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Jewellery Making and Cooking Holiday

From £1321 pp

France, Gascony

8 Days

Small Group up to 6 People

Jewellery Making and Cooking Holiday

(4)

What You'll Do

Combine learning two unique skills with beautiful accommodation, delicious food and wine, expert tuition and picturesque landscapes on this remarkable 7 night jewellery making and cooking holiday in the heart of Gascony set in a 19th Century farmhouse with swimming pool.

During this 7 night jewellery making holiday, you will be introduced to the wonders of glass and glass fusing techniques with talented artist Caroline and discover the secrets to French cooking with passionate cook Adam, all set in a beautiful 19th century farmhouse sitting in 50 acres of countryside, ensuring your holiday is a relaxing haven.

Alternatively, learn to make your own beautiful polymer clay jewellery and small pieces. Caroline will begin with an introduction to the basic techniques. This course is suitable for complete beginners so don’t worry if you have never tried anything like this before! You will be amazed at the beautiful pieces you make to take home with you at the end of your trip.

Your final choice is to try your hand at crafting metal clays. Metal clays are a new jewellery making product which are easy to mould and shape – just like clay – so you’re not limited to what you can design. Watch as the metal clay is fired and turns to pure silver before your very eyes, ready to be made into unique pieces of jewellery.

As well as making jewellery, you’ll also learn to cook tasty French cuisine and explore the delights of French cuisine with culinary guided excursions. And what better place to learn to cook? Famously a gourmet’s paradise, Gascony is famed for its delicious duck to succulent wild boar and charming local wines, not forgetting the allure of Gascony Armagnac, which will tickle your taste buds.

Enthusiastic cook Adam will accompany you on a range of culinary excursions, which can be anything from visiting a local Armagnac producer and tasting to visiting a butcher to learn all about charcuterie. You will learn real knowledge about real food, with Adam showing you how to cook proper homemade French meals served with just a little show and a lot of passion, all accompanied by some spectacular wines and Armagnac from local boutique producers.

Stay in a stunning renovated farmhouse in the glorious region of Gascony in South West of France with its own swimming pool and 50 acres of land. This is the perfect place to relax and unwind and your hosts Adam and Caroline will be on hand at all times to ensure your stay is as enjoyable as possible. There are also no single supplements for solo travellers, making this a fantastic holiday for singles.

Experience
Highlights

Design and create your own beautiful jewellery to take home.

Fun hands-on cookery classes and excursions to local producers.

Stay in a picturesque farmhouse with a large swimming pool.

Your Local Host:

Caroline & Adam

Caroline is a qualified jewellery making teacher from the UK and her husband Adam is a passionate cook. They moved to South West France looking for a change of lifestyle and now run their hugely successful jewellery making and activity holidays from Baron-Figués, where you will be staying. Caroline has been a qualified jewellery teacher for over 20 years and has experience in setting up and running training centres teaching practical skills. She is a senior instructor in both PMC and Art Clay and has experience in using a wide range of clays and other materials. Adam is a serious gastro enthusiast, as much in love with the local seasonal produce as the Gascons, and entirely committed to cooking the most incredible traditional dishes for guests as well as providing wonderful cooking courses. A passionate teacher, he can show you how to make traditional dishes such as Brandade de Morue (salt cod and potato) or Garbure (vegetable soup). For the painting course, the are joined by passionate local artists with huge knowledge and experience of the area as well as art to ensure you are taken to the right places to inspire your paintings.

Experience Itinerary

Arrival

– Arrive at Agen train station in the afternoon to be greeted by your friendly hosts before being driven to the farmhouse where your holiday will begin
– Settle into your delightful room before getting to know your fellow students over delicious aperitifs
– Enjoy a social evening with a 3 course gourmet dinner served in the farmhouse kitchen along with a short introduction from your hosts about what to expect over the next few days

Accommodation

You’ll stay in a gorgeous 150-year-old farmhouse with three beautifully appointed guest en-suite twin/double bedrooms, and one of the main attractions of this farmhouse is its large open plan traditional kitchen. Guests can sit around the homely table, that seats 14 guests, and share delicious meals prepared by Caroline’s husband.

Attached to the farmhouse is a recently renovated gite. The gite has been sympathetically restored to a very high standard and also contains two twin/double bedrooms.

