Enrollment for the 2023 Repertoire course open in August

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What's Repertoire?

Repertoire is an 9-week online training program for aspiring pattern designers who want to become experts at what you do and be able to create any type of pattern you set your mind to.

I believe it’s important to build a strong confidence in your abilities and skills, if you want to succeed as a pattern designer. And the best way to do that is to educate yourself in the craft of pattern design, about different types of patterns, how they have developed and evolved throughout history and how they are composed.

But perhaps most of all; to get real and practical experience with creating different types of patterns yourself. And that's exactly what Repertoire is about.

Whether you’re in the early stages of your pattern design evolution, or a seasoned designer, this course will give you extensive knowledge about pattern styles and types, the technical skills for creating a range of different pattern types and styles, from simple to the most advanced and complex. And it's a treasure trove of inspiration and ideas for varying your work.

At the end of the course, you will have a large repertoire of patterns inspired by your favorite historical styles - and the know-how to add your own twist to them.

9 weeks where we focus on getting good at designing patterns

  • The Repertoire course has 6 modules released over a period of 9 weeks, each one teaching about the patterns and techniques of a specific composition type and gradually building in complexity, starting with the most simple composition type and patterns, and ending with the most intricate and complex.
  • In each module you are introduced to some of the most iconic and beloved historic pattern styles (and some that you may not know of yet), with video lessons in pattern history, style studies, step-by-step tutorials and practical implementation assignments.
  • All lessons are taught by Bärbel, in bite-size videos (with closed captions & transcripts).
  • As a student you have full support by Bärbel and the support team, a private community and also through live Q&A sessions.

Let's make you a pattern design expert! Here's how:

By learning from historic patterns and styles

Complex patterns broken down into steps that will show you exactly how to create patterns in your favorite styles.

Easy to follow drawing techniques and practices, closing the “gap” between what you see in your head and what comes out on paper. 

Pattern tutorials organized by the complexity of different motifs and compositions, to gradually and steadily advance your skills.

Composition studies and practices to train your eye for what works and what doesn't, so you can create sophisticated and intriguing patterns of your own.

Introductions to a plethora of historic styles and motifs, patterns and composition types, that will help you diversify your collections and portfolio.

The intriguing history of patterns

To create patterns for the future we can learn from the successes in the past

Come join me in a journey through time, where we will learn about some of the most iconic and beloved pattern styles in history - and how they have evolved and are now influencing the patterns of today. 

Ancient Egyptian

Ancient Greek & Roman

Ancient South American


Indian Floral




Toile de Jouy

Arts and Crafts

Art Nouveau


And more...

Meet Bärbel Dressler

Your Repertoire teacher

Accomplished surface pattern designer, experienced online educator and pattern historian


By studying historical patterns and styles Bärbel taught herself advanced pattern design and how to create complex, layered and flowing patterns. Her love for historic patterns and styles has highly influenced her work and has opened doors for working with companies around the world.

She has taught over 30.000 students about pattern history and how to create patterns in classic styles, drawing and illustration.

Bärbel lives in Stockholm, Sweden where she runs her design and education business Bear Bell Productions. She has designed patterns for home decor, home textiles, fashion and marketing assets for companies in Europe and North America since 2014.

One is never bored when learning from Bärbel. She brings fresh surprises, challenges you to use another media, or to look around and up to find real inspiration. She has great and deep knowledge, experience and high standards in what she does. She’s like an actress, making the studies a joyful adventure.

- Vesta Dobreva-Stefanov

Bärbel makes learning fun and is an inspiring teacher and brings joy to the classes. Her historical knowledge of pattern design is second to none. She guides you through designing in Adobe Illustrator in a way that is easy to follow and build upon.

- Aline Doornhof


Student stories

Margaret Meagher

Learning from Bärbel has opened me up to the immense possibilities in the use of historical pattern styles. Her instructions are detailed, so I know what steps to follow when I create my own work. This has helped me create better patterns, in many more styles and I now have a collection of patterns that are ready to be made available for sale on Spoonflower.

Rashmi Pannikar

Before I didn't know how & where to start sketching any given historic motif, or how to create a simple scale pattern, but now I have a process & tools for creating complex patterns with ease. With Bärbel’s lessons I not only made a simple scale pattern but also created a complex composition inspired by the Ancient Greek & Roman era. I feel so proud about myself that I have made this progress.

Regina Kareev

I've learned a lot about historical styles and classic pattern types, where they come from, how they're connected and how I can use elements from them in my own work. Now I'm able to design patterns with traditional layout and motifs. I feel that my designs are becoming stronger and I have more confidence in my work and I've just launched my first collection of fabric and wallpaper on Spoonflower. As George Santayana has said: “To know your future you must know your past.”

Mairin Kareli

Bärbel’s teaching is the only one I have found that helps with planning and understanding pattern composition beyond straight /half drop/brick repeat and instead expanding them into patterns like Ogees, Scales, Indian Florals and Arts & Crafts and explaining why these they look the way they do and how create that yourself. It’s so useful and really expands ones ability to create.

Christine Giarusso

I feel more educated and my skills have vastly improved. This has given me the confidence to add my work to POD sites, where I'm seeing sales!


Jennie Enström

I feel so proud of how much I have learned and how I use the new knowledge and inspiration to test different ways to draw and make pattern that expand my horizon!


Elisabeth Wilks

One the biggest take away for me is how I look at the history of different types of patterns and designs and how they inform our modern patterns. This has made me grow and develop into a more informed pattern designer and be able to create more in-depth patterns.

Tracey Graver

Barbel has broken down complex motifs, history, and pattern design concepts into manageable steps. She encourages me to take chances and try - and gives such valuable feedback for everyone to learn from. She makes me believe I can do it!

Michelle Saunders

Bärbel's classes engage my curiosity and urge me to push my self in a gentle but caring way. I love learning the history and background, it brings so much more depth to the learning and has challenged me to explore my skills as my styles develops improves.

Susan Felicity

The historical pattern information is unique in the world of online pattern design education. Bärbel provides extremely well structured lessons, presented in a lovely genuine, easy-to-understand style.

Mary Roxanne Harmon

I've learned that there's so much more to patterns than just creating them. Bärbel's lessons are so thorough, knowledgeable, and inspiring! She pushes your boundaries to help you create the best version of pattern designer self and your designs!

Marcela Shaw

Bärbel has given me an incredible amount of information about the historical  development of patterns and what elements make those patterns unique. I’ve grown as an artist by learning techniques for creating different patterns and exploring new drawing styles.