Sydney has a wealth of hands-on classes and workshops on offer at this time of year, including mastering the art of grilling prawns on the barbeque, soldering fine jewellery and moulding your very own ceramic cup. Conveniently, many of these classes include drinks and nibbles so you can bring a friend and pick up new tips and tricks together.

Make your own rings at Blonde
There’s nothing more special than owning a piece of bespoke jewellery. Now there’s a chance to make and customise your own silver or solid nine-carat gold rings at Blonde. As part of a two-hour workshop, you’ll get hands-on experience with understanding the basics of silver or goldsmithing, as well as techniques including awning, annealing, soldering, filing and polishing. By the end, you’ll walk away with two new handmade rings.
When: Every weekend throughout January
Cost: $199 for sterling silver, $349 for solid gold or $499 for mixed metal

Have a go at wheel-throwing at Clay Sydney
Roll up your sleeves and get ready to be the star of your own Swayze moment – without the awkwardness. In a super relaxed setting at Clay Sydney’s Marrickville Studio, where BYO drinks are encouraged, you’ll get the chance to spin and mould yourself a little souvenir – whether it’s a small cup, vase, bowl or planter – the choice is yours. It’ll then get fired and be ready to be picked up four weeks later.
When: Every Wednesday to Sunday
Cost: $85

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Blend your own gin at Archie Rose
Since Archie Rose Distillery became the first distillery to open in Sydney since the 1850s, there has been a growing interest in the art of local spirit production. In this class, gin lovers can learn all about how Archie Rose makes its drops while sipping on a G&T, provided on arrival. Then you’ll have the chance to blend your own tipple with a choice of botanical distillates and take home two varieties of personalised gins.
When: Throughout January
Cost: $119

Barbeque seafood to perfection at Sydney Seafood School
It’s not an Aussie summer without a barbeque and seafood. But handling both can be tricky business, which is why one of Sydney Seafood School’s most popular classes is about both. Take a deep dive into how to clean and “honeycomb” squid, how to get perfectly crispy skin on fish fillets and the best way to grill prawns. Plus, once the class is over, there’ll be a chance to enjoy all the food you’ve made.
When: January 13, February 3 & 24
Cost: $180

Bead your own bracelet at Hencla
Pop into Hencla’s breezy North Bondi store for its Beads and Bubbles night. With guidance from host and owner Gina Hart, learn the tips and tricks on how to create a beaded bracelet using a selection of high-end and sometimes vintage beads. To help get the creative juices flowing, there’ll be plenty of bubbles and nibbles served during the two-hour session.
When: February 8 & 22
Cost: $120

Make boutique candles at Provider Store
Unwind in the calming studio at Surry Hills’ Provider Store while you sip on natural wine, eat some cheese and learn about the candle making process. You’ll get the chance to select a fragrance from the store’s boutique scent range to customise your own wax, which will then be poured into one of Provider Store’s signature ceramic cups. When the candle finishes, the vessel can be reused as a coffee cup or brought back to the store to be refilled.
When: January 20, February 3 & 17
Cost: $165

Learn to draw or paint at the National Art School
If you’ve got more than a couple of hours up your sleeve, why not commit to one of the week-long courses at the National Art School? There are a number of classes on offer. Choose from portrait drawing to life drawing or drawing with threads and textiles. There’s also oil painting or abstract painting. Or, if you can’t choose between painting or drawing, there’s a Drawing and Painting With Confidence class that covers the fundamentals of both.
When: Various
Cost: From $396

Build a step stool at Among The Trees
Second-hand timber is bountiful. Unfortunately, plenty of it ends up in landfill. But Among The Trees will teach you how to use reclaimed wood to build a step stool and any other DIY woodworking project at its hands-on workshop. You’ll also learn how to accurately measure and mark, project-design, and safely and effectively use a variety of woodworking hand tools.
When: January 28
Cost: $269

Master sourdough at Bourke Street Bakery
In case you decided against joining in on the viral sourdough baking during the pandemic, here’s your chance now to learn from the experts. During a two-hour class, learn everything from how to mix your dough to moulding and shaping techniques, plus how to take care of your bread starter. You’ll walk away with one loaf ready to eat, your own hand-shaped doughs to bake at home and Bourke Street Bakery’s 12-year-old sourdough starter.
When: From February 17
Cost: $135–150

Stretch your own cheese at Omnom
It’s always so satisfying to make something from scratch, and cheese is no exception. At Omnom’s Rosebery headquarters, you’ll learn – while sipping on bottomless bubbles – how to stretch, fold and ball up curds into almost one kilo of melty bocconcini and oozy burrata to take home. You’ll also master the basics of milk selection using store-bought milk, acidification and coagulation so you can continue making your own cheese at home.
When: Throughout January and February
Cost: $99