Is a Bluprint (Craftsy) Membership Worth it? What are the Pros and Cons? Is it the Best Option For Learning My Craft?
A Bluprint Membership is just one choice among many online craft class subscription sites. So, what makes it worth it and who is it not the best fit for?
There are several ways to learn a new craft or skill and even advance your skills in a craft you already know well…it can be hard to know where to invest your dollars for the best educational resources. And, with free options like YouTube, blog tutorials, and Facebook groups…you may wonder what’s the point of paying at all.
There are several reasons paying for a class is worth it. The biggest reason for me is TIME. It’s just much faster and more straightforward to go directly to a class, taught by a pro, that is organized and thorough.
There are, of course, a few reasons you wouldn’t need a paid subscription. Keep reading to learn the pros and cons of subscribing to a Bluprint Membership.
What Makes a Good Online Craft Class Platform?
These are the things I’m looking for in a quality online craft class platform:
- Easy to Navigate Website & App
- Content is Updated and Relevant
- Selection of Classes and Topics
- Class Format
- Excellent Teachers
- Forum to Ask Questions
- Ways to Share Work and Get Feedback
- Community Engagement
- Great Customer Service (Easy to Cancel, Pause, Change Subscription)
- Materials & Supplies Are Easy to Order
- Pricing Options (Monthly, Annual, Pay Per Class)
- Bonuses & Perks
First, I am a Bluprint affiliate (read full disclosures here), but this review has not been directly influenced by the company, I have not received money or free items as payment for this review. In fact I became a subscribing member on my own before I was an affiliate. Everything mentioned in this review has been purchased with my own money and these opinions are my own. As an affiliate, I will only receive compensation when you click on links in this post and make a purchase. This will not cost you any extra and I will make sure to keep this post updated with current coupons or offers as they are available to me.
I’m going to go pretty in depth in this Bluprint membership website review, covering all the above criteria. So, let’s get into all the knitty-gritty, lol.
Bluprint Membership Review (Formerly Craftsy)
This is the membership site that I personally use and it’s where I learned to knit. I joined when it was called Craftsy Unlimited, but they have re-branded and changed the look and their website name to Bluprint in 2018.
They used to only offer individual classes you could purchase for streaming or as a physical DVD, which is still an option.
But, I prefer using the unlimited Bluprint membership because I have access to EVERYTHING. I can jump around and watch a snippet of a video, try different classes, try a new skill in a totally new category (like hand lettering, watercolor, photography!)
Bluprint is also expanding its library to include entertain shows like “Off Our Needles” that are similar to things you’d see on cable or network TV. So, it’s becoming similar to subscribing to a regular Network channel in addition to the educational lessons, also.
Website & App
Both the Website and App are easy to navigate and search. You can find classes by clicking “explore” and going to the category, by searching, or by going to your “library” where they keep track of your watch history, saved videos/watchlist, bookmarks (you can save your place in a video!), and follows (categories, instructors, etc).
As far as crafting…Bluprint has the best selection I’ve seen. These are the current categories:
- Bake (99 Classes)
- Cake Decorating (187 Classes)
- Cook (111 Classes)
- Crochet (50 Classes, 112 Project Kits, 642 Free Patterns)
- Dance (8 Classes…New Topic)
- Draw (75 Classes, 4 Drawing Kits)
- Embroider (50 Classes, 44 Project Kits, 100 Free Patterns)
- Entertain (16 Classes)
- Family (91 Classes…some for kids, across all topics)
- Fitness (23 Classes)
- Healthy Eating (44 Classes)
- Home + Garden (52…across many topics, 16 garden specific)
- Jewelry (50 Classes)
- Knit (163 Classes, 229 Project Kits, 470 Free Patterns)
- Paint (80 Classes, 1 Kit for Watercolors)
- Paper Crafts (44 Classes, Only kits are kids crafts)
- Photo (73 Classes)
- Quilt (186 Classes, 260 Project Kits, 442 Free Patterns)
- Sew (191 Classes, 43 Project Kits, 988 Free Patterns)
- Woodwork (29 Classes)
- Write (13 Classes…New Topic)
- Yoga (4 Classes…looks like these are part of “fitness” as well)
There are a few topics that are outside the “crafting” category, but you can probably see why I love this app so much. Bluprint’s focus and biggest topics are relating to yarn and fabric! Yay!
I’d say the next biggest categories are related to cooking, drawing & painting. Which are great to have access to as well. It’s not meant just for you. My husband has watched some classes and there are some great kids classes too.
They are also adding new classes all the time. I’m really excited about the writing category, which has classes on publishing children’s book and bullet journaling. So fun.
Note: Each class includes several lessons, covering multiple techniques, sometimes multiple patterns, etc. So, there is A LOT that is covered…even in the categories that have less than 50 or so classes.
There is also a wide range of experience levels. Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced classes so you can learn beyond what’s available for free elsewhere.