Features
– Set in 50 acres of parkland, an area of incredible natural beauty famous for its gastronomy and wines
– Heated outdoor swimming pool (12m x 6m)
– All twin/double bedrooms have private ensuite bathrooms
– Open plan farmhouse kitchen and large living area with TV
– WiFi available

bedroom in gascony

Glass cutting; using glass frits, powders, and moulds

– This morning after breakfast you will go to a local delightful village market to explore the area to discuss your first project designs with the rest of the group and your tutor Caroline
– You will then return home to begin your first jewellery making class
– Today you will begin with an introduction to glass fusing, including cutting skills and technical information
– Caroline will teach you the basic techniques with using glass to give you maximum freedom to develop your own designs
– Throughout the day you will experiment with glass, glass frits and powders, and using moulds
– The course will encourage you to think creatively about how the jewellery will be worn and students will be shown how to create holes and fittings incorporated as part of the fused piece and will also experiment with attaching fittings and bails
– Late afternoon you will visit a beautiful chateau famous for its aperitifs and wines for an afternoon of wine tasting
– Dinner will be served back at the farmhouse giving you time to relax in the lounge or by the swimming pool firstly, or to take advantage of one of the onsite activities such as table tennis or cycling

Accommodation

You’ll stay in a gorgeous 150-year-old farmhouse or neighbouring gite.

bedroom in gascony

Taster of lampworking and layering glass fusing pieces

– After a leisurely breakfast, you will learn to make your first glass bead or glass earrings using the technique of a torch
– Lunch will be served by the pool or in the farmhouse kitchen with views of the countryside all around to help inspire your creative side
– After lunch, you will continue to improve your glass skills including assembly, inclusions, kiln firing and slumping techniques
– You will gain confidence in choosing colours and designs to make your own unique glass pieces
– Early evening, you will visit a family run Armagnac distillery (which Gascony is famous for) and learn how it is made and the history behind it and, more importantly, tasting the Armagnac and local produce
– A 3 course gourmet meal will then be served back at the farmhouse kitchen accompanied with local delicious wines

Accommodation

You’ll stay in a gorgeous 150-year-old farmhouse or neighbouring gite.

country house in gascony

Free Day

– Today is a free day for you to spend at your leisure
– Choose to spend more time perfecting your glass fusing techniques and working on your jewellery in the studio, or take time to relax by the swimming pool with a good book
– All meals are included today, and enjoy a well-earned rest before your cookery experience begins!

 

 

Accommodation

You’ll stay in a gorgeous 150-year-old farmhouse or neighbouring gite.

bedroom in gascony

Culinary excursion and first cookery lesson

– After breakfast, it’s time to enter the kitchen and begin your culinary experience!
– Your host and chef Adam will be on hand at all times to ensure you learn as much as possible during informal and fun cookery lessons and culinary excursions
– Today Adam will accompany you on a culinary excursion which will be confirmed upon arrival depending on the group’s preference and the season
– You visit may include any of the following:  visits to a local duck farm, butcher, boulangerie/patisserie, vineyard, Armagnac producer, cheese maker, chocolatier, prune producer, organic farm or charcuterie
– You may also take an accompanied tour of the cultural and historical sights surrounding the school including Auch Cathedral, Chateau Henri IV, Collégiale at La Romieu or the art gallery at the Abbaye de Flaran
– After returning to the farmhouse, enjoy a leisurely lunch before your first cookery lesson
– Adam will teach you how to create a delicious 3 course French menu today
– After your lesson, you will enjoy a group dinner of the dishes you have prepared in the kitchen with a well-deserved glass on wine

Accommodation

You’ll stay in a gorgeous 150-year-old farmhouse or neighbouring gite.

bathroom shower and toilet

Culinary excursion and second cookery lesson

– Enjoy a leisurely breakfast this morning
– Adam will then accompany you on another culinary excursion to awaken your senses, introduce you to local life, and ignite your passion for fresh, local food
– You will then return to the farmhouse to enjoy a light lunch before reentering the kitchen for your second cookery course
– Learn to cook delicious country meals with Adam, with just a little show and a lot of passion as you learn about real French food, how to prepare it, cook it, and serve it
– Tonight’s dinner will be tasting the delicious French dishes you’ve learnt to cook and you will have a discussion about where to go tomorrow for your day excursion around this beautiful

Accommodation

You’ll stay in a gorgeous 150-year-old farmhouse or neighbouring gite.

living space in french house

Day group excursion

– Relax with a delicious breakfast this morning before heading out on a fun excursion for the day
– Today you’ll enjoy an excursion to a location of your choice!
– Your hosts will take you to either Dune de Pila, Bordeaux city, the Pyrenees mountains or Biarritz, depending on the groups preferences
– Explore the stunning scenery and relax on your final day, and enjoy lunch whilst you out
– This evening you’ll return home for your final dinner, where you’ll reflect on the week and how much you have learnt

Accommodation

You’ll stay in a gorgeous 150-year-old farmhouse or neighbouring gite.

bedroom in gascony

Departure

– After breakfast, guests are asked to check out by 10am
– You are welcome to relax and enjoy some free time if your flight is not until later in the day, before being taken to the airport or train station for your return journey
– You will return home with fantastic memories, fabulous cookery skills, beautiful unique glass jewellery and memories and new skills to last you a lifetime

Reviews (4)

Anon

Monday 23rd September, 2019

Best French Holidays is so aptly named. Of all the trips we have made to France this was the best. Nothing is too much trouble for Caroline and Adam and from the time they picked us up until the time they dropped us off, everything was perfect. Go...

