am still using the skills I leant today. I would very much like to return one day and wish Karen and Tim every success for the future - P Earring