Fashion Textiles

BA (Hons) - UCA Rochester - 2019

Based in an open studio environment with your own personal space, our innovative BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles course offers you the freedom to explore print through a wide range of design-led projects.

You can combine traditional, hand-crafted textile techniques with the latest digital technology, working in our well-equipped print room and digital textiles lab.

You’ll develop the visual, creative and practical skills you need to work in contemporary practice, where your printed designs could be realised as anything from a catwalk collection, fabric design or accessories, through to fashion-led interiors.

From business acumen to self-promotion, you'll learn how to make a name for yourself in the industry, find work, and graduate with a deep understanding of the business of fashion.

With our experienced staff, we’ll train you to achieve professional standards.

You’ll have the chance to work on live industry projects with big brand names, as well exhibit your work at shows such as Graduate Fashion Week and the New Designers Exhibition.

Our professional links range from Alexander McQueen and Peter Pilotto, to Material Lab and Westcott Studios.

For a successful career in today’s fashion textiles industry, designers need to be highly creative, cutting-edge and adaptable.

Our fashion and textiles courses are ranked sixth in the UK by The Guardian University Guide 2018.

With our specialist digital textile lab that has four fabric printers, you’ll have access to high-quality print for a wide variety of fabrics including cottons, silks, wools, synthetics and leathers.

The textiles print room has a dye lab, screen-printing tables, screen separation and preparation, fabric processing and cloth-dying equipment.

Our pattern and production workshops are equipped with pattern cutting tables, industrial sewing machines and embroidery machines.

Our graduates have gone on to secure positions at many fashion and textile brands such as Jimmy Choo, Monsoon, Debenhams and House of Fraser, working in many key areas including textile design for clothes, CAD design for printed textiles, interior and exterior print applications, design forecasting, fabrics and print products.

Length of study:

Three years full-time


UCA Rochester

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Entry requirements:

112 UCAS tariff points

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Next event

20 Feb 2019

Open Day - all campuses

Course details

  • Year 1

    The first year will provide you with a foundation of practical, technical knowledge and a firm grounding in printed textiles techniques, pattern cutting, and proportions of the body, garment construction, silhouette, colour and illustration. As well as an original perspective on mark making, a fresh approach to the inherent and applied qualities of fabric will also be explored. 

    Your studies will cover: 

    • Introduction to fashion and printed textile design 
    • Visual studies, drawing and illustration 
    • Introduction to digital textile design and production (CAD and CAM) 
    • Research and cultural studies 
    • Printing, traditional and digital 
    • Introduction to garment production 
    • Seminars, discussion and presentations.

    Getting Into Print
    This unit provides you with the foundation of fundamental practical, technical knowledge and the grounding in printed textiles techniques, pattern cutting and research - required both to study on the course and to later embark on your career in the fashion textiles industry.

    Pattern and Repeat
    We'll introduce you to the exciting creative potential within the structural applications of pattern and repeat in textile design and how these devices can inform your design work. The formal and informal use of repeat, combined with scale and colour, will be explored to create innovative and original design work.

    Fabulous Technicolour
    This unit examines the introduction and exploration of the digital textile design and production methods (CAD and CAM). The digital manipulation of hand-generated design ideas, ready for digital production, will be explored - as a vehicle to further expand your creative skills. The main focus will be on the examination of how digital design and production methods can enhance and expand your ideas.

    History and Theory
    A series of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials will establish a foundation for the evaluation and discussion of fashion, dress and textiles in both written and oral form. This unit will draw on seminal works and the latest academic research to explore the production and consumption of fashion and textiles in their historical and theoretical context. This will give you an understanding of the methodology of fashion research for both the historical and recent past.

  • Year 2

    You'll move away from a staff-led schedule to a more student-directed approach. You'll be encouraged to be increasingly self-motivated and self-reliant, as well as original, and confident in creative risk taking and exploring the exciting range of possibilities for printed textiles. 

    Your studies will cover: 

    • Work placement 
    • Creative design, business practice 
    • Contemporary fashion and professional practice 
    • Printed textile design, production techniques, design process and patter cutting 
    • Research and self critical practice 
    • Digital printing, silk screen printing and dyeing explored in greater depth 
    • Collaborative team project with industry partner 
    • International exchange.

    Textiles Futures
    This unit focuses on samples, prints, fabric manipulation swatches and garment ideas, inspired by textile futures and new technology, presented as a cohesive range in a professional format. An imaginative, innovative application of surface pattern to cloth will be encouraged. You'll be asked to research, explore and investigate the way in which advances in fabric technology, fibre construction, products and concepts related to technology might inspire designs for fashion and textiles.

    Professional Preparation
    In preparation for both your third year and your future career, you'll select one of the following options: 

    Option one: Placement - you'll undertake a three to five week self-initiated work placement, relevant to your potential career direction and contributing to the fulfilment of the course aims and objectives. 

    Option two: Industry case study - you'll have the opportunity to study an aspect of the industry that especially interests you, through the method of case study research.

    Modernism and Postmodernism
    After a year of looking at fashion specifically, this unit is devoted to the investigation of a broader spectrum of cultural production. This ensures a thorough understanding of the connection between fashion and culture and the relevance of clothes to modern life. 

    Designs Into Industry
    This unit will focus on the production of a design statement in the development of a capsule collection of printed design ideas for a specific market/company. The unit focuses on a live project scenario in which a selected company profiles, product lines, promotion and branding as well as future markets are researched. 