Best French Holidays is so aptly named. Of all the trips we have made to France this was the best. Nothing is too much trouble for Caroline and Adam and from the time they picked us up until the time they dropped us off, everything was perfect. Gourmet meals were provided every lunch time and evening with as much amazing French wine as we could mange ! The tuition we received in art was second to none and we loved learning to cook and also enjoyed some excellent yoga classes. We will be back for sure !

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A Smith, Marlow, United Kingdom

Friday 16th August, 2019

Caroline and Adam were warm, kind and generous hosts. The tuition of both the jewellery and cooking classes was first rate. I was very very pleased with the pieces of jewellery that I produced and Adam made the cookery class great fun and I came away...

Caroline and Adam were warm, kind and generous hosts. The tuition of both the jewellery and cooking classes was first rate. I was very very pleased with the pieces of jewellery that I produced and Adam made the cookery class great fun and I came away with lots of ideas. Their school is in an idyllic, peaceful setting with beautiful views. I can thoroughly recommend this course. Lots of laughs, fun, sun and good food.

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B Marie, Bromley, United Kingdom

Thursday 1st August, 2019

A brilliant holiday. Caroline and Adam are excellent hosts. I came back with several pieces of jewellery to many compliments. The cooking experience was fun and there was much wine tasting and laughter. It is a beautiful part of France and I was take...

A brilliant holiday. Caroline and Adam are excellent hosts. I came back with several pieces of jewellery to many compliments. The cooking experience was fun and there was much wine tasting and laughter. It is a beautiful part of France and I was taken to some of the little villages nearby, to markets and Toulouse too. I made new friends. It was one of the best holidays I have had. I hope to go back again!

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D D Wakeman, New Orleans, United States

Friday 7th September, 2018

The classes were fun and well taught; the food was excelllent; the mix of classes and tours made for a lovely experience.

The classes were fun and well taught; the food was excelllent; the mix of classes and tours made for a lovely experience.

Read more

Location Information

Set in the heart of Gascony surrounded by 50 acres of private unspoilt meadows, the your farmhouse accommodation is tucked away in the Gascon countryside. Although the farmhouse is a rural retreat, the bustling picturesque towns of Nérac and Condom are within easy reach.

Nearest airports:
Toulouse (1hr 40min), Bordeaux (1hr 40min), Pau (2 hours) or Bergerac (2 hours)

Complimentary pre-booked train transfers:
Return transfers to and from Agen train station (30 minutes) are included in the course price.

Trains run to Agen from across the SNCF network from where you can take advantage of the free transfer. Optional private airport transfers can be booked for an additional cost.

  • 7 nights accommodation in a private twin/double room
  • 2 jewellery making workshops (on days 2 and 3)
  • 2 cookery lessons (on days 5 and 6)
  • 2 culinary excursions to local villages or towns
  • 1 day excursion to either Dune de Pila, Bordeaux city, the Pyrenees mountains or Biarritz, depending on the groups preferences
  • Vineyard visit and wine tasting session
  • Armagnac distillery visit and tasting session
  • Access to the jewellery studio daily to work on your pieces
  • All materials and equipment for jewellery making
  • Tips on how to start your own jewellery business
  • All cooking materials, ingredients and notes
  • Transport to and from all excursions
  • All breakfasts, lunches, and 3 course gourmet dinners daily
  • All refreshments (including wine etc)
  • Pick up and drop off from Agen train station
  • Check in any time after 4pm on day 1 and check out by 10am on day 8

FAQs

Suitable for all cooking levels from beginners to advanced with a minimum age 18. Your hosts and tutors speak English and French, and lessons will be taught in English. Dietary requirements will be catered for if these are communicated in advance of booking.

These holidays make great singles holidays as there are no single supplements and you will have your own private room for no additional cost. There is a discount for 2 people travelling together and sharing a room.

This holiday starts on Sundays and runs on set dates from March to November. Holidays run for 7 nights / 8 days.

Please find below some information regarding the accommodation and location of the holiday which may be useful when deciding if this is the right holiday for you; should you have an further questions, please contact us and we will be happy to help.
- We generally do not recommend this location for those with restricted mobility.
- This holiday is based in the countryside, and does include some walking.
- The accommodation has no bedrooms or bathrooms on the ground floor, therefore one must be comfortable with stairs.

During your free time, there is plenty to do at your farmhouse accommodation including relaxing by the heated swimming pool (May-September). The accommodation offers a range of extracurricular activities onsite which are free of charge including table tennis, basketball, shooting, archery, cycling and board games to name a few!

There are numerous fêtes, music festivals and exhibitions in the surrounding areas through the year and your host Caroline will be happy to advise you during your stay. The closest towns are Nérac and Condom, and your host will be happy to suggest activities and transport should you wish to explore these during your stay.