Italian Giulia Pastore worked in retail in London for two years before joining MA Fashion Retail Management.
Why did you choose to study MA Fashion Retail Management?
Since I got to London in 2011, I've been working in retail and loved the pace and the passion for it in this city, so I decided it was time to take a step forward for my future career and apply for a Masters that would give me a higher value.
And why did you choose London College of Fashion?
LCF is by far one of the most renowned universities for fashion studies not just in London but internationally, so I knew it would be an immense opportunity to be a student there.
Tell me about your experience of the course? What are your highlights?
Coming from a very different academic background (Linguistic and Cultural Studies in Milan and Lisbon), I had a very hard time in getting to understand exactly what was needed at MA level in UK and especially at LCF. But with the help of the teachers and working hard with some coursemates, I realised I could do it and I was improving my skills with the time passing.
Have you taken part in any competitions or industry projects? What did you get out of them?
We had a few industry project that really made us realise what happens in the industry and why our academic skills are useful at a professional level. In the first term, me and my group won the industry project sort of competition created for the VSS course on the design of a window display for Topshop Oxford Street.
Did you have contact with people in industry?
We had a number of industry speakers throughout the course who gave us precious insight into their jobs and the current state of the industry. Also, we had a couple of industry projects where we got to work for Planarama Design and John Smedley. Basically all of our assignments were focused on the study of a brand from different perspectives, and that required us to make contacts with professionals and industry insiders, which is an extra chance to discover the industry.
What are the facilities like at LCF?
First, the location of the different sites is ideal, and then the facilities are mostly very accessible and convenient.
What are the LCF staff like?
LCF staff are friendly and helpful, I never experienced any sort of problem with them.
What is the balance of theoretical and practical work on the course?
I’d say the theoretical workload is much higher than the practical, as MA level study requires, but in general assignments are based on current issues and practical topics, so it makes you study with a practical view.
How have you found living in London? If you moved here, how did you find the initial move?
I didn’t move to London because of the MA, I had lived here for the previous two years working, so I was totally prepared for the fast paced and intense London life.
Have you been to any events put on by the College (the Inside the Industry series, for example)?
I’ve been quite active in the college activities, as much as possible, because again I think it was and immense opportunity that not every college could give you.
Do you have any hobbies or passions outside of your course?
Music, exhibitions, work, London life, friends... there’s so much to do outside of the course!
What were you doing before joining the course?
I used to work for Quiksilver in the stores and I started to discover the opportunities that London gives when you work hard and you are motivated.
Where are you from?
I’m from Italy, half from a small town by the Lake Maggiore an hour away form Milan and half from Sardinia. Also, I’ve been living in Lisbon in Portugal for two years before coming to London.
Do you have any tips for prospective students?
Don’t get scared and keep yourself motivated. A group of people that you trust and you work well with is absolutely fundamental during the course, so you don't get lost and for sharing thoughts and ideas with. London can be overwhelming, but it’s such a great city!