Industry overview

The fashion industry is highly competitive and critical to the growth and development of the global economy. As a dynamic sector, it especially needs graduates who can respond creatively and effectively to its constantly evolving challenges and opportunities.

UK fashion has a unique spirit and energy that captures the imagination of the world. From high street to haute couture, UK fashion is international in outlook, turning trendsetting creativity into a dynamic global industry, with boosted by fashion promotion and journalism.

Some of the most iconic brands in contemporary fashion are from the UK, with young designers understanding that, to achieve success, they need to be both creative and commercial.

A major strength of the UK fashion industry is the strong link between designers and retailers. The trends and innovations on the catwalk cascade onto the British high street, creating a multi-billion pound industry.

The direct value of the UK fashion industry to the UK economy is £26 billion; up from £21 billion in 2009. Fashion is the largest employer of all the UK's creative industries, supporting an estimated 797,000 jobs. (Source: Oxford Economics 2014)



The world of fashion offers you an abundance of employment possibilities and career choices, such as:

  • Savile Row tailor
  • Couturier
  • Designer
  • Creative pattern cutter
  • Fashion editor
  • Production manager
  • Studio manager
  • Fashion buyer
  • Retail store manager
  • Visual merchandiser
  • Fashion marketing and PR manager
  • International and licensing manager
  • Merchandiser
  • Promotions manager
  • Fashion content curator
  • Kids’ wear allocator
  • Wholesale and marketing executive
  • Fashion journalist
  • Fashion photographer
  • Textile specialist
  • Hand embroiderer
  • Showroom manager
  • Art director
  • Editorial assistant
  • Trend researcher
  • Sponsorship manager
  • Prop assistant
  • Arts educator.


What you can earn

Research shows that starting salaries for graduates of fashion-related courses average at around £17-18,000 a year.


Graduate employment

Our graduates have gone on to work for a variety of big name design, retail, publishing and PR companies, including:

  • Asos
  • Erdem
  • French Connection
  • Gran Moda
  • Hugo Boss
  • JMH Lifestyle Group
  • Jaeger
  • Karen Millen
  • LK Bennett
  • Lipsy
  • Reem Alasadi
  • Selfridges
  • AEG Worldwide
  • BBC
  • Bartle Bogle Hegarty
  • Bauer Media
  • Citi Studio
  • Conde Nast Publishers
  • Closer Magazine
  • Elle Magazine
  • Image Box PR
  • Inca Productions
  • Tea & Cake PR
  • WGSN.


Skills and qualities

As a student on a practical course, you'll develop as a highly-skilled practitioner in your chosen field. You’ll also learn a wide range of transferable personal skills, such as:

  • Communication
  • Networking
  • Presentation
  • Commercial awareness
  • Problem solving
  • Decision-making
  • Research
  • Time management
  • Self- promotion
  • Team-working
  • Attention to detail.


Industry connections

Our courses benefit from strong connections with leading fashion and textiles companies, generating many opportunities for rewarding work placements and live project briefs. Our industry links include:

  • Alexander McQueen
  • Jenny Packham
  • Jonathan Saunders
  • Reiss
  • Roland Mouret
  • Erdem
  • Eyefix Designs
  • Peter Pilotto
  • WGSN
  • Debenhams’ design department
  • Keeler Gordon design studio
  • LK Bennett design studio
  • Margo Selby
  • Paul Smith
  • Savoir Beds, Mayfair
  • Victoria and Albert Museum.


Subject areas at UCA

  • Fashion & Textiles
  • Journalism
  • Photography.