Sophie Watkins

What made you want to specialise in Fashion Sportswear?

After spending a year in Canada, in the mountains and outdoors, I knew it was the kind of lifestyle that I really enjoyed. Coming back to the UK, I spent a year working in a ski / snowboard / outdoor shop and, after learning lots about fabrics and what is available on the market, I knew it was an area I wanted to explore through design.

What is it that you like about Sportswear design? Are you more interested in the fashion element of it or the technical side?

Mainly the technical side, especially practicality of the garment as it is a definite hindrance to the sportsperson if the clothing doesn't perform and aid them. Whilst on the course, the fashion side has become of great interest to me as well.

How does the course differ from say a Womenswear or Menswear design course?

You have the chance to do both! It is, I think, a deeper exploration into a particular field which some people enjoy and it has to be a commercial product otherwise there is no use for it.

Could you tell us a bit about any of the industry projects that you were involved in?

English National Ballet, Adidas and Speedo this year. It has been great working on live briefs and being able to meet the designers on a regular basis. They add a different perspective to your tutors', which can be very helpful.

Do you think Sportswear is a good area to specialise in?

Personally for me, very. I think it is a market that is growing massively. You can also easily adapt skills, such as pattern-cutting, to other elements of fashion if that takes your interest during the course.