The bulk of classes are for beginners…but another thing I love about Bluprint is the DEPTH they go into. From Intermediate to Advanced these classes can really take you all the way to a professional level.
There are design classes, pattern making, advance techniques, etc that I haven’t seen in some of the other platforms.
If you’re looking to grow your handmade business Bluprint has a corner on the market for crafting & handmade skills. While they have a few photography classes, I’ll be reviewing some other online craft class options that are better suited for the business side of selling handmade. I would view a Bluprint membership as part of a handmade business strategy, not a standalone resource.
Let’s take a look at how a Bluprint class is structured to review the pros and cons of their format.
What I like about Bluprint is that the view and layout is very similar when going from desktop to mobile. It’s very organized and intuitive so you can easily navigate the lessons and class materials to find exactly what you need.
Here are some screenshots of the same class on desktop vs mobile.
The desktop classes include all the features, like the comments section where you have access to the class instructor. You can share pictures of what you’re making to ask for feedback, as questions, and get encouragement from others taking the class.
At the bottom of the page you can also see related classes in the same topic or by the same teacher. There will be links to purchase class materials below (like yarn or other supplies), too.
The downloadable class materials (like patterns and instructions) are under the materials tab, similar to the mobile app below.
On the mobile app you won’t have access to the “comments”, like you are on desktop. The Bluprint mobile app is great for being able to watch videos on the go, bookmark things, save classes, episodes, view class materials like a pattern (I can print patterns from my phone too).
The mobile app will keep playing in the background, and the class materials will come up below the video, unless you switch to fullscreen mode. This is great because you can follow the pattern and watch the screen at the same time without printing anything.
If you start playing on one device it will keep track of where you are and start where you left off when you switch devices too!
The only con here is that the mobile app is missing the comments section. Everything else about the layout is excellent.
Something that is invaluable when learning a new skill is having help and feedback when you have questions. Bluprint does such a great job at this.
The comments section, below each lesson on the desktop website, is where you can ask questions and post pictures of what you’re making to get feedback.
The class instructors are available to help and respond as quickly as they can. This is so awesome, because it means we have access to TOP professionals in their craft to answer our questions and help us improve our skills!
Bluprint also has a Knitting & Crochet Makers group on Facebook that is pretty active. I’m a group member and enjoy seeing all kinds of posts of people’s projects, patterns, questions, etc. It’s another great place to get feedback and help with anything tricky.
I recently contacted customer service through chat on their desktop site. It was a BREEZE.
They updated my service to the current sale price no questions asked.
And, they even allowed me to order a starter kit at the promotional rate, even though I’m not a new member.
Over a year ago, before I was a subscriber, I ordered some fabric and noticed it had a small stain when I opened the package. I contacted them (I think via email) and they didn’t hesitate to send me a replacement…and when it arrived I discovered a free package of charm squares! Amazing!
I can really appreciate above and beyond customer service. They really know how to make a customer into a loyal fan!
I’ve also found that their shipping is super fast, too. So, that’s a bonus!
Speaking of supplies…Bluprint has a great shop section, which is not something you find with other craft class platforms. And, the best part of the shop is their project kits that go along with the classes.
I just opened my Knitting Starter Box that I ordered so I can review it for the blog (coming soon). I’m only halfway through one of the 3 projects and I love that it has exactly what I need to follow along with the class. Everything is really nice quality too.
There are so many project kits (722 total as of today). You can customize most of them, they’ll send you enough supplies for the size you choose (priced accordingly), and you can choose to add notions if you don’t already have them.
I’ve also enjoyed great prices and excellent quality when ordering individual supplies, like yarn, knitting needles, and other notions. They frequently have sales…and I love getting an extra 15% off and free shipping ALL THE TIME for being an annual subscriber (see more on that below).
It’s super convenient to be able to order supplies that coordinate with the classes I’m watching. And, each class will list the supplies needed on the class page so you can shop right there…even on mobile. No guessing involved!
Pricing & Offers
Bluprint’s regular pricing is very competitive with the other platforms out there. Let’s break it down:
The annual subscription is the best deal.
It comes out to ONLY $6.67 per month!
PLUS, you get extra 15% off all the time, on top of sales. And 12 classes to keep forever (issued 3 at a time with coupon codes in your email).
A monthly subscription is also an option. You pay a little more at $7.99 a month, only get 1 class to keep, and miss out on free shipping.
This is still a good option if you are on a budget or unsure if you want to go ahead with purchasing the full year. I did this for a few months before switching so I could get the other perks and savings.
There are promotional offers occasionally, too. I’ll try to keep this post updated with the latest offer. Here’s what’s available right now:
Through April 7th, 2019 You can Use this link to get 50% off your first three months! This works with Annual AND Monthly plans.
Monthly will get 3 months at $3.99…then the price goes back to $7.99.
Annual subscribers will pay only $69.99 for the year!
Plus you still get all the perks above, too. Sweet!