    Developing Research and Critical Enquiry
    This unit provides space to consider the research and inquiry options available to you in the final year, and evaluate your future direction. Through exploration of a subject area related to either broader contextual issues, or a concern within the industry you aspire to work in, you will develop appropriate research skills applicable to your final year of study. 

    Study Abroad (optional)
    This is an optional unit that will allow you to spend a period of time in an overseas educational institution.

  • Year 3

    At the final stage of the course, you'll consolidate your acquired knowledge and understanding, enabling you to prepare for professional practice in your chosen career pathway with your final major project. 

    Your studies will cover: 

    • Final independent project and dissertation 
    • External design brief, industry competition and specialist professional practice 
    • Internal and external exhibition and shows 
    • Research, design and create a collection, which is presented at either catwalk show or exhibition such as Graduate Fashion Week and New Designers 
    • Production of a professional portfolio.

    Fashion Textiles Print Collection
    Preparation, development and realisation of your final fashion textiles print collection. You'll be provided with the opportunity to begin to define your creative identity as a fashion print designer.

    You'll have the chance to demonstrate your individual creative identity, aligned to career aspirations. You'll do this through the production of a professional portfolio, consolidating the knowledge and skills acquired on the course.

    Option 1: Thesis
    You'll undertake a substantial period of individually-devised research on a subject related to the contextual and/or theoretical concerns of your discipline or professional aspirations. This will be applied and presented within a structured written dissertation that conforms to academic conventions.

    Option 2: Research for Industry
    Provides you with an opportunity to critically reflect on and evaluate your practice, and offers a space to conduct more in-depth research into the specific sector of the industry you aspire to work in.

  • Study abroad

    This course offers the opportunity to study abroad for part of your second year. To find out more about studying abroad as part of your course please see the Study Abroad section:

  • Fees

    Find out all about the fees for studying with us, as well as the grants, loans and other financial support you may be entitled to:


The excellent facilities include: textiles print room facility with a fully equipped dye lab, traditional screen printing tables, fabric processing and cloth dying; digital textiles resource area; three specialist digital textile printers; large and well-equipped pattern and production studios and workshops with Gerber digitized pattern cutting technology, industrial sewing machines and embroidery machines.

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Course connections

On this course, you'll be exposed to a world of opportunities

  • Industry links

    We have strong industry connections with a range of leading organisations, including: 

    • Alexander McQueen
    • Peter Pilotto
    • Jonathan Saunders
    • Erdem
    • WGSN
    • Tom Cody
    • Keeler Gordon
    • Preen
    • Westcott Studios
    • TO3 Textiles Innovation Centre
    • Ronse, Belgium
    • Cite de la Dentelle et de la Mode Museum, Calais
    • Turner Contemporary
    • Quex Park Museum
    • Eyefix Designs.
  • Careers

    Graduates from this course have secured positions at many fashion and textile companies - just a few of them include: 

    • Jimmy Choo 
    • Debenhams
    • Skinny Dip
    • The Collection
    • Monsoon
    • Beetlejuice
    • House of Fraser.

    Key areas of graduate work include: 

    • Textile design for clothes
    • CAD design for printed textiles
    • Fabrics and print products
    • Fashion accessories
    • Interiors and exterior print applications
    • Freelance design or research
    • Design forecasting
    • Entrepreneurship and artists- in-residence. 
  • Further study

    There's also the opportunity to progress to a postgraduate course at UCA.


How to apply - 2019 entry

I am a UK or EU citizen ...

I am not a UK or EU citizen ...

When to apply:

If applying via UCAS the application deadline is the 15 January. If applying directly to us, you can apply throughout the year but we recommend you apply as early as possible so you have time to arrange accommodation and visas.

More information:

Go to our how to apply pages

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

Along with your portfolio, the standard entry requirements* for this course are:

One of the following:

  • 112 new UCAS tariff points, see accepted qualifications
  • Pass at Foundation Diploma in Art & Design (Level 3 or 4)
  • Distinction, Merit, Merit at BTEC Extended Diploma
  • Merit at UAL Extended Diploma
  • 112 new UCAS tariff points from an accredited Access to Higher Education Diploma in appropriate subject
  • 27-30 total points in the International Baccalaureate Diploma with at least 15 IB points at Higher level, see more information about IB entry requirements.

And four GCSE passes at grade A*-C and/or grade 4-9 including English (or Functional Skills English/Key Skills Communication Level 2).

Other relevant and equivalent Level 3 UK and international qualifications are considered on an individual basis, and we encourage students from diverse educational backgrounds to apply.

*We occasionally make offers which are lower than the standard entry criteria, to students who have faced difficulties that have affected their performance and who were expected to achieve higher results. We consider the strength of our applicants’ portfolios, as well as their grades -  in these cases, a strong portfolio is especially important.

International entry requirements

To view the equivalent entry requirements for your country please select it in the list below.

Pick Your Country

Non-UK equivalent qualifications

English language requirements

Your portfolio

For this course we will require you to attend an Applicant Day and bring your portfolio for assessment. When producing your portfolio, make sure you demonstrate a strong affinity for materials and the application of pattern and colour to a variety of media, supported by a creative approach to drawing and clear evidence of an interest in the historical and contemporary elements that shape and influence the fashion industry. Further information on how to compile a portfolio and the specific requirements for examples of work to be included will be provided on the Applicant Portal after you apply.

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