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Dr Natascha Radclyffe-Thomas is the Inaugural University of the Arts London Teaching Scholar, Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and currently Course Leader Leader for BA (Hons) Fashion Marketing.
Natascha first worked at LCF as a Visiting Tutor, combining this with running a small fashion business, the experience from which informs her teaching and research. As partner in a successful childrenswear company Miss Fleur, she was involved with all stages of the product design process; travelling in Europe sourcing fabrics, managing the production of samples and garments, and liaising with buyers and press in the UK and internationally at trade shows. Miss Fleur designs won the Best Newcomer Award at Premier Childrenswear 1998, the Drapers Record Best Stand Award at Premier Childrenswear 1999, was Highly Commended as Best New British Designer at the Junior Fashion Awards 1999 and nominated for Best British Designer at the Junior Fashion Awards 2000.
Dr Radclyffe-Thomas taught in Hong Kong and New York for several years, completing a Doctorate in Education in 2011; her thesis explored implicit concepts of creativity with reference to Western and Confucian heritage cultures and how those culturally situated understandings manifest themselves in fashion education and practice. Whilst living in Hong Kong she worked with UAL’s International Office to foster creative links between UAL and Hong Kong and co-created a multidisciplinary art event ‘City Sanctuary’ in collaboration with the Hong Kong Youth Arts Foundation. Whist there she studied under a Shanghai tailor and learnt the art of making the ultimate Chinese fashion item- the qipao!
Dr Radclyffe-Thomas is an active researcher, publishing papers and presenting at conferences internationally; her recent research looks at how issues such as culture, heritage, city-branding and social entrepreneurship manifest themselves in contemporary fashion marketing in the West and Asia and how cities such as London and Shanghai build fashion identities through their engagement with city branding.
Dr Radclyffe-Thomas has also been awarded the National Teaching Fellowship Award. The National Teaching Fellowship Scheme (NTFS) celebrates excellent practice and outstanding achievement in learning and teaching in higher education.
I want students to be involved in their own learning and understand the agency they have in developing themselves and their fashion industry careers.
What inspires you about what you do?
I love fashion and I love collaborating with creative people- colleagues, students, academics and industry professionals to produce innovative outcomes.
What would a typical session with your students involve?
My teaching philosophy is to inspire curiosity and the joy of discovery. To this end I like to present theoretical information and fashion products in novel, accessible ways. I want students to be involved in their own learning and understand the agency they have in developing themselves and their fashion industry careers.
What makes the Business courses at LCF unique?
One amazing inspiring thing about LCF is its own long history of fashion education- thousands of industry professionals have graduated from LCF and these industry links enhance the student experience. Another great thing about teaching at LCF is the extraordinary students who come here from the UK and across the world bringing diverse experiences and points of view that can enrich everyone’s learning.
What do graduates from the course go on to do?
Fashion is such a great industry because there are so many opportunities for our graduates. BA (Hons) Fashion Marketing is a specialized marketing course completely contextualized in the fashion industry they can find their own special interests and skills and go on to work in a range of marketing-related jobs in the UK and overseas including marketing communications, brand management, retail marketing, digital marketing and events management.
What key advice would you give to someone applying for the course?
Be curious about everything you encounter, be open to new experiences and listen to your inner fashionista!