The best self-improvement classes in Singapore

Elevate your skills in 2018 with these self-improvement classes
Poppy Flora Studio
By Jolene Hooy |

Fulfil your fantasies of being a musician, chef, artist, florist or calligrapher with courses that are designed to inspire and unleash the hibernating creative within you.

Shopping, Florists

Indulge in floral art

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Poppy Flora Studio

Trading her pen for a pair of gardening scissors, former advertising executive Sarah Lim followed her love for all things beautiful when she founded Poppy Flora Studio in 2000. Lim and her team handcraft every bouquet you see in the store. Don’t expect uniformly rounded globes of roses – each flower is allowed to curve and bend to create an airy, bountiful and vibrant mix that looks as if, as Lim describes, they’re ‘dancing’.  Every last Saturday of the month, Poppy allows you to pick out flowers of your choosing to fit a bouquet bag – think of it as a fit-all-you-can flower buffet – for $69, mimicking Europe’s flower markets. Besides roses, lilies and tulips that are available all year round, Lim sources the globe for seasonal flowers. In August, it’s sweet peas, zinnias and dahlias. For last-minute, grab-and-go bouquets, Poppy does pocket posies of both fresh ($18) and dried flowers ($19) – the latter comes with a handmade paper poppy. (Because real poppy flowers aren’t allowed to be imported into Singapore due to their narcotic properties.)

DETAILS $808/four one-hour lessons. Includes a photography session and four masterpieces. Lessons available every Tuesday to Sunday between 10am and 6pm.

Things to do, Classes and workshops

Build a miniature garden

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Plant Story

The Miniature Garden Workshop may be the solution for those who don’t exactly have green fingers but still fancy a little greenery in their workspace. These adorable bite-sized gardens are insanely low maintenance – perfect for scatterbrains who can never remember to water their plants. Choose to craft a rainforest (aka terrarium), desert, air or water garden during the one-hour session guided by trainers. The terrarium is self-watering and only needs to be rehydrated every two to four months. Upsize your garden or create an additional one by purchasing the DIY kit. And after all that hard work, give your mind (and fingers) a well-deserved break at Plant Story’s serene garden sanctuary.

DETAILS $80/single class.

Music, Music venues

Pick up a new instrument

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Ukulele Movement

Are uke ready for a new year and a (musically inclined) new you? Join the Ukulele Movement and be a pro at the pint-sized instrument in no time. There are four modules to choose from and Module 1 – Beginner Ukulele Method is perfect for freshies looking to dip their toes into music or occasional strummers hoping to polish their skills. If you are clueless about chords, strumming style or rhythm, you are in good hands as the course covers all the basics. Get ready to impress your friends with popular songs like Viva La Vida and Leaving on a Jet Plane by the end of the course. Learning goes beyond the classroom with Ukulele Movement’s exciting list of events such as concerts, workshops, open mic sessions and uke outings.

DETAILS $320/12-week course. One hour a week with four to eight students per class. Textbooks included, instruments not included.

Things to do, Classes and workshops

Learn calligraphy

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Craft Varies

Scrolling through your Instagram feed and seeing endless posts of dreamy calligraphy pieces? The Wellness in Writing workshop is the perfect jumping board into the world of calligraphy. Clarence Valerius Wee of Craft Varies has been mastering the art of calligraphy for over eight years. Expect some basic drilling, followed by over an hour of practice during the session.

DETAILS $50/single class. Every Saturday from 3pm to 4.30pm.

Things to do, Classes and workshops

Be a masterchef

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Expat Kitchen

Ditch the instant noodles and level up your cooking game with Expat Kitchen’s interactive cooking classes. Crafted to suit people of all levels – from those who can barely fry an egg to the foodie who dishes out three-course meals – these classes have you chopping, dicing and slicing for over three hours, exposing you to different cuisines and flavours in the process. You know what they say – abs are made in the kitchen, so boil, grill, fry and season your way to a hot bod this year by joining the carb-free dinner class, featuring dishes like lemongrass chicken kebabs and fish salad.

DETAILS $165/three-hour.

More to explore