My FAVORITE way to sign up for Bluprint is by ordering a Starter Box. Even better than the discount option above, you can get a box PACKED FULL of supplies to get you started. There are boxes for:
- Sewing (clothes)
- Colored Pencil Drawing
- Cake Decorating
There was Crochet and Embroidery at one point, but it looks like those are sold out.
The Starter Box INCLUDES an annual Bluprint Membership. So, its a great way to get a discount on your subscription AND get a bunch of really awesome supplies.
I ordered the Knitting box and I was so surprised at how fast it arrived and I was blown away by the quality. The yarn is all 100% wool and super nice. There’s enough supplies for 3 full patterns.
The Knitting box is one of the lower priced starter boxes, too. This is the best value, especially when you look at the prices of buying everything separately:
- Annual Bluprint Membership: $79.99
- Mitts Knitting Kit (Yarn, Pattern, Notions Kit): $31.45
- Hat Knitting Kit (Yarn, Pattern): $28.00 (notions kit not longer available)
- Circular Needles for Hat: $6.72
- Cowl Knitting Kit (Yarn, Pattern, Notions Kit): $31.11
- Exclusive Bonuses Not Available to Purchase Separately: Canvas Tote, Notions Case, Scissors
- Total Value (From Checking Current Prices): Approximately $177.27!!
The other starter kits seem to be similarly valued. Lots of great, high quality supplies perfectly designed to take all the guesswork out of getting started with a new skill.
Note: Bluprint offers a 30 day money back guarantee. They used to have a free trial, but now they have a 30 day refund policy instead. So my recommendation is to go ahead and get the annual subscription so you get better pricing, plus perks, but you’ll still get all your money back if you end up not liking it, not using it enough, or would rather try a different program, etc.
Just MAKE SURE you cancel before 30 days are up. I don’t believe you can get a refund when you purchase a starter kit without returning items…so just be aware of that, too. Mark it on your calendar in your phone so you don’t forget.
I also recommend signing up for your Bluprint Membership DIRECTLY through themrather than itunes or another device. The promotional pricing and coupon codes only work through them and It’s much easier to deal with Bluprint for customer service anyway. If you sign up through itunes, for example, you’ll have to manage your subscription with them…no thanks.
My Personal Experience
I already had learned the basics of crochet as a kid. My Mom taught me and she is still available whenever I have questions.
But, when I wanted to learn knitting I didn’t have any personal resources.
So, I tried YouTube and tutorial websites. I figured out casting on, knit, purl, and binding off. But, never got past making practice swatches. I couldn’t read a pattern, my technique was all over the place (which was making it uncomfortable and awkward to hold everything). I tried following free patterns a few times and became so frustrated I gave up.
When I started looking for crochet patterns for hats, mittens, and socks to make Christmas gifts, I kept coming across all these beautiful knit patterns. I really wanted to knit them and it motivated to try one more time.
I wished there was a way to learn in-person with a teacher, but didn’t have time to go take a class locally.
When I came across a coupon for craftsy (before they changed the name to Bluprint) I figured I’d try it and if it didn’t work I’d only be out a few dollars. If it worked I could get my hands on those gorgeous knitting patterns and make some awesome stuff.
So, What Happened?
The first class I took was “Knit Faster with Continental Knitting“, taught by Lorilee Beltman. I took this class because it taught how to knit by holding the working yarn in your left hand…which is what I’m used to as a crocheter.
The class is laid out in a logical order, divided into lessons that you can easily flip through, and filmed professionally so you can see multiple angles, close ups, etc. It helped me SO much with nailing down the basics so I could confidently move on to harder skills!
This class was so much more comprehensive than anything I had found for free. It made me excited to learn more, rather than discouraged and frustrated.
The second class I took was “Essential Skills for Sock Knitting”, taught by Ann Budd. This class was excellent! The teacher made knitting on dpns so much less intimidating, and she walked me through each part of knitting a sock so simply.
The class materials are 35 pages of info which I printed and keep as a reference. I was finally able to grasp following a pattern, figure out gauge, and learned lots of techniques I had never tried.
And, after that class I was able to go back and knit some of the free patterns that I failed before; equipped with new knowledge and skills.
I’ve also watched single lessons in other classes to learn specific techniques, which was really helpful. I’ve watched classes in other topics, like a beginner hand lettering class, a product photography class, and others. My husband has watched some lessons on pen and ink drawing to get some ideas for his art, too.
Every class I watch it’s instantly clear how well organized and thorough they are.
It might be obvious that I’m a huge fan of Bluprint, lol. I really think they’ve done such a great job in creating an easy to use, high quality platform. It’s hard to find any negatives.
The one area I think they could improve is that some of their classes seem a little dated as far as fashion trends. But, they are adding new classes all the time to stay up-to-date, too. I honestly think its a strength that they have more seasoned, experienced instructors, rather than trendy, fashionable ones, too.
I hope you’ve found this review helpful! If you still have any questions please leave them in the comments and I’d be happy to answer